Title: Do local business peculiarities matter in internationalisation? A perspective from micro, small and medium-scale entrepreneurs in business clusters

Authors: Anthony Ayakwah; Isaac Sakyi Damoah; Ellis L.C. Osabutey

Addresses: Koforidua Technical University, Eastern Region, Ghana ' Executive Business Centre, Bournemouth, Holdenhurst Road, Bournemouth, UK ' Business School, University of Roehampton, London, UK

Abstract: The factors that drive small business clusters in internationalisation have recently become a matter of great interest for policy makers in emerging and developing economies as these policy makers strive for sustained economic growth. Yet, the literature overlooks the significant influence that co-location plays in generating the needed environment within dynamic relationships, to drive the internationalisation activities in business cluster. We address this gap by collecting and analysing empirical qualitative data from two food processing clusters in Ghana and posit that the local business environment and unique sociocultural factors may influence exports of micro, small and medium-scale businesses. The key findings revealed that partnerships between multinational and indigenous businesses (international exposure of fruit processing businesses and socially embedded relationship of associations and local distributors) have made it possible for dynamic networks to be established in international markets. These export drivers are sustained by socio-cultural collaborative relationships which allow micro, small and medium-enterprises (MSME) to internationalise, while maintaining their local peculiarities.

Keywords: micro small medium-enterprises; entrepreneurs; knowledge; networks; internationalisation; cluster; social ties; Ghana; Africa.

DOI: 10.1504/IJMED.2021.118419

International Journal of Management and Enterprise Development, 2021 Vol.20 No.3, pp.253 - 272

Received: 08 Sep 2020
Accepted: 30 Apr 2021

Published online: 25 Oct 2021 *

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