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Article
Publication date: 17 March 2021

Mikael Hilmersson, Martin Johanson, Heléne Lundberg and Stylianos Papaioannou

Few researchers and even fewer practitioners would deny that serendipitous events play a central role in the growth process of firms. However, most international marketing…

Abstract

Purpose

Few researchers and even fewer practitioners would deny that serendipitous events play a central role in the growth process of firms. However, most international marketing models ignore the role of serendipity in the opportunity discovery process. The authors provide a nuanced view on international opportunities by developing the role of serendipitous opportunities in the foreign market entry process. The authors develop a model integrating the notions of serendipity, entrepreneurial logic, experiential knowledge and network knowledge redundancy. From the study’s model, the authors condense three sets of hypotheses on the relationships among experiential knowledge and entry strategy, network knowledge redundancy, entry strategy and serendipity.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors confront the study’s hypotheses with data collected on-site at 168 Swedish firms covering 234 opportunities, and to test the hypotheses, the authors ran ordinary least squares (OLS) regression tests in three steps.

Findings

The results of the study’s analysis reveal that experiential knowledge and network knowledge redundancy both lead to a logic based on rigid planning and systematic search, which in turn reduces the likelihood that serendipitous opportunities will be realized in the foreign market entry process.

Originality/value

This is the first study that develops a measure of opportunities that are the outcome of serendipitous events. In addition, the authors integrate network and learning theories and internationalization theory by establishing antecedents to, and outcomes of, the entry strategy.

Details

International Marketing Review, vol. 38 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0265-1335

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 11 May 2015

Mikael Hilmersson, Susanne Sandberg and Firouze Pourmand Hilmersson

– The purpose of the study is to examine the political sources of uncertainty in the internationalization process of small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

2081

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of the study is to examine the political sources of uncertainty in the internationalization process of small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

Design/methodology/approach

The authors theoretically derived a research model embracing three hypotheses. These hypotheses are tested on a sample of 203 on-site interviewed SMEs. Regression analysis is used to test two individual hypotheses and one interaction effect.

Findings

The regression analysis reveals that political knowledge possessed by the firm reduces uncertainty in the internationalization process. Political turbulence is shown to increase uncertainty in the internationalization. The interaction shows that political turbulence obliterates the uncertainty reducing effect by political knowledge.

Research limitations/implications

The authors identifies two main political sources of uncertainty in the internationalization process of SMEs. For managers and business researchers, it is shown that experiential knowledge is useful under stable conditions. When turbulence increases, however, firms need to develop alternative strategies for uncertainty management.

Originality/value

This study is the first to test the uncertainty reducing effects of experiential knowledge in turbulent environments. Thus, by running the interaction between political knowledge and political turbulence, the authors shed new light on the usefulness of previous experiences in the internationalization process.

Details

European Business Review, vol. 27 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0955-534X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 21 October 2013

Mikael Hilmersson

The purpose of this study is to develop internationalization process theory by examining the relationship between small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) international…

1022

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to develop internationalization process theory by examining the relationship between small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) international experience and their degree of insidership in newly opened business networks.

Design/methodology/approach

The study applies a quantitative approach. Data were collected on-site at 203 SMEs having entered the Baltic States, Poland, Russia and China. The data are analysed with structural equation modeling in SmartPLS.

Findings

The paper reveals that international experience is positively associated with both the country and customer experience in the newly opened business network. Country experience, in turn, is strongly associated with a firm's degree of insidership in the business network. Conflicting with the hypothesized model, no support is found for the direct relationship between international experience and insidership. Nor does the analysis reveal any significant relationship between a firm's customer experience, in terms of variation, in the newly opened business network and the degree of insidership in the network.

Research limitations/implications

The paper empirically discriminates different types of international experience derived from theory and examines their relationship with the degree of firm insidership in newly opened business networks.

Originality/value

Theoretically this paper advances internationalization process theory by developing its network aspect as well as discriminating different experience types and their role in predicting network insidership in newly opened business networks.

Details

Baltic Journal of Management, vol. 8 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1746-5265

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 31 October 2009

Hans Jansson and Mikael Hilmersson

Purpose – The main purpose of this paper is to analyze the major problem faced by exporting subcontractors from emerging markets on how to leap over the barrier of low…

Abstract

Purpose – The main purpose of this paper is to analyze the major problem faced by exporting subcontractors from emerging markets on how to leap over the barrier of low technology and high dependency. The second purpose is to develop a theoretical framework for this analysis.

Methodology – The paper builds on a holistic multiple case study of eight internationalizing small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the Baltic Sea Region (BSR). Interviews were performed with managers of four West European SMEs and four East European SMEs all crossing the Baltic Sea. In addition, interviews were performed with each firm's intermediaries/customers on foreign soil.

