Title: How Nordic companies in Nigeria respond to host-country risks: a network theory approach

Authors: Agnieszka Chwialkowska; Isau Ganiyu

Addresses: Department of Marketing and Real Estate, Richards College of Business, University of West Georgia, 1601 Maple St., Carrollton, GA 30118, USA ' Department of Marketing, University of Vaasa, Wolffintie 34, 65200 Vaasa, Finland

Abstract: Kidnappings by Boko Haram, the destruction caused by the Niger-Delta militancy, and attacks by Omo Onile do not paint Nigeria as a welcoming host country for your next international project. However, despite these turbulences, international business in Nigeria is thriving. This paper investigates how project marketers deal with the country's uncertainties. Through multiple case study, it analyses the risk management behaviours of Nordic companies operating in this key African market. Drawing from the network theory, we analyse the nature of the host-country risks. We then show that international project managers harness local networks to identify, evaluate and manage risks, as well as link different risks to specific strategic responses. This paper contributes to the project management literature by expanding the existing risk management typologies to the context of international projects, and elaborates on the risks prevalent in the emerging developing economies. We disclose the role of technological leadership and organisational leadership in influencing the Nigerian business environment rather than solely avoiding the corruption-prone projects. We show that exerting leadership is possible by maintaining corporate culture governed by the rules of the home country, even when the company localises its operations through employing host-country natives. This combined approach mitigates the negative risk of the psychic distance, while assuring the transparency of company operations.

Keywords: project risk management; host-country risks; network theory.

DOI: 10.1504/IJEXPORTM.2017.085450

International Journal of Export Marketing, 2017 Vol.1 No.3, pp.240 - 263

Received: 19 May 2016
Accepted: 04 Feb 2017

Published online: 26 Jul 2017 *

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