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The purpose of the paper is twofold. Firstly, it provides an inclusive categorical framework of internationalisation patterns for small- and medium-sized enterprises, and secondly, it presents unique evidence from a developing country and corroborates the proposed framework.Design/methodology/approachA cross-sectional convergent mixed-method design was applied to this research. A phenomenological design was used to develop the typology framework, and subsequently, practical evidence was collected through a cross-sectional survey using a self-reporting questionnaire. A two-step hierarchical clustering analysis was performed to test the framework’s robustness, and a set of characteristics was compared between the patterns via a one-way analysis of variance, F-test.FindingsThe robustness of the constructed categorical framework of 32 internationalisation patterns is substantiated, suggesting that this framework produces veracious discrimination between all patterns of internationalisation. Evidence revealed that the majority of firms showed regional and incremental internationalising behaviour. No true born globals were observed; however, several other early or fast patterns such as “born-international”, “global new venture” and “born-again regional” emerged.Originality/valueThis paper presents a categorical framework and provides evidence of the behaviour of internationalising SMEs from a Middle Eastern developing economy. The categorical framework constructed in this paper uses predefined thresholds, and it is of value because it is inclusive, rigid and incisive. This paper also provides essential insights into the sub-patterns of internationalisation, specifically the born-again and regional phenomenon of internationalisation.
Journal of Research in Marketing and Entrepreneurship – Emerald Publishing
Published: Jan 6, 2023
Keywords: Born global; Born-again global; International new ventures; Internationalisation patterns; Developing economy; Small- and medium-sized enterprises
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