This study draws upon the interorganizational imitation theory and endorsement literatures to explain the entry mode decisions of emerging-market firms (EMFs) into developed markets. Specifically, the study argues that EMFs entering developed markets pay differential attention to the prior actions of reference groups – by type of country of origin (whom to follow?) and by entry mode (how to imitate?). We test our hypotheses with a sample of 591 entries by EMFs investing in the United States over a 10-year period. The results support an isomorphism-based framework with different influences across reference groups by country of origin and entry mode. We find a dominant form of isomorphism, even after controlling for transaction costs and resource-based explanations.
Li, D., Miller, S.R. and Eden, L. (2012), "Entry Mode Decisions by Emerging-Market Firms Investing in Developed Markets", Tihanyi, L., Devinney, T.M. and Pedersen, T. (Ed.) Institutional Theory in International Business and Management (Advances in International Management, Vol. 25), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 207-231. https://doi.org/10.1108/S1571-5027(2012)0000025016
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