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Developing non-traditional firm-specific advantages in domestic strategic factor markets: evidence from China

Feng Wan (International Business School, Zhejiang University, Haining, China)
Peter Williamson (Judge Business School, Cambridge University, Cambridge, UK)
Naresh Pandit (Norwich Business School, University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK)

Multinational Business Review

ISSN: 1525-383X

Article publication date: 7 February 2024

54

Abstract

Purpose

Chinese firms are winning market share from foreign multinational enterprises in domestic markets. The international business literature suggests that this is happening because these firms are developing non-traditional firm-specific advantages (FSAs). Strategic factor market (SFM) theory provides a good basis for explaining how this is happening. However, it is underdeveloped in terms of analysing unique resources and unique access to those resources by Chinese firms in their domestic markets. This paper aims to develop a framework to understand how Chinese firms have developed non-traditional FSAs.

Design/methodology/approach

The case study method is adopted to explore how Chinese firms develop non-traditional FSAs. Specifically, the authors compare paired case studies of a Chinese firm and a foreign multinational in each of two industries.

Findings

The authors find that Chinese firms have developed non-traditional FSAs because of more relevant experience, better adapted strategies and privileged relationships. This has enabled Chinese firms to develop non-traditional FSAs.

Originality/value

The authors propose a framework that conceptualises non-traditional FSA development in Chinese firms as a product of superior access to unique and valuable resources in their domestic SFMs.

Keywords

Citation

Wan, F., Williamson, P. and Pandit, N. (2024), "Developing non-traditional firm-specific advantages in domestic strategic factor markets: evidence from China", Multinational Business Review, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print. https://doi.org/10.1108/MBR-06-2023-0107

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2024, Emerald Publishing Limited

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