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Mikael Hilmersson, Martin Johanson, Heléne Lundberg, Stylianos Papaioannou and Aron Thyr

The development of international opportunities is a central catalyst of the firm internationalization process. Previous research has suggested a link between a firm’s network characteristics and the process with which it develops opportunities. In this chapter we integrate findings from the literature on international entrepreneurship with the network view on firm internationalization. We conceptualize the internationalization process by connecting the concepts of business network, firm strategy, international opportunity development and strategic outcomes. Four groups of propositions are developed on the direct and indirect relationships between these constructs. This contributes to the literature by conceptualizing the early stage of firm internationalization and laying the conceptual groundwork for future research examining and testing the ways in which different types of opportunities are developed and the strategies for firms to follow in this process.