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Saul Estrin and Klaus E. Meyer

Firms seeking specific complementary resources to pursue their growth strategy in emerging markets may use ‘brownfield’ acquisitions to provide access to resources that are embedded in existing firms. This strategy requires a fundamental restructuring of the acquired firm to replace many of its resources and organizational structures. In this paper, we review the concept of brownfield acquisition, establish its empirical relevance outside of transition economies, explore its theoretical and empirical antecedents, and discuss its implications for theorizing in international business. Our empirical results based on a six-country survey in emerging markets show that brownfield acquisitions are most likely for projects that are more integrated with the parent’s global operations, and where local firms are weak and institutions are strong. The concept provides a focal point for research on the resource-based view by illuminating the process of resource combination in firm growth. It also provides an example of where different aspects of the institutional framework may have contrary effects on various elements of business strategy.

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Ruta Aidis and Saul Estrin

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Saul Estrin and Sumon Kumar Bhaumik

This chapter identifies the key differences between reporting empirical research in journals belonging to the field of economics, and of management. Our focus is restricted to empirical papers; we do not consider purely theoretical research in either field. In the case of theory papers, the differences are equally pronounced, but are somewhat different. We also focus attention on top journals in economics and management respectively, by which we mean either leading general journals or top of their field journals. The differences are similar in less highly ranked journals but are less sharply drawn.

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Saul Estrin and Sumon Kumar Bhaumik

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Saul Estrin and Adam Rosevear

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Alan Bevan, Saul Estrin and Klaus Meyer

Institutions are widely regarded as a crucial locational advantage of host countries aiming to attract foreign investors. However, there is little agreement on which institutions matter, and why. This study contributes to filling this gap by analyzing the impact of different dimensions of the newly created institutional framework in East European transition economies on foreign direct investment (FDI). Using a dataset detailing FDI flows from individual market economies to transition ones, we examine the relationship between institutional development and FDI inflow. We find that FDI is positively related to the quality of formal institutions, though an impact from informal institutions can only be shown for the special case of Russia, which has suffered from a gap between the extensiveness and effectiveness of legal reform. Several specific formal institutions are found to influence FDI: private ownership of business, banking sector reform, foreign exchange and trade liberalization, and legal development. Conversely, domestic price liberalization, non-bank financial sector development and competition policy do not enhance FDI. These results point to important complementarities, but also potential conflicts, between policy reform and the interest of multinational firms.

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Saul Estrin, Klaus E. Meyer and Adeline Pelletier

Multinational Enterprises (MNEs) from emerging economies (EEs) are establishing operations in advanced economies (AEs), apparently departing from traditional models of internationalization. We explore an underexplored difference between EE MNE and their AE counterparts concerning their country of origin: EEs have less munificent business environments. This leads EE MNEs to make different location choices than AE MNEs when entering AEs, specifically because they are more deterred by barriers to entry. We therefore predict EE MNEs to be relatively more deterred by distance and weak intellectual property protection and relatively more attracted by diaspora of migrants and by markets. Our empirical results are consistent with these predictions.

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Klaus E. Meyer, Saul Estrin, Sumon Kumar Bhaumik and Mike W. Peng

We investigate the impact of market-supporting institutions on business strategies by analyzing the entry strategies of foreign investors entering emerging economies. We apply and advance the institution-based view of strategy by integrating it with resource-based considerations. In particular, we show how resource-seeking strategies are pursued using different entry modes in different institutional contexts. Alternative modes of entry - greenfield, acquisition, and joint venture (JV) - allow firms to overcome different kinds of market inefficiencies related to both characteristics of the resources and to the institutional context. In a weaker institutional framework, JVs are used to access many resources, but in a stronger institutional framework, JVs become less important while acquisitions can play a more important role in accessing resources that are intangible and organizationally embedded. Combining survey and archival data from four emerging economies, India, Vietnam, South Africa, and Egypt, we provide empirical support for our hypotheses. Copyright @ 2008 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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Saul Estrin, Klaus E. Meyer, Bo B. Nielsen and Sabina Nielsen

National institutions shape the ability of civil society and minority shareholders to monitor and influence decision-makers in listed state owned enterprises (SOEs), and thereby their strategies of internationalization. We argue that the weaker are such controls, the more likely such decision makers pursue self-serving motives, and thus shy away from international investment. Listed SOEs’ strategies will thus be more similar to those of wholly privately owned enterprises (POEs) when these controls are more effective. Building on Williamson’s (2000) hierarchy of institutions, we examine how home country institutions exerting normative, regulatory, and governance-related controls affect the comparative internationalization levels of listed SOEs and POEs. Based on a matched sample of 153 majority state owned and 153 wholly privately owned listed firms from 40 different countries, we confirm that, when home country institutions enable effective control, the internationalization strategies of listed SOEs and POEs converge.