Journal of International Entrepreneurship

, Volume 16, Issue 1, pp 82–108 | Cite as

The birth and development of a born global industry: The case of microelectronics in Norway

  • Arild Aspelund
  • Mohammad Javadinia Azari
  • Andreas Flåt Aglen
  • Sondre Gullord Graff
Article
  • 239 Downloads

Abstract

It seems beyond discussion that nations benefit greatly from having internationally competitive knowledge-based or technology-intensive industries. However, the question of how to create and nurture such industries is still debated, and various schools offer different recipes. This study takes an international entrepreneurship approach to investigate the emergence of an industry that seeks international competitiveness and growth from inception—a born global industry. The case is the Norwegian microelectronics industry, which is a successful, profitable, and globally competitive industry, but interestingly also an industry that Norway has very few preconditions to have. The purpose of the study is to understand why this industry emerged in Norway and the underpinnings of its international competitiveness and growth. The study adopts a historical multilevel case study approach that tracks the story of the key entrepreneurs, their firms and competitors, and the key institutions that they have interacted with. The study concludes that, from a structural condition or path dependency point of view, few factors would suggest the establishment of this industry in Norway. Rather, the emergence of this industry seems to be based on a knowledge platform created by the state, and subsequently turned into robust international business activities through the work of a handful of very ambitious and extremely technically competent international entrepreneurs with global visions for all their business activities. The findings support the pivotal role of the state not only in building knowledge platforms, but also in nurturing an environment where international entrepreneurs can thrive. Hence, this study justifies the study of emerging industries and the competitiveness of nations within the framework of international entrepreneurship and encourages more research on the societal and economic effects of international entrepreneurship.

Keywords

International entrepreneurship International business Born global industries International new ventures Born globals Economic development 

Abstracto

Las naciones se benefician enormemente de tener industrias competitivas a nivel internacional con alto contenido tecnológico. Esta afirmación parece fuera de discusión. Sin embargo, la forma de crear y alimentar este tipo de industrias es todavía una cuestión de mucho debate, donde varias escuelas ofrecen diferentes recetas. Este estudio investiga la aparición de la industria “Born Global”—una industria que busca la competitividad internacional y el crecimiento desde el inicio. Nuestro caso es la industria de la microelectrónica noruega. Es una industria exitosa, rentable y competitiva a nivel mundial, y también una industria que Noruega tiene muy pocas condiciones previas para tener. El propósito es entender por qué esta industria se estableció en Noruega y las bases de su competitividad y el crecimiento internacional. Con el fin de hacer esto, el estudio adopta un diseño de estudio de caso de varios niveles históricos que rastrea la historia de los empresarios clave, sus empresas y las instituciones clave con las cuales han interactuado. El estudio concluye que, del punto de vista estructural, hay muy pocos factores que sugieren el establecimiento de esta industria en Noruega. Más bien, la aparición de esta industria parece basarse en una plataforma de conocimiento creada por el estado, y posteriormente se convirtió en sólidas actividades de negocios internacionales a través del trabajo de un puñado de empresarios internacionales muy ambiciosos y extremadamente técnicamente competentes con visiones globales para todas sus actividades de negocio. Los hallazgos no sólo respaldan el papel fundamental del Estado en la construcción de plataformas de conocimiento, pero también en el fomento de un entorno donde los empresarios internacionales puedan prosperar. Por lo tanto, este estudio justifica el estudio de las industrias emergentes y la competitividad de las naciones en el marco de la iniciativa empresarial internacional y alienta más investigación sobre los efectos sociales y económicos de la iniciativa empresarial internacional.

Palabras clave

Emprendimiento internacional Negocios internacionales Born global industries Empresas nuevas internacionales Born globals Desarrollo económico 

