This paper investigates how subsidiary companies are able to contribute to the firm‐specific advantages of the multinational corporation (MNC). Specifically we examine the determinants of the contributory role of the subsidiary and subsidiary initiative. The study reveals the following significant relationships: (a) internal subsidiary resources in combination with initiative have a strong positive impact on the subsidiary's contributory role; (b) subsidiary initiative is strongly associated with the leadership and entrepreneurial culture in the subsidiary; and (c) contributory role is strongly associated with subsidiary autonomy and a low level of local competition. We discuss the implications of these findings and some of the theoretical issues associated with subsidiary initiative. Our provisional conclusion is that MNC subsidiaries can not only contribute to firm‐specific advantage creation, they can also drive the process. © 1998 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
Strategic Management Journal – Wiley
Published: Mar 1, 1998
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