Formation of relationships in VSE internationalisation: chicken or golden egg?
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The main aim of this study was to examine the significance of various relationship types upon the international ambitions of the resource stricken very small enterprise (VSE). Semi-structured in-depth interviews with managing proprietors from seven New Zealand firms reveal a number of common types of relationship greatly impacted upon their ability to internationalise. The rich qualitative approach employed also reveals a variance in the manner the VSE builds and nurtures these relationships. Those employing a transaction cost perspective were inclined to view relationships as the prime mechanism to attain pecuniary and related foreign market outcomes. Conversely, those approaching them from a social exchange perspective viewed relationship formation and maintenance as the prime internationalisation outcome in itself. These findings could have wide ranging theoretical and managerial implications and some are highlighted.
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