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2016 | t. 17, z. 6, cz. 2 Firmy rodzinne - wyzwania współczesności | 71--91
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Internationalisation Strategies in the Family-owned Businesses - Evidence from Poland

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The empirical research was to identify the internationalization strategies in the family-owned business and to analyse the internal factors in family-owned business, which can impact the choice of the certain internationalization strategy. The research had a qualitative character. It was conducted on thirty Polish family-owned companies with their headquarters across the whole country. For the research the method of direct interview was used and it was conducted with 30 family-owned companies owners. The interviews lasted from January 2014 to April 2014. The interviews indicate the most common internationalization strategies: strategy of market development and exploration strategy. 25 enterprises owners have indicated those strategies as leading internationalization strategies in the company activity (compare table No.3). 4 of the owners have indicated only the markets development and 10 admit to concentration strategy. Among analysed family-owned enterprises did not appear such internationalization strategies, as defensive strategy, diversification strategy, skimming or dumping strategies. The research has confirmed that family-owned enterprises are characterized by a desire to maintain control over the company in the family hands. This is indicated also by the fact, that in above 30 family-owned enterprises sample, all in 100% are the family property. Up to 25 of family-owned enterprises owners admitted, that when it comes to decision on foreign cooperation the crucial is the ability to control a certain strategy by the family. The control is thought, as an enterprise property or as a possibility of possession a decisive voice, especially in the enterprise strategy. The study allowed us to observe the following relations that may be important for policy makers, family business owners, managers in family businesses and advisors. First of all, the family has a significant influence on the choice of the internationalisation strategy. Evidence also shows that the greater experience in the local market, then the greater is the willingness of undertaking an external expansion. The next generation risen-up in the spirit of the enterprise and educated in the consciousness of existing a global market will end eavour to undertake or develop already started internationalisation. The strong and compact organization causes, that the family-owned companies are more willing to undertake a certain, long-term cooperation. The choices of the international expansion strategies confirmed, that the family-owned enterprises follow the willingness to maintain the control in the family hands, endeavour to minimize the risk and also to establish a long-term forms of cooperation. The presented examination identifies familyowned companies internationalisation strategies and analyzes the internal factors, which determine the choice of the certain strategy. The examination has also shown the relation between the characteristics of family-owned companies and the choice and realization of a certain enterprise internationalization strategy. (original abstract)
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