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Why and how motives (still) matter

Gabriel R.G. Benito (BI Norwegian Business School, Oslo, Norway)

Multinational Business Review

ISSN: 1525-383X

Article publication date: 20 April 2015

2732

Abstract

Purpose

The paper aims to provide a discussion of the relevance of motives for companies’ internationalization.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper is a conceptual discussion building on established classifications of motives of internationalization, which distinguish between market-seeking, efficiency-seeking, resource-seeking and strategic asset-seeking motives.

Findings

The analysis demonstrates that important issues in companies’ internationalization differ systematically across different types of motives, which implicates that motives remain relevant when analyzing various aspects of the internationalization of the firm. Motives are also useful elements for theory building in international business.

Research limitations/implications

The analysis is purely conceptual and is not further substantiated by empirical evidence.

Practical implications

The classification of motives is a useful tool for companies to analyze their strategic alternatives and actions, especially with regard to performance measurement.

Originality/value

The paper demonstrates the importance of retaining a clear classification of motives as a basis for further development of a theory of firms’ internationalization behavior.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

The author thanks Alvaro Cuervo-Cazurra and Rajneesh Narula for their helpful comments and suggestions.

Citation

Benito, G.R.G. (2015), "Why and how motives (still) matter", Multinational Business Review, Vol. 23 No. 1, pp. 15-24. https://doi.org/10.1108/MBR-02-2015-0005

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2015, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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