Carmién Tea South Africa: International Entrepreneurship in a Born-Global Firm
(7 pages of text)
In September 2019, the founder of Carmién Tea, based in South Africa’s Western Cape province, faced a dilemma. Her company, founded in 1998, was a producer and supplier rooibos tea, which was unique to the mountainous area north of Cape Town. After a new South African government was elected in 1994, the deregulation of the agricultural industry enabled the founder to start a rooibos export company. This political environment and the founder's entrepreneurial orientation shaped both the firm’s origins and its early internationalization. As 98 per cent of the company’s sales were being exported and 84 per cent were still sold as bulk, the founder needed to determine whether the company had the resources and capabilities to ensure that the Carmién Tea brand and its value-added sales would grow in an increasingly competitive international environment. Where should she begin?
This case is intended for use in graduate-level courses on international business and entrepreneurship. After working through the case and assignment questions students will be able to do the following:
- Explain the importance of context in the emergence of entrepreneurship.
- Identify the antecedents and factors that contribute to international entrepreneurship, and explain how they lead to the emergence of a born-global firm.
- Evaluate a firm's internationalization behaviour by referring to the determinants and outcomes of a born-global firm.
- Identify resources and capabilities that contribute to the enhancement of international performance.
Agriculture, Forestry, Fishing and Hunting
South Africa, Medium, 2019
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