Globalization and marketing strategies of Born Globals in SMOPECs

Reijo Luostarinen*, Mika Gabrielsson

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

117 Citations (Scopus)


This research examines Born Global companies, which are facing tremendous entrepreneurial and managerial challenges related to instant or rapid globalization. A major research problem addressed is whether the strategies and processes of Born Globals differ essentially from those of other firms in respect to globalization and global marketing. Based on a literature analysis, we first examine the concept of Born Globals and then turn to a review of the research dealing with the globalization and marketing strategies of Born Globals. Survey results on 89 Finnish Born Globals from high-tech, high-design, high-service, high-know-how, and high-system business areas are presented. Their domestic stage lasts for an average of only 2.1 years. For conventional companies, the period is ten times longer. Furthermore, Born Globals can be classified on the basis of their development into three preliminary stages (research & development [RD], domestic, and entry) and into four major stages (starting, development, growth, and mature). The study then proceeds to examine the globalization and global marketing strategies of Born Globals through a multiple case study of 30 case companies representing the above development stages. Special attention is paid to the mature Born Globals, which were found to have passed quickly through the conventional internationalization stages, jumped over some stages, and, in some cases, even progressed in reverse order. After this, attention turns to a detailed examination of the challenges identified and their solutions for three particular interest groups: entrepreneurs, government policymakers, and academicians. The implications of the results for entrepreneurs should be of particular importance, as managerial, research and development, sales and marketing, and also financial challenges and solutions are covered in detail. Finally, this research concludes that although many of the Born Global findings deviate from the internationalization behavior of conventional companies, the holistic and company-level stage models still seem to have a high degree of explanatory power for many companies originating in small and open economies (SMOPEC).

Original languageEnglish
Peer-reviewed scientific journalThunderbird International Business Review
Issue number6
Pages (from-to)773-801
Number of pages29
Publication statusPublished - 2006
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article - refereed


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