Foreign market entry Essay

This essay has a total of 2286 words and 15 pages.

foreign market entry



1.0 Objectives

The author’s objective in this article is to discuss on the effective modes of entry for
businesses that is planning to venture into international market. The entry modes methods
discussed are aimed to help businesses to formulate an effective international business
strategy and to position themselves to be successfully established in the global market.




2.0 Central Theory

The central theory introduced in this article is developed based on a comprehensive
framework of the entry modes choices. These modes of choices would determine the success
factor of the international business strategy, and to choose these choices there are
several important factors to be considered. These factors include situational firm
factors, foreign environment review, and moderating factors that would directly influence
the firm’s desired mode of choice.


Referring to Appendix A is the mode choice of framework by Driscoll that depicts the whole
concept discussed. To briefly illustrate, the firm would need to evaluate the two
situational factors that would directly affect its desired level of different modes of
characteristics. Subsequent from the selected desired modes, the firm would also need to
determine the potential moderating influences, which would affect the desired mode. Thus,
reassessment based on the moderators would take place to determine the most effective
modes of entry. By selecting the right mode of entry, the firm would incorporate an
effective business strategy for its international business plans.




3.0 Arguments

The article written by Driscoll is set to present an argument for the development of a
comprehensive framework for understanding the mode of entry choices. In the article, she
illustrated about the different modes of entry to international markets, analyzed on the
different characteristics of the entry modes, discussed on the number of situational
influences and moderating factors, and presented a comprehensive model of understanding
with remarks on managerial implications.


Some of her arguments include the three broad grouping of the foreign entry modes that
should not have any other classification, unless it has similar meanings such that quoted
by some reference; and the five key characteristics of the entry modes that is similarly
supported by other authors such as Agarwal and Ramaswami 1992; Anderson and Gatignon 1986;
Douglas and Craig 1989; and etc.






4.0 Methods and evidence supporting the author's viewpoints

Driscoll’s methods and evidence is based on the centralized theory of the framework of
entry modes choices. The following are the various methods used and supporting evidence in
the framework model.



4.1 Modes of entry to international markets

According to Driscoll, there are 3 main foreign market entry methods; namely
export, contractual and investment modes, which is supported also by other authors like
Anderson and Gatignon's (1986), Root's (1987) and Young's (1989).


These three methods encompass a broad area for a firm that is planning to enter into
foreign market. As Driscoll explains, export modes can include either a direct export from
its local market to the foreign market or an indirect involvement through an appointed
trading house.


Then, in a contractual entry mode, a firm can arrange various methods such as licensing,
franchising, turnkey projects, non-equity joint ventures and etc. to tap into its
international market. In general, this method reduces the level of equity investment and
direct participation by the firm. However, some evidence that Driscoll related, such that
for franchising, where Burton and Cross (1995) argued that there are possibilities of
higher level international involvement and equity investment by the firm.


Then, investment modes are methods used for some form of ownership by the firm in the
foreign market. For instance, the investments may involve acquisition, merger or
greenfield strategy and joint ventures basis, where Driscoll quoted some reference from
Kogut and Singh (1988).



4.2 Characteristics of different entry modes

Driscoll proposed that the key characteristics of the entry modes methods are level of
control, dissemination risk, resource commitment, flexibility and ownership. These
characteristics are also supported by many authors such as Agarwal and Ramaswami 1992;
Anderson and Gatignon 1986; Douglas and Craig 1989; and etc.


As Driscoll argues that control is the key functionality for a firm to maximize its
economic efficiency and return of investment in international markets. This was also
supported by Hill et al. (1990) where control allows firm to directly manage its operation
and decision making which would ensures desired level of achievement in its whole
operation and target market.


The next method relates to the risk of disseminating the firm’s knowledge asset to its
contractual partner. Driscoll explains that protecting the firm’s know-how asset is
critical to avoid unnecessary threats of survival for the firm. She quoted Williamson
(1985) where risk can be minimized through comprehensive contingent contracts and
continuous improvement of technology in products or services would gain a long term
competitive advantage.



The following entry mode method is resource commitment. Driscoll pointed out that there is
a high tendency for firms to commit more business resources as the international business
progress. This was supported by Johanson and Vahne (1977) in the Uppsala
Internationalization Model as a firm needs to increase its resources commitment when it
becomes more experienced and knowledgeable about the foreign markets. The commitment
involves financial and physical cost, opportunity cost, and unforeseen risks and threats;
for instance, threat of employee abduction and hostile occurrence.



Flexibility is another substantial method that has inverse relation to the former method.
According to Driscoll, a firm needs to be flexible in changing its entry modes quickly and
efficiently, and thus gaining better competitive edge in the market. Her statements was
also supported by Porter (1976) on the concept of flexible exits barriers strategy, while
Klein (1989) added that firms should have less formalized and centralized organization
structures to adapt to its dynamic environment.


The final entry mode is ownership where Driscoll argues that by having full equity
ownership, a firm should have greater control as compare to sharing that causes risk
dissemination. Gatignon and Anderson (1988) asserted that ownership should have a direct
relation to the amount of control, however there are cases where control can be achieved
despite the above argument. For example, McDonald’s standardized franchise business.



In relation to the above entry modes, Driscoll summarized a comparison of the entry modes
characteristics across the generic foreign entry modes (refer to Appendix B). Some of the
significant analysis includes the ideal level of entry modes characteristics through
investment modes but has low level of flexibility, then exporting method that gives higher
degree of flexibility despite the drawbacks of other modes, and contractual modes that
facilitates as intermediate level for all the modes of entry as compare to the former
methods.


Some of the evidences supported in the article are by Erramilli and Rao (1993) and Klein
(1989) that emphasizes on the needs of firm to weigh the factors (actual environment) that
could affect their desired level of characteristic when making entry mode choices.
Continues for 8 more pages >>




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