University of Oulu

The internationalization of finnish e-commerce companies : factors affecting success

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Author: Riski, Ville1
Organizations: 1University of Oulu, Oulu Business School, Department of Management and International Business, Management
Format: ebook
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 3.1 MB)
Pages: 93
Persistent link:
Language: English
Published: Oulu : V. Riski, 2020
Publish Date: 2020-06-24
Thesis type: Master's thesis
Tutor: Hurmelinna-Laukkanen, Pia
Reviewer: Hurmelinna-Laukkanen, Pia
Olaleye, Sunday


This thesis examines the phenomenon of the internationalization of Finnish companies operating in the e-commerce retail business and what are the factors that have had an effect on their success. The study aims to discover what kind of different factors are relevant and vital when an e-commerce company pursues for growth, profits and success in terms of its internationalization pursuits. Additionally, this thesis aims to solve whether there are theoretical perspectives or theories that could explain the internationalization pursuits of e-commerce companies. Furthermore, the study aims to investigate and discover how the Finnish e-commerce companies have succeeded in their internationalization pursuits with respect to financial growth and performance.

The research was conducted as a qualitative study, utilizing the abductive research analysis method. The research was initiated with a literature review, where theoretical perspectives regarding the key concepts, e-commerce and internationalization, were examined. Furthermore, relevant internationalization theories have been researched, as well as factors that may have an influence on the internationalization success of e-commerce companies. The thesis was continued with an empirical research section, in which Finnish e-commerce companies were interviewed. The interview replies were analysed and reflected against the theoretical findings discovered from the literature review.

The success factors discovered from the empirical research were found as encompassing and complementary with respect to the factors that emerged from the literature review. The most suitable theories to explain the internationalization pursuits of e-commerce companies with respect to the literature review were the born globals theory and the N-OLI paradigm. In terms of further analysis regarding the complementarity of the empirical research results with regards to the theories examined in the literature review, the outcome was considered as partly consistent. The research results with regards to the Finnish e-commerce companies’ financial performance and growth in terms of internationalization, indicated that growth and success have been reached to some extent. However, further studies would be advisable to conduct to gain a more encompassing view.

In light of theoretical and practical implications, the findings in terms of success factors can be seen as beneficial to Finnish e-commerce companies considering internationalization. The internationalization pursuits of Finnish e-commerce companies is a scarcely studied subject in Finland, which is why the research results can be seen as scientifically and theoretically contributing.

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