When geography matters: International diversification and firm performance of spanish multinationals

Xavier Mendoza, Christian Espinosa-Méndez, Luis Araya-Castillo

Research output: Indexed journal article Articlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


This paper studies how the nature and shape of the relationship between inter-national diversification (ID) and performance (P) may vary according to a firm’s geographical focus of internationalization. Using a sample of Spanish multinational firms for the 2004—2012 period we find an M-shaped relationship. However, significant differences are found when the different geographical foci of internationalization are considered. Strong support is found when firms adopt a regional focus (an inverted S-curve when the ID measure refers to the number of foreign countries and an M-curve when it refers to the size of the network of foreign sub-sidiaries), a biregional focus (an S-curve) and a semiglobal focus (an inverted S-curve but also an M-curve with foreign subsidiaries). These findings and their pattern suggest the critical impor-tance of the country of origin and the geographical focus of internationalization in explaining the relationship between ID—P.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-17
Number of pages17
JournalBRQ Business Research Quarterly
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • Firm performance
  • Geographical focus
  • International diversification
  • M-curve
  • Multinational firms
  • Spain


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