The Regional Sales of Multinationals in the World Cosmetics Industry
Chang Hoon Oh
Alan M. Rugman
regionalism, regional strategy, cosmetics industry, firm specific advantage, Avon, Gucci
This paper analyzes the regional characteristics and strategies of multinational enterprises (MNEs) in the world cosmetics and toiletries industry, based on the new work by Rugman on regional strategy. We test the proposition that MNEs may asymmetrically develop their upstream and downstream firm specific advantages (FSAs). We find that the upstream activities of the MNEs in cosmetics are home region based but that downstream activities are less so. Further, the asymmetry of FSAs in the world cosmetics industry is mainly due to the atypical Asian entry strategies of North American and West European cosmetics MNEs. Two case studies confirm how variations in FSAs can affect regional strategy.