Digital Entrepreneurial Internationalizers: Definitions, Theoretical Implications, and Research Avenues

Gabrielsson, Mika
Fraccastoro, Sara
Ojala, Arto
Rollins, Minna
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Recent research has advanced our understanding of digital entrepreneurship and how digitalization impacts on internationalization. However, we still lack a clear understanding of what constitutes a digital entrepreneurial internationalizer (DEI). This paper aims at filling this gap by bridging research on digital entrepreneurship and that on digital internationalization, and by augmenting their applicability to managerial phenomena. We do this by offering an improved definition and criteria to understand what constitutes a digital firm. Then, based on literature on digitalization, digital entrepreneurship, and international entrepreneurship, we conceptualize DEI according to the criteria of digital and internationalization earliness. That conceptualization means we can present a matrix, in which a new typology of the firm—the Born Global & Digital—emerges. We introduce examples of everyday successful business ventures that illustrate this and other types of DEIs. We then outline theoretical implications and future research avenues that could extend the conceptualization.
International Business and Born Digitals, digital, entrepreneurial, international business, born digitals
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