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Title: The role of interorganisational networks in foreign market exploitation by SMEs : a case study of Thailand's food sector
Author: Mongkol, Suthinee
ISNI:       0000 0004 7963 9711
Awarding Body: Kingston University
Current Institution: Kingston University
Date of Award: 2018
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This research aims to investigate the role of interorganisational networks in foreign market identification and exploitation by small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in Thailand. This research was undertaken because of the role of SMEs and exports in the Thai economy, coupled with a poor understanding in the literature regarding the extent to which Thai SMEs engage in export-led trade facilitated by interorganisational networks and shared resources. The research focuses on interorganisational networks of food industry SMEs. The theoretical basis of the research was established in models of internationalisation for SMEs and knowledge about the role of interorganisational networks in foreign market exploitation. The methodology involves longitudinal case studies, based on multiple interviews with 15 SMEs and two network partners. The cases analyse their current export situation, the role of network partners, including government institutions and programmes, changes in their trade position and role of interorganisational partners. Theoretically the research showed no single pattern of SME exporting. For example, while about 53% of firms seemed to follow the 'Uppsala model' of learning and gradual internationalisation, the other 47% were new exporting firms or so-called 'born global' firms. However, firms did share a number of similarities. For example, many were, at least initially, dependent on the Department of International Trade Promotion (DITP) and their trade fairs and other subsidised promotional activities to make initial contact with customers. Customers and commercial banks were also highly important network trade partners, although government banks such as EXIM Bank were less important. Most firms showed a reduction in reliance on government partners over time, as their customer base grew and relationships developed. The conclusion of this study is that the pattern of SME's foreign market identification and exploitation is dependent on the assistance of interorganisational network partners. These partners provide different types of assistance depending on the stage of export development, from offering initial assistance with international market entry through trade shows and expos to assisting with technical development and quality control for firms refining and expanding their export markets. Ultimately, however, the analysis shows that SME export success is dependent on both their own efforts and their effective use of available partner assistance.
Supervisor: Blackburn, Robert ; Smallbone, David Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Business and management studies