Emerging models for Italian SMEs internationalization: the Platform India case.

Emma Garavaglia, Luigi Serio

Risultato della ricerca: Contributo in libroContributo a convegno


Globalization and breaking market boundaries, put the issue of international competitiveness at the core of the strategic agenda of Italian firms. Studies on SME’s internationalization highlight that economic variables are often insufficient to explain (un)successful experiences in this field. Explanations of how firms are able to overcome the limitations from the small size in the internationalization process, different from the economic one and focused on social capital and intellectual capital, have started to prevail. The paper aims at contributing to the discussion on SMEs internationalization processes, by starting from the evidences of an action-research project aimed at sustaining the internationalization process on the Indian market of Italian SMEs in the machine tool manufacturing sector and in the plastics and rubber processing machinery manufacturing sector. The two sectors are affected by strong pressures on companies to internationalize their business in the new markets: China, India, Brazil and Russia, as main sources of profit. SMEs in these sectors base their competitive advantage to the same extent on the technological, intellectual and social capital of entrepreneurs and on local and institutional systems of relations within which the firm operates. In our hypothesis (based both on the literature review and on the collection and analysis of experiences and needs from the involved firms) these intangible assets play a crucial role also to enter the new markets. The hypothesis at base of the project suggests the idea of leveraging on these variables and promoting network relations at different levels (among the involved firms, among firms and institutions, among institutions in the two countries ) to support the internationalization process on the Indian market. The relations among the involved actors in the two countries have been inspired by Bartlett & Ghoshal’s transnational model (1999) based on the idea of reciprocal exchange in a symmetric relation among different nodes of the network, far from the classical center-periphery model. Starting from these theoretical background and hypothesis and from the stated objectives, the action-research project has developed the Platform India as a model for supporting SMEs entry into the Indian market. The paper is organized into three parts: •theoretical premises, •phases and methodologies: desk research, collection and analysis of experiences of SME’s and need analysis, study tour in India with entrepreneurs; •the Platform India: description of the model and discussion of the theoretical premises and hypothesis in the light of the lessons learned from the experience.
Lingua originaleEnglish
Titolo della pubblicazione ospite9th EBES Conference - Rome PROGRAMME & ABSTRACT BOOK
Numero di pagine1
Stato di pubblicazionePubblicato - 2013
Evento9th EBES conference - Faculty of Economics_Sapienza University Rome
Durata: 11 gen 201313 gen 2013


Convegno9th EBES conference
CittàFaculty of Economics_Sapienza University Rome


  • SMEs
  • internationalization
  • network
  • social capital

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