Findings – The study identifies two main international business marketing strategies for small subcontractors in emerging country markets enabling such firms to escape the trap of low-cost production and high dependency. The first is a traditional subcontractor strategy of integrating more into the contractors' production process. The second strategy is labeled the marketing route. Here, the subcontractor becomes more independent by moving further upstream in the value chain or the vertical customer network to develop its own products.

Practical implications – How a small subcontractor in a low-cost country can learn from more experienced exporters on how to develop their international business marketing network capabilities.

Originality – The study is unique in that it applies the perspective of the low-cost country subcontractors. Traditionally subcontracting is studied from the contractors' point of view.

Details

Research on Knowledge, Innovation and Internationalization
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84855-956-1

Book part
Publication date: 20 October 2011

Mikael Hilmersson, Hans Jansson and Susanne Sandberg

Purpose – This study sets out to establish experiential knowledge profiles of small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) entering emerging markets and to examine how the…

Abstract

Purpose – This study sets out to establish experiential knowledge profiles of small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) entering emerging markets and to examine how the different abilities contained in these profiles impact the sustainability of market positions in the new turbulent era of global business.

Methodology – We analyse a sample of 203 entries into emerging markets by Swedish SMEs. The data collected on site at all sample firms is analysed in two sequential stages. First, an exploratory factor analysis is performed to derive four types of experiential knowledge. Second, a cluster analysis is performed to establish experiential knowledge profiles among the entering SMEs.

Findings – The result of the analysis shows that experiential knowledge is a multi-dimensional construct consisting of four main types. Moreover, emerging market entering SMEs are shown to develop different knowledge profiles. We suggest that Masters are well prepared for such periods. Learners most probably will experience high levels of uncertainty, whereas Country and Customer Experts face less uncertainty due to their specialisation on either host market or customer knowledge.

Originality – The chapter shows that the experiential knowledge base of emerging market entering SMEs is an important indicator of the readiness for turbulent times. Firms will be able to sustain market positions differently depending on which type of knowledge profile they belong to.

Content available
Book part
Publication date: 20 October 2011

Abstract

Details

Entrepreneurship in the Global Firm
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78052-115-2

Content available
Book part
Publication date: 31 October 2009

Abstract

Details

Research on Knowledge, Innovation and Internationalization
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84855-956-1

Content available
Article
Publication date: 26 October 2012

337

Abstract

Details

International Marketing Review, vol. 29 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0265-1335

Book part
Publication date: 31 October 2009

Jorma Larimo and Tiia Vissak

This volume of Progress in International Business Research comprises of a selection of 12 competitive papers from the 34th EIBA (European International Business Academy…

Abstract

This volume of Progress in International Business Research comprises of a selection of 12 competitive papers from the 34th EIBA (European International Business Academy) annual conference, which was held in Tallinn, Estonia in December 2008 with the theme “International Business and the Catching-up Economies: Challenges and Opportunities”. It addresses two main issues – (1) the internationalization process and (2) the role of knowledge and innovation for internationalization – that are important in the current economic slowdown both for catching-up and for other economies, scholars, and practitioners.

Details

Research on Knowledge, Innovation and Internationalization
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84855-956-1

Article
Publication date: 7 September 2012

Olli Kuivalainen, Sanna Sundqvist, Sami Saarenketo and Rod McNaughton

The purpose of this paper is to present an overview of the conceptual frameworks and concepts with which the research on internationalization patterns of small and…

9694

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to present an overview of the conceptual frameworks and concepts with which the research on internationalization patterns of small and medium‐sized enterprises (SMEs) should be conducted.

Design/methodology/approach

A comprehensive overview of concepts and a conceptual framework to study internationalization patterns of SMEs is offered.

Findings

The complexities of existing definitions and methodologies for researching internationalization patterns are highlighted, and a synthesis of the issues is provided. An integrative model of internationalization pathways, and their antecedents and outcomes is presented.

Research limitations/implications

It is recommended that future research focuses especially on the time dimension of internationalization patterns. Future research can contribute to the literature by adopting a longitudinal approach with larger samples and more detailed cases to capture the dynamics of internationalization.

Practical implications

Practitioners might map their positions, and look for challenges and opportunities with regard to their chosen internationalization pattern. They can also benchmark other firms’ pathways and fine‐tune their own approach to internationalization.

Originality/value

The paper integrates a large body of research in an important research area in international marketing. It also provides guidance on how to conduct future research in the area, and introduces the content of this special issue of the International Marketing Review.

Details

International Marketing Review, vol. 29 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0265-1335

Keywords

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