A Survey Of Internationalization Of Women-Owned Enterprises In Kenya
In the current era, technological advancements, declining trade barriers among others are driving the world economy to become more and more integrated and this rapid globalization is enabling women enterprises to become international in a fast way. The basis of this research was to describe the internationalization process of women enterprises in Kenya with a focus on the factors they took into consideration before internationalizing and their positions after internationalizing. As already noted in this research, research on entrepreneurship is moving from looking at whether gender makes a difference to how it makes a difference.The purpose of this research therefore was to conduct a survey of internationalization of women-owned enterprises in Kenya and in particular try to understand the process from domestic to international market, understand the factors that drove them to internationalize and factors considered in order to achieve that position. In addition, the study sought to explore what factors women enterprises considered while going international. The research shows that the main reasons for enterprises to internationalize are profit, expansion, market opportunity and to achieve growth. Findings also suggest that firms consider domestic market position to be important even if they are in early internationalization.The research also aimed to determine the factors influencing early internationalization of women-owned enterprises in Kenya. Both qualitative and quantitative research methods have been applied in this research. The data was collected by conducting interviews and descriptive statistics was used to analyze it.The research also shows that major reasons for enterprises to internationalize are profit, expansion, market opportunity and to achieve growth. Managerial motivation is also one of the main factors for enterprises to begin thinking about foreign expansion due to the founders experience in the international market. Findings also suggest that firms consider domestic market position to be important even if they are internationalized firms. The enterprises appear to be well established and in a fairly good position in the local market. It is also evident that the firms put significant emphasis on creating and maintaining networks in order to achieve internationalization.From this research, we also realize that already internationalized enterprises and the ones that are not, have a lot in common. First, the reasons to go international are revenue growth, expansion/growth and market opportunity. Second, motivation derived from the founders is one important factor for the firms as the ambition of the founder is what drives the enterprise. Third, local market position seems to be really important for both types of enterprises. A review of some of the theories covered in literature review shows that network theory was proposed after Uppsala model was widely criticized and that the entrepreneurship in a way is the mixture of both of these theories, that is relationships can be part of opportunities that the entrepreneur will take advantage of and carefully commit his/her available resources to achieve growth.