Connecting the dots: A multiple case study of the network relationships of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the non-traditional agricultural export (NTAE) sector of Ghana

R. Abban, S.W.F. Omta, J.B. Aheto, V.E. Scholten

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Purpose – Most research on networks of exporting SMEs has been conducted in developed economies. The present paper aims to apply this concept to a developing economy arguing that there is a combination of internal firm factors (human and physical capital, social and management team networks) that will lead to higher (past) performance in terms of firm size given different contextual factors (such as institutions and supply chain complexity). Design/methodology/approach – Ten SME case studies are analysed in the non-traditional agricultural export (NTAE) sector in Ghana. Findings – The findings suggest that performance is highest for those SMEs where the CEO has received tertiary level education and has export experience for over five years, which export directly (no use of traders), make extensive use of Ghana's export institutions, use export contracts and are members of SME associations. Research limitations/implications – Policy makers in Sub Saharan governments in general and Ghanaian government officials in particular can use these findings to focus their policy on these types of SMEs. Originality/value – Whereas most research on networks of exporting SMEs has been conducted in developed economies, this paper seeks to apply this concept to a developing economy. Policy makers and officials in government can use the findings to focus their policy on the types of SMEs where performance is high
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)74-94
JournalAfrican Journal of Economic and Management Studies
Volume4
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2013

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