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Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to investigate key contingencies affecting the internationalization of young ventures, and to shed light on early internationalization's implications for organizational survival and growth. Design/methodology/approach – A previously suggested conceptual framework is tested based on a quantitative study of UK firms before explorative analysis takes the analysis further. Findings – Contrary to the model suggested by Sapienza et al. that internationalization is of increasing importance at young ventures' founding stage, no such indications were found in this study. Further statistical tests revealed interesting insights into the relationship between other organizational factors and a young firm's survival and growth prospects. Research limitations/implications – The empirical results suggest that internationalization is a largely overrated theoretical factor as far as young ventures' short‐term survival and performance are concerned. As internationalization paths differ contingent upon country of origin and other factors, further empirical tests are needed beyond the UK sample. Originality/value – Empirical tests of previously suggested conceptual frameworks are needed to advance the body of knowledge on successful internationalization. Next to this initial test, further exploratory analysis suggests a refined framework.
Multinational Business Review – Emerald Publishing
Published: Nov 11, 2011
Keywords: International business; Business formation; Business development; Business performance; Internationalization; New ventures; UK firms; Growth; Survival
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