The Internationalisation Coin: A Tale of Two Perspectives
Abstract: Research on international entrepreneurship has recently gained traction as an increasing number of start-ups embark on the path of internationalisation at the earliest possible stage. When new firms embark on this quest, they still face the same resource constraints as they have in the past. As a result, they turn to their venture capitalists to help them overcome the obstacles in the process, especially the knowledge needs that underpin internationalisation. Using a qualitative multi-case study, we explore how the non-financial support between the venture capital firm and start-up is perceived by examining four types of knowledge needs as prerequisites for internationalisation. Our analysis shows that there are knowledge needs to which VC firms can respond with non-financial support successfully. However, we find a discrepancy in expectations regarding the scope and environment in which non-financial start-up support is provided. We also introduce and revise a framework that visualises our findings and opens avenues for future research. We also provide recommendations on how founders and VCs can overcome the discrepancy in the perceived value of non-financial support by understanding their respective perspectives.
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