This research presents a model to describe the stages of the internationalization process, and its potential link to performance, based on cluster analysis of data from 200 interviews with Spanish companies. The results show four initial phases in internationalization that are similar to those found in earlier research, but also a new stage at the end of the process, "Globalization," which has not been reported before. Firm performance in relation to the stages of internationalization is analyzed using eight indicators, which yield somewhat different results for distinct measures of international versus overall performance. The data also show a non-monotonic "valleys and peaks" relationship of performance across the five stages, suggesting that firms face critical challenges at key points during their international expansion. The study concludes with an outline of implications for business and public policy as well as suggested directions for future research.

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Keywords Export performance, International business, International marketing, International performance, Internationalization
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Journal Journal of Euromarketing
Martín Martín, O. (Oscar), & Papadopoulos, N. (2006). Internationalization and performance: Evidence from spanish firms. Journal of Euromarketing, 16(1-2), 87–103. doi:10.1300/J037v16n01_07