Stage theory argues that firms expand exports incrementally and, in the process, pass through a series of increasingly more resource intensive export channels. This paper tests this hypothesis for NSW regional exporters in the period 1996/97 to 2000/01. Consistent with other studies, we found general support for incremental export expansion, and that firms added more sophisticated export modes as commitment increased. However, they did not discard earlier modes in this process. One major contradiction to stage theory lay with ‘born global’ firms, which move immediately to high export ratios. A second more unexpected one lay with long term, intensive exporters, which persisted in using simple modes such as direct exporting.
ANZSRC / FoR Code
1205 URBAN AND REGIONAL PLANNING