Published PapersRay, Sougata.,Mondal, Arindam., Ramachandran, Kavil. (2018) "How does Family Involvement Affect a Firm's Internationalisation? An Investigation of Indian Family Firms", Global Strategy Journal, 8 (1), 73 - 105Read Abstract >Close >Research Summary: We investigate whether and how family ownership and management influence firms' internationalization strategies in an emerging economy in which family firms are dominant. Anchoring on the willingness and ability framework and drawing on the socioemotional wealth perspective and agency theory, we theorize how the heterogeneity among family firms in their ownership structures, concentration, and family involvement in management shapes the firms' internationalization strategies. We also theorize how certain contingencies, such as the presence of foreign institutional ownership and family management, moderate the relationship between family ownership and internationalization strategy. We test our predictions by using a proprietary, longitudinal panel dataset of 303 leading family firms from India and find support for most of our theoretical predictions. Managerial Summary: Internationalization has emerged as a dominant strategy for firms in a globally interconnected world. We observe that ownership structure and management have significant bearing on internationalization strategies of family firms, as family owners and managers are more averse to internationalization. Family firms' aversion to internationalize is more pronounced when families can exercise greater control on firms' actions through the combined effect of higher family ownership (primarily through strategic control) and family's participation in management (through strategic, administrative, and operational control). However, certain contingencies, such as the higher ownership of foreign institutions and presence of professional managers, help business families improve their understanding of international markets, reduce the fear of the unknown, and better appreciate the benefits of internationalization, thereby aiding greater internationalization of family firms.

Published PapersLampel, Joseph.,Bhalla, Ajay., Ramachandran, Kavil. (2017) "Family Values and Inter-Institutional Governance of Strategic Decision Making in Indian Family Firms", Asia Pacific Journal of ManagementRead Abstract >Close >In this paper we use new venture creation in Indian family firms to explore the family firm as an inter-institutional system. We argue that in societies where the traditional family dominates social and economic life, the relationship between the two institutions, the firm and the family, is managed via inter-institutional logics. These inter-institutional logics help reconcile the tensions that often arise in the family firms during strategic decision-making. We use archival and interview data on thirty-six new ventures in eight Indian family firms to identify these logics. Our analysis shows that the interaction between firm and family institutional logics in Indian family firms generates four sub-logics: Economic, Expertise, Reputation and Attachment. These four logics are used to frame and screen new venture opportunities and justify resource allocation

Published PapersRamachandran, Kavil. (2014) "Institution Building: Experiences, Lessons and Challenges", The IUP Journal of Management Research, , Vol. XIII (No 1, 2014)
Published PapersRamachandran, Kavil., Marisetty, Vijay Bhaskar. (2009) "Governance Challenges for Family Controlled Firms while Globalizing", The Indian Journal of Industrial Relations, 45 (1), 54-61
Published PapersRamachandran, Kavil., Ray, Sougata. (2006) "Networking and Resource Strategies in New Ventures: a study of information technology start-ups", Journal of Entrepreneurship, 15 (2), 146-168Read Abstract >Close >While the network theory and the resource-based view of the firm has emerged as a dominant paradigm of management research, entrepreneurship researchers continue to show limited interest in studying resource strategies and the role of network in building dynamic capabilities in entrepreneurial start-ups. Scant discussion is available in extant literature on the dynamics of new venture resource strategy to explain how entrepreneurs continuously augment, manage and develop resources to match the shifting product-market strategy and use networks in doing so on a sustainable basis. This article, based on an analysis of two Information Technology (IT) start-ups, explores the innovative and dynamic resource and networking strategies such firms follow. An attempt has been made to conceptualise and explain how these firms maintain flexibility in resources by using the network mode of organisation in order to avoid strategic rigidity and craft strategies that are suited to the high velocity environment. Several propositions have been developed and practical implications have been drawn in this regard.

Published PapersRamachandran, Kavil., T P Devarajan, Ray, Sougata. (2006) "Corporate Entrepreneurship: How?", Vikalpa, 31 (1), 85-97Read Abstract >Close >Most organizations find that their ability to identify and innovatively exploit opportunities decreases as they move from the entrepreneurial to the growth phase. However, the key to success in the highly competitive and dynamic environment that most companies presently operate in is to retain this ability. Therefore, companies need to adopt an entrepreneurial strategy — seeking competitive advantage through continuous innovation to effectively exploit identified opportunities — in order to sustain and grow under such circumstances. For such a strategy to succeed, companies should develop an enabling economic and political ecosystem that does not impede small or large scale redeployment of resources in new ways towards creative, entrepreneurial ends. Companies have a range of options to choose from to achieve this objective. At the one end of this option spectrum is ‘focused entrepreneurship’ wherein specific innovation initiatives are created with the rest of the organization insulated from them. At the other end is a managerial approach that leads to the creation of ‘organizationwide entrepreneurship.’ Entrepreneurship in such organizations is a shared value and drives managerial behaviour in conscious and subconscious ways and creates an entrepreneurial spirit organization-wide. Many mature organizations, unwilling to alter the status quo, tend to create focused initiatives that are mandated to identify and exploit new opportunities. While such focused initiatives may stimulate innovation, the very nature of their design erects barriers between the existing organization and the innovation effort. This makes it difficult for the organizations to access and leverage the existing capability base and to integrate new initiatives back into operational activity.

