Handbook of Research on European Business and Entrepreneurship
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Handbook of Research on European Business and Entrepreneurship

Towards a Theory of Internationalization

Edited by Léo-Paul Dana, Isabell M. Welpe, Mary Han and Vanessa Ratten

This unique Handbook illustrates how entrepreneurs across Europe tackle internationalization. This timely and important book identifies patterns and builds a theory of international entrepreneurship in Europe.
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Chapter 32: The Internationalization of Small and Medium Companies in San Marino

Donata Vianelli


Donata Vianelli Introduction International expansion provides new and potentially more profitable opportunities for small and medium enterprises which are involved in a process of continuous development necessary to compete and grow in the global arena. Internationalization is not a simple phenomenon and, especially for SMEs, it is not limited to the field of economic exchanges and transactions but it encompasses politics, society and culture (Nanut and Tracogna, 2003). All these aspects can significantly influence the degree of internationalization as well as the mode of entry and the choice of appropriate strategies necessary to be competitive in foreign markets. But what happens if a SME not only faces the limits (and the advantages) of its business structure and organization but also affords the complexity of operating in a small independent country? The purpose of this study is to provide a comprehensive analysis of the internationalization of the companies operating in the Republic of San Marino, the third-smallest state in Europe after the Vatican City and Monaco. This analysis seems to be particularly significant for two main reasons. First of all, in recent years, San Marino has strongly developed its international relations in order to promote exports and also to attract new economic investments in the country. The Republic is strongly aware not only of the social, political and economical benefits determined by exporting, such as the creation of jobs, the stimuli to economic growth and the improving of the balance of payments, but also of...

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