Enhancing value in IT services offshoring: Real options matter

Chipalkatti Niranjan, Koch Bruce, Bonnie Buchanan, Doh Jonathan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


In a complex global business environment, more organizations are relying on offshoring to provide critical information technology services (ITS). While there can be substantial cost savings for the offshoring firm, the decision to offshore ITS involves a considerable degree of uncertainty and it is essential to understand the issues and hurdles that will be faced by the offshoring operation. Based on a sample of 189 firms from 34 industries (with most coming from the Asia-Pacific region) that have made at least one offshoring decision, we find that larger market capitalized firms are more likely to outsource offshore than smaller firms. Our results also indicate an initial decrease in downside risk with a diminution in the decline, as offshore intensity increases. We also find some evidence of offshoring’s contribution to growth premia. In considering contingencies to adopt in order to manage downside risk, a real-options framework is discussed. Our findings support the view of offshoring as a dynamic process firms use to create value by leveraging growth options and mitigating risk. By considering the real-options possibilities, the investor gets a better picture of the potential losses and gains which should lead to more prudent IT offshoring investment decisions.
Original languageEnglish
Peer-reviewed scientific journalAsia-Pacific Journal of Risk and Insurance
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)123-147
Number of pages25
Publication statusPublished - 2013
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article - refereed


  • 512 Business and Management


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