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  •   Christine Ooko

  •   Martin Ogutu

  •   Mercy Munjuri

  •   Jeremiah Kagwe

Abstract

The main objective of this study was to establish the influence of firm characteristics on the relationship between foreign market entry strategies and the financial performance of multinational firms in Kenya. The study was hinged on Resource-Based View as a theoretical foundation. The literature revealed that numerous studies had been conducted on the influencing factors of firm characteristics such as Size and Age on the financial performance of multinational firms. However, these studies did not put into consideration of other possible factors such as firm characteristics and indicators such as liquidity and leverage. More so, the studies did not consider firm characteristics as a possible influencer of the direct relationship between choice of entry strategies and financial performance of multinational firms. The study utilized a cross-sectional study design which adopted both analytical and descriptive type of studies. Secondary data was used to obtain the desired information from the multinational firms’ annual reports for the financial years 2017, 2016, 2015, and 2014. The study focused on only the publicly listed multinational firms in the Nairobi Security Exchange. Data were obtained from all the 62 listed firms. The study used Sales Growth, ROA, ROE, and ROCE to measure financial performance. Age, Liquidity, and Leverage were used as indicators of firm characteristics with leverage and liquidity further measured as Debt-Equity ratio and Current Assets Ratio respectively. Foreign market entry strategies were measured using Franchising, wholly-owned subsidiaries, Acquisition, and Joint Ventures. The results of the study showed that an interaction between firm characteristics and foreign market entry strategy significantly affected the direct relationship between foreign market entry strategies and the financial performance of multinational firms. The study concludes that firm characteristics have a positive effect on the financial performance of multinational firms through the influence of their choice of entry into foreign markets. It is recommended that multinational firms with desires to expand globally should use their global footprint to maximize on their international operations through leverage activities. In addition, policies governing the liquidity of companies to be revised in order to increase financial performance if previously they affected it. For the study was only limited to the publicly listed multinational institutions, future researchers should consider studying all the multinational firms operating in Kenya. The study provided a contextual understanding of the Resource-Based View. This theory tried to bring in views on choosing the right entry strategy into foreign markets based on the familiarity or unfamiliarity of a foreign market setting given the resources available to a firm. Findings also provided key ingredients for policymakers to embark on an integrated policy formulation in the full understanding of the interplay of a firm’s unique characteristics as far as multinational firms are concerned. And in practice, global business management should be in a better position to identify the right entry strategies into new markets that would yield them great financial profits.

Keywords: Firm Characteristics, Foreign Market Entry Strategies, Multinational Firms, Financial Performance

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How to Cite
Ooko, C., Ogutu, M., Munjuri, M., & Kagwe, J. (2020). The Influence of Firm Characteristics on the Relationship between Foreign Market Entry Strategies and Financial Performance of Listed Multinational Firms in Kenya. European Journal of Business and Management Research, 5(3). https://doi.org/10.24018/ejbmr.2020.5.3.332