Abstrakt

Nationen profitieren in hohem Maße von international wettbewerbsfähigen wissensbasierten oder technologieintensiven Industrien. Diese Aussage scheint unstrittig. Wie jedoch solche Industrien hervorzubringen und zu fördern sind, ist eine weiterhin viel debattierte Frage, für die verschiedene Fachbereiche unterschiedliche Modelle anbieten. Diese Studie untersucht die Entstehung einer Born Global Industrie - eine Branche, die internationale Wettbewerbsfähigkeit und Wachstum ab der Gründung anstrebt. Unser Fall untersucht die norwegische Mikroelektronik-Industrie. Es ist eine erfolgreiche, profitable und global wettbewerbsfähige Industrie, gleichzeitig jedoch eine Branche, für deren Bestehen Norwegen nur sehr wenige Grundvoraussetzungen besitzt. Ziel dieser Arbeit ist zu verstehen, weshalb sie in Norwegen entwickelt wurde und was die Grundlagen ihrer internationalen Wettbewerbsfähigkeit und ihres Wachstums sind. Um dies zu ergründen, verwendet die Studie den Ansatz einer historischen Multi-Level-Fallstudie, mit welcher sie die Geschichte der zentralen Unternehmer, ihrer Firmen sowie der wichtigsten Institutionen, mit denen diese interagiert haben, verfolgt. Die Studie kommt zu dem Schluss, dass hinsichtlich der strukturellen Bedingungen oder Pfadabhängigkeiten wenige Faktoren auf die Entwicklung dieser Industrie in Norwegen hindeuten würden. Vielmehr scheint die Entstehung dieser Branche auf einer staatlich geschaffenen Wissensplattform zu basieren, aus welcher sich heraus eine solide Geschäftstätigkeit entwickelte, die getragen wurde von einer Handvoll ehrgeiziger und technisch äußerst kompetenten Unternehmern mit globalen Visionen für all ihre Geschäftsbereiche. Die gewonnenen Erkenntnisse unterstützen die zentrale Rolle des Staates bei der Schaffung von Wissensplattformen, wie auch bei der Pflege eines Umfelds, in dem internationale Unternehmer gedeihen können. Daher rechtfertigt diese Untersuchung das Studium der aufstrebenden Industrien und die Wettbewerbsfähigkeit der Nationen im Zusammenhang von internationalem Unternehmertum und ermuntert zu mehr Forschung über die gesellschaftlichen und wirtschaftlichen Auswirkungen von internationalen Unternehmern.

Schlüsselwörter

International entrepreneurship International business Born global industries International new ventures Born globals Wirtschaftliche entwicklung 

Résumé

Les nations profitent grandement d’avoir des entreprises hautement technologiques ou reposant sur les connaissances, qui sont compétitives hors de leurs frontières. Cette affirmation semble ne souffrir d’aucune contestation. Pourtant, la question de créer et de soutenir ces firmes reste toujours sujette à de nombreux débats, à propos desquels plusieurs écoles proposent différents axes de réponse. Cette étude porte sur l’émergence d’une Born Global industry – une industrie qui recherche une croissance et une compétitivité internationales dès son origine. Nous prenons l’exemple de l’industrie microélectronique norvégienne. Il s’agit d’une industrie prospère, fructueuse, compétitive à l’international, mais aussi une industrie dont la Norvège n’a que peu de raisons de détenir. La question est. de comprendre les raisons de son implantation en Norvège et de déterminer les éléments vecteurs de sa croissance et de sa compétitivité. Pour cela, ce cas d’étude adopte une approche résolument historique en reprenant le récit des entrepreneurs majeurs, de leurs entreprises, et des institutions importantes avec lesquelles ils ont interagi. Cette étude conclut que, d’un point de vue des conditions structurelles ou en prenant en compte le poids de l’histoire, peu de facteurs sont en mesure d’expliquer la création de cette industrie en Norvège. A fortiori, l’émergence de cette industrie semble reposer sur une base de connaissances fondée par l’état et transformée par la suite en de robustes activités commerciales internationales. Ceci grâce au travail d’une poignée d’entrepreneurs internationaux ambitieux, techniquement très compétents et possédant une vision globale de toutes leurs activités commerciales. Les résultats obtenus confortent le rôle primordial de l’état dans la fondation de connaissances mais aussi dans le maintien d’un environnement favorable à l’émergence d’entrepreneurs internationaux. De fait, cela justifie l’étude des industries émergentes ainsi que de la compétitivité des nations dans le cadre de l’entrepreneuriat et encourage des recherches sur les effets sociétaux et économiques de l’entrepreneuriat international.

Mots clefs

Entrepreneuriat international Commerce international Born global industry Nouvelles entreprises internationales Born globals Développement economique 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Arild Aspelund
    • 1
  • Mohammad Javadinia Azari
    • 1
  • Andreas Flåt Aglen
    • 1
  • Sondre Gullord Graff
    • 1
  1. 1.Department for Industrial Economics and Technology Management, Faculty of Economics and ManagementNorwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU)TrondheimNorway

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