Playing the game of catching-up: global strategy building in a Chinese company.

Article English OPEN
Zhu, Yi ; Lynch, Richard ; Jin, Zhongqi (2011)

Despite growing interest in emerging Chinese multinational corporations (MNCs), most previous studies have focused on the strategic content and end results of their internationalization strategies. There has been little or no research on the process by which some Chinese companies are beginning to build integrated global strategies. The purpose of this contribution is to identify issues with regard to the benefits, difficulties, the learning process and the adaptation associated with companies arriving much later than their well-established competitors in the context of the global television manufacturing industry. This research adopts a qualitative approach to examine the way that the Chinese company, TCL, has attempted to build a global strategy behind such rivals as Samsung and Panasonic over a period of 10 years. The findings show that a catch-up company may struggle to obtain the benefits of an integrated global strategy and may face greater difficulties than the existing players, particularly in learning to adjust to the company's new strategic direction. However, latecomers experience shorter learning processes than their well-established rivals, facilitated by advances in technology and by a better understanding of the globalization process. The evidence suggests that the development of existing resources, the learning of new skills and innovation by such companies will be important in the game of catch-up.
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