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The dynamics of regional and global multinationals, 1999-2008

Chang Hoon Oh (Beedie School of Business, Simon Fraser University, Vancouver, Canada)
Alan M. Rugman† (Henley Business School, University of Reading, UK)

Multinational Business Review

ISSN: 1525-383X

Article publication date: 15 July 2014




This paper aims to analyze regional versus global activities of large firms. We assemble longitudinal data over the 1999-2008 period.


Sales and assets data for the Fortune 500 firms from 1999-2008 were compiled from annual reports of the firms, by triad region. The definition of the triad regions is based on international accounting standards. The classifications of firms are based upon the new metric of regional-to-total sales rather than the traditional metric of foreign-to-total sales.


In an extension of the original study of Rugman and Verbeke (2004), no trend toward globalization is found, as nearly 80 per cent of the world’s largest firms are classified as home-region oriented, and only 4 per cent are classified as global. Only a few firms change classifications over the ten-year period. Overall, the world’s largest firms average 70 per cent of their sales and 72 per cent of their assets in their home region of the triad.


This paper is the first one to use longitudinal data in the analysis of regional versus global firms, with ten years of data on the regional sales and assets of the world’s 500 largest firms.



Hoon Oh, C. and M. Rugman†, A. (2014), "The dynamics of regional and global multinationals, 1999-2008", Multinational Business Review, Vol. 22 No. 2, pp. 108-117.



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