Published PapersRamachandran, Kavil., Devarajan, T P. (2005) "Market Approach to Policing – Some International Trends", Academy Journal, 42-48
Published PapersRamachandran, Kavil., Voleti, Sudhir. (2004) "Business Process Outsourcing (BPO): Emerging Scenario and Strategic Options for IT – enabled services", Vikalpa, 29 (1), 49-62Read Abstract >Close >The paradigm shift that the Internet has brought about in communication has opened up a plethora of opportunities for outsourcing business processes (BPO) across continents. Success lessons in manufacturing sub-contracting are found to be relevant for understanding the logic of BPO. Outsourcing involves transferring certain value contributing activities or processes to another firm to save costs and for the principal to focus on its areas of key competence. The possibilities of disaggregating value elements for the purpose of creating value in them at the sub-contractors’ premises and final aggregation and synthesis at the parent organization are determined by the nature of industry, limitations of coordination and control, product maturity, and level of inter-firm competition. IT-enabled services (ITES) includes services that can be outsourced using the powers of IT; the extent to which this is possible depends on the industry, location, time, costs, and managerial perception of the risks involved. The Internet has facilitated execution of several activities, previously done within geographical proximity to the firm, from remote low-labour cost locations, drawing both transaction cost and production cost efficiencies. Some of the factors that come in the way of parents setting up their own operations in India and have significant implications for the growth trajectory of Indian BPOs are: direct cost of operations and scale economies long-term assessment of India as a low cost centre cost-benefit assessment of own vs rented possible loss of control over their transactions and confidentiality and security of the data if an outsider handles them brand implications of perceived drop in quality robustness of existing systems and processes. Many BPO firms do not seem to realize the possible exit barriers and strategies to manage exit, if necessary. What happened in the dot com era can very well happen in the BPO space also unless care is taken to manage this rapid growth while retaining productivity and quality. Two key capabilities required for success in ITES space are: capabilities to understand customer needs in the specific domains and acquiring business (BD capabilities) and capabilities to execute them efficiently (Ops capabilities). ITES firms are likely to bifurcate their firm into two parts based on these two critical success factors. The successful segregation of value elements in a number of processes has enabled value configuration in as many ways as required by customers, both in the case of product and service components of customer value. The current trend in outsourcing will go up when such analysis-synthesis becomes a routine. This will be accelerated also because the capabilities required to do so depend not only on technical skills and knowledge in a domain but also strong process capabilities. The trend of outsourcing is likely to continue to grow in the future despite temporary political protests because of the robust arguments outsourcing finds for itself in the economics literature, both in terms of transaction and production cost advantages. Subcontractors need robust systems and processes along with adequate domain knowledge and assured physical infrastructure for this to happen. In any case, the Indian BPO firms have to consistently prove their capabilities to deliver and create near indispensable situation for the parent to survive without them. This will not only involve growing technical and domain expertise, but also refinement in systems and practices, while keeping costs under control. In essence, BPO firms have to manage their consolidation and growth challenges simultaneously.

Published PapersRamachandran, Kavil. (2003) "Customer Dissatisfaction as a Source of Entrepreneurial Opportunity", Nanyang Business Review, 2 (2), 22-38Read Abstract >Close >Millions of dollars are wasted every year in failed and less successful new products and ventures. This is universally true. Not much success has been made so far in solving this problem, though identifying an attractive investment opportunity has been one of the determining factors of firm success. Methodologies to spot an opportunity have been scarce and weak. This paper discusses a simple but highly effective framework to fill this gap. This is based on the logic that customers buy new products and services if they are dissatisfied with the existing and if the new offering is better. Here customer need may be explicit or latent. Two implementable frameworks are discussed. One, Criticality- Discontentment Matrix for opportunity identification and, two, Customer Dissatisfaction Elimination Chain to refine business strategies and thus to achieve zero customer dissatisfaction for any business. A number of case studies from globally known firms have been referred to illustrate the frameworks.

Published PapersRamachandran, Kavil., Kumar S V. (2003) "Entrepreneurship, Small Industry and Exports: the Indian Scene", Journal of International Business and Entrepreneurship
Published PapersRamachandran, Kavil. (2003) "How Dotcoms can be Winners: Lessons from Internet’s Business Logic", Venture Capital, 5 (3), 191-216
Published PapersRamachandran, Kavil., Voleti, Sudhir. (2003) "BPO in India, Typology of and Strategic Options for Business Process", The Economic Times General Management Review
Published PapersRamachandran, Kavil., Ray, Sougata. (2002) "Entrepreneurial Resource Strategies in New Ventures ", The Economic Times General Management Review
Published PapersRamachandran, Kavil. (2001) "Management Strategies of Venture Capital Funded Firms", Journal of Entrepreneurship, 10 (2), 129-141
Published PapersRamachandran, Kavil., Yip, G S. (2000) "It's Time to Globalise Now", General Management Review, 11 (1)
Published PapersRamachandran, Kavil. (1998) "Competitive Innovations and Customer Value Management", Strategic Marketing, 1 (4)
Published PapersRay, Sougata., Ramachandran, Kavil. (1996) "Towards a Framework for a Comprehensive Theory of Entrepreneurship", Journal of Entrepreneurship, 5 (1), 1-22
Published PapersRamachandran, Kavil. (1994) "Strategic Planning in Small Enterprises: Some Empirical Evidence", Vikalpa, 19 (3), 47-54
Published PapersRamachandran, Kavil. (1993) "Promoting Small Enterprises - an interventionist mechanism", Small Enterprise Development Journal, 4 (4), 34-41
Published PapersRamachandran, Kavil., Ramnarayan, Subramaniam. (1993) "Entrepreneurial Orientation and Networking: some Indian evidence", Journal of Business Venturing, 8 (6), 513-524
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