International Business Question and Answers

Explain the Business Entry Strategies into Foreign Markets.


When expanding into foreign markets, businesses have several entry strategies to consider. These strategies vary in terms of risk, control, investment, and level of involvement. Here are some common business entry strategies into foreign markets:

  1. Exporting:
    • Direct Exporting: The company directly sells its products to customers in the foreign market. It may establish a local sales team or use distributors or agents for distribution.
    • Indirect Exporting: The company utilizes intermediaries, such as export agents or trading companies, to handle export activities.
  2. Licensing:
    • Licensing allows a company to grant the rights to use its intellectual property, such as patents, trademarks, or technology, to a foreign company in exchange for royalties or other compensation. The licensee produces and sells the licensed products or services in the foreign market.
  3. Franchising:
    • Franchising involves granting the rights to operate a business model, brand, and systems to a foreign franchisee. The franchisee pays fees and royalties to the franchisor and operates under the established brand and guidelines.
  4. Joint Ventures:
    • Joint ventures involve forming a partnership or joint entity with a local company in the foreign market. The companies share ownership, control, risks, and profits. This strategy allows for shared resources, local market knowledge, and risk mitigation.
  5. Strategic Alliances:
    • Strategic alliances are collaborative agreements between two or more companies to pursue a specific business opportunity in a foreign market. It can involve sharing resources, technology, distribution channels, or marketing efforts while maintaining separate identities.
  6. Foreign Direct Investment (FDI):
    • FDI involves establishing a physical presence in the foreign market by directly investing in facilities, operations, and assets. This can be done through setting up wholly-owned subsidiaries or acquiring existing companies in the foreign market.
  7. Greenfield Investment:
    • Greenfield investment refers to building new facilities and operations from scratch in the foreign market. This strategy offers full control and customization but requires significant investment and time.
  8. Mergers and Acquisitions (M&A):
    • M&A involves acquiring or merging with an existing company in the foreign market to gain market share, access to resources, distribution networks, or technology. This strategy allows for quick market entry and growth.
  9. E-commerce and Digital Platforms:
    • Leveraging digital platforms and e-commerce channels can provide a cost-effective and efficient way to enter foreign markets. Companies can sell products online, establish partnerships with local e-commerce platforms, or utilize digital marketplaces.

The choice of entry strategy depends on factors such as market characteristics, industry dynamics, resources, competitive landscape, and risk tolerance. It is crucial for companies to conduct thorough market research, assess the pros and cons of each strategy, and align their entry strategy with their business objectives and capabilities. Adaptation to local cultures, regulations, and market conditions is also critical for successful entry into foreign markets.

Discuss the appropriate foreign business entry strategy for the organization in which you work for. Assuming a Pharmaceutical company.


As a pharmaceutical company considering international expansion, the appropriate foreign business entry strategy would depend on various factors such as market conditions, regulatory environment, competitive landscape, available resources, and strategic objectives. However, one potential entry strategy that could be suitable for a pharmaceutical company is as follows:

  1. Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) – Establishing Wholly-Owned Subsidiaries:
    • Given the sensitive nature of the pharmaceutical industry and the need for control over manufacturing, quality, and distribution, establishing wholly-owned subsidiaries through FDI can be a viable strategy.
    • This strategy allows the company to have full ownership and control over operations, intellectual property, and decision-making processes.
    • By setting up subsidiaries, the company can build its presence and brand in the target market, customize operations to local requirements, and maintain consistent quality standards.

