Creating and Managing International Joint Ventures

By Arch G. Woodside; Robert E. Pitts | Go to book overview

11 The Strategic Behavior of Dutch Multinational Enterprises Toward International Joint Ventures: A Multidimensional Analysis

John Bell Pieter K. Jagersma

International expansion is a very important strategic decision for most companies. The reasons for this are well documented elsewhere ( Jagersma 1991). The international dimension of competition became an increasingly important academic discipline in the 1970s and 1980s. Theory followed practice, and in these years some remarkable and interesting publications were introduced (e.g., Contractor and Lorange 1988a; Porter 1986). This created the conceptual context in which many scientists are operating today. In this chapter, the object of study is the international joint venture (IJV). We are interested in a number of questions about this phenomenon. This chapter tries to conceptualize the IJV from different angles. This conceptualization is empirically investigated, by analyzing 80 IJVs during the period 1985 through 1989.

As usual, this chapter is the result of some important shortcomings. These shortcomings are intrinsic to the Dutch context. In the Netherlands we have the unique situation that only a few authors are really involved in the field of International or Comparative Management. This made us aware of the importance of initiating an empirical study to fill the gap with other investigations from other countries.

Our study is explorative in the sense that it tries to give some answers to questions that have never been asked before in the Dutch "state of the art." We also have been disappointed by the marginal attention paid to the IJV as a way of expansion and competition in the theory of the multinational firm. The literature about multinational firms focus on competition and concentration issues. This chapter shows that inter-organizational alliances in general, and IJVs in particular, are an important--instead of a marginally--competitive mechanism. We also believe that most of the multinational companies (MNEs) are still not aware of the utmost importance of international collaboration. Even large MNEs do not have the resources to win the global and local competitive battles

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