The aim of this chapter is to examine the profile of high-performing small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Traditional Manufacturing Sectors (TMSs). The authors main contribution is to provide recommendations and benchmarks for prescribing a more robust model of internationalisation in these industries by specifying the types of internationalisation and innovation that better reinforce competitiveness. Our results, based on a sample of 132 SMEs, show that high-performing SMEs make more intense use of advanced operation modes that imply a closer interaction with the host country to access knowledge diversity, skills and work available in those markets. Moreover, compared to low-performing SMEs, and independently of their size and experience, these firms use a wide set of networking and marketing capabilities and develop innovations based on organisational changes that help to create new business models. After a number of years of forced adjustment and adaptation to a globalised context, the new model of high-performing SME in TMS could help to improve the global positioning of these firms in the long term.
The authors acknowledge the financial support from the Ministry of Education and Science (research project: ECO2017-85456-R) and Generalitat Valenciana (GVA/2017/155).
Villar, C. and Pla-Barber, J. (2018), "The High-Performing SMEs in Traditional Manufacturing Sectors: Innovation and Foreign Operation Modes", Dominguez, N. and Mayrhofer, U. (Ed.) Key Success Factors of SME Internationalisation: A Cross-Country Perspective (International Business and Management, Vol. 34), Emerald Publishing Limited, Leeds, pp. 81-96. https://doi.org/10.1108/S1876-066X20180000034005
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