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Born Global or Gradual Global? Examining the Export Behavior of Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises

Øystein Moen and Per Servais
Journal of International Marketing
Vol. 10, No. 3 (2002), pp. 49-72
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/25048899
Page Count: 24
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Born Global or Gradual Global? Examining the Export Behavior of Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises
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Abstract

Over the past decade, several studies have questioned the stage models of the internationalization process. Many of these studies concentrate on the exporting versus nonexporting factor, identifying an increasing number of firms that are active in international markets shortly after establishment. Limited empirical evidence exists as to whether this actuality indicates simply a reduced time factor in the preexport phase or an important change in the export behavior of firms. Using small and medium-sized exporting firms from Norway, Denmark, and France, the authors focus on the concept of gradual development. The results suggest that export intensity, distribution, market selection, and global orientation are not influenced by the firm's year of establishment or first year of exporting activity. One-third of the firms sampled reported that the time period between establishment and export commencement was less than two years. In terms of export intensity, these firms outperform those that waited several years before exporting. The results indicate that the future export involvement of a firm is, to a large extent, influenced by its behavior shortly after establishment. The results further indicate that the development of resources in support of international market competitiveness may be regarded as the key issue and that the basic resources and competencies of the firm are determined during the establishment phase. The authors review how the management challenges differ depending on the type of firm (age and export involvement) in question.

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