Factors to consider when implementing this strategy:

  1. Market Analysis:
    • Conduct thorough market research to identify target markets with high demand for pharmaceutical products, favorable regulatory frameworks, and growth potential.
    • Assess market size, competition, reimbursement systems, pricing regulations, and intellectual property protection to evaluate market attractiveness.
  2. Regulatory Compliance:
    • Understand the regulatory environment of the target market, including drug approvals, clinical trial requirements, marketing and labeling regulations, and import/export regulations.
    • Comply with local regulations and establish robust quality control systems to ensure compliance with international standards and local requirements.
  3. Local Partnerships and Relationships:
    • Develop relationships with local healthcare professionals, hospitals, clinics, and distributors to understand market dynamics, gain market insights, and establish distribution networks.
    • Collaborate with local research institutions, universities, and key opinion leaders to support research and development efforts and foster credibility in the local market.
  4. Manufacturing and Supply Chain:
    • Assess the need for local manufacturing capabilities based on market demand, cost considerations, and regulatory requirements.
    • Establish partnerships with local suppliers and distributors to ensure efficient supply chain management, logistics, and timely delivery of products.
  5. Intellectual Property Protection:
    • Safeguard intellectual property rights through patents, trademarks, and other legal mechanisms in the target market to protect innovations and prevent unauthorized use.
  6. Talent Management and Localization:
    • Hire local talent and build a diverse workforce that understands the local market, language, culture, and regulations.
    • Develop training programs to enhance local expertise, ensure compliance, and align with the company’s global standards.

It’s important to note that this is just one possible entry strategy, and a pharmaceutical company should assess its specific circumstances and consult with industry experts, legal advisors, and market research professionals to make an informed decision on the most appropriate entry strategy for its international expansion.

Analyze the strategic reasons with relations to organizational competence determining the entry strategy of the organization.


When determining the entry strategy for international expansion, strategic reasons related to organizational competence play a crucial role. Organizational competence refers to a company’s unique set of capabilities, resources, and knowledge that give it a competitive advantage in the market. Here are some strategic reasons tied to organizational competence that influence the choice of entry strategy:

  1. Core Competencies:
    • The entry strategy should align with the organization’s core competencies, which are its distinctive capabilities and expertise. Leveraging core competencies allows the company to differentiate itself and create value in the target market.
    • For example, if a pharmaceutical company has expertise in research and development, it may opt for an entry strategy that involves licensing or joint ventures to leverage its R&D capabilities while benefiting from local partners’ market knowledge and distribution networks.
  2. Manufacturing and Supply Chain Capabilities:
    • If the organization has strong manufacturing capabilities and efficient supply chain systems, it may consider an entry strategy that involves establishing its own production facilities or acquiring existing manufacturing facilities in the target market.
    • This allows the company to have better control over quality, cost, and supply chain management, thereby ensuring timely delivery and maintaining competitive advantage.
  3. Intellectual Property and Technological Expertise:
    • Companies with valuable intellectual property, patents, or technological expertise may choose an entry strategy that allows them to protect and exploit their innovations.
    • Licensing or franchising agreements can enable the organization to share its intellectual property with local partners while generating revenue and expanding its reach in the target market.
  4. Branding and Marketing Strength:
    • If the organization has a strong brand and marketing capabilities, it may opt for an entry strategy that focuses on direct exporting or e-commerce to maintain control over branding and customer relationships.
    • Leveraging the brand reputation and marketing expertise can help penetrate the market and build customer loyalty, especially in markets where brand recognition and reputation are important factors.
  5. Human Resources and Organizational Culture:
    • The availability of skilled talent and the organization’s ability to manage and develop a diverse workforce can influence the entry strategy.
    • If the organization has strong human resource management capabilities and a culture of adaptability, it may choose an entry strategy that involves establishing wholly-owned subsidiaries or joint ventures to have direct control over talent development, organizational culture, and strategic alignment.
  6. Financial Resources:
    • The organization’s financial strength and resources play a significant role in determining the entry strategy.
    • Strategies such as foreign direct investment (FDI) or mergers and acquisitions (M&A) require substantial financial investments, while strategies like licensing or franchising may require fewer financial resources.

Overall, the choice of entry strategy should be driven by a careful analysis of the organization’s core competencies, resources, and capabilities. By aligning the entry strategy with the organization’s strengths, the company can leverage its competitive advantages and enhance its chances of success in the target market. It’s essential to evaluate the market dynamics, regulatory environment, competitive landscape, and cultural factors to select the most suitable entry strategy that maximizes the organization’s competencies and positions it for sustainable growth.



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