Leveraging offshoring: The identification of new business opportunities in international settings

Federica Angeli*, Rosa Grimaldi

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This work aims to shed light on the process through which small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) identify new business opportunities within their ongoing offshoring activities. Empirical evidence is drawn on the case of think3, an Italian medium-sized software company that has been offshoring its R&D activities to Bangalore, India, since the year 2000. In 2004, the company started a brand new "global" business: from selling software solutions for computer-aided design, it began selling the engineering capabilities to use its solutions, leveraging highly qualified Indian mechanical engineers. Our analysis underlines three elements underpinning think3's ability in envisaging a new profitable business opportunity. These are its experiential knowledge of: (a) the markets, clients and competitors, (b) the offshore context, and (c) the internationalization process as a software house, embodied in the ability to promote offshore cultural integration and to align home and offshore operations. This study enables a better understanding of the factors triggering the recognition of new business opportunities by SMEs, at the international level.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)393-413
Number of pages21
JournalIndustry and Innovation
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 27 Aug 2010


  • Experiential international knowledge
  • International entrepreneurship
  • New opportunity identification
  • Offshoring of high-value activities
  • SMEs' internationalization

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