1 - Why study emerging-market multinationals?  pp. 3-22

Why study emerging-market multinationals?

By Ravi Ramamurti

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As developing and transition economies opened up to the global economy in recent years, a number of local firms not only survived the battle for markets at home, they expanded internationally through exports and foreign direct investment (FDI) to become fledgling multinational enterprises (MNEs) in their own right. By 2007, the more prominent emerging-market MNEs (hereafter referred to as EMNEs) included firms such as China's Huawei in telecommunications equipment, Mexico's Cemex in cement, Russia's Gazprom in energy, India's Tata Consultancy Services in information technology (IT) services, and Brazil's Embraer in regional jets. Many more firms in emerging economies were preparing to go down the same path in the future. Business magazines, such as BusinessWeek (2006) and the Economist (2007), trumpeted this trend with cover stories on “emerging giants” or “globalization's offspring” and illustrated the disruptive effects EMNEs were having on established Western multinationals. Consulting companies, such as McKinsey & Co. and the Boston Consulting Group (BCG), also took notice of these potential clients. There was a parallel increase in studies on EMNEs by international business (IB) scholars, although no consensus emerged on whether and how EMNEs differed from multinationals that had come before.

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