Tuesday, June 19, 2007

A different kind of Multinational

Dear YS

Thank you for your reply to my June 10th post. I agree with you that "micro" in "micro-multinational" is just a state of mind. I believe that whoever used this term first time probably just wanted to reduce the typical scope or the conventional grand image of the word "multinational" that comes to mind when thinking of a "multinational company". Before getting involved with Heaven Fresh, I always thought of a multinational company to be a gigantic business with extensive resources, abundance of money, enormous influence and vast market share. A few examples could be, Procter & Gamble, Coca Cola, Pepsi, Microsoft, Toyota, Sony, Pfizer and Siemens etc. etc.

A company like Heaven Fresh is still far from reaching the mass and power of the above mentioned companies (Not that it will always be, but right now it is :). There is no question that it is a multinational company and the revenues are in millions but still it is a "small business" at this point in time. Before the Internet era, a company like Heaven Fresh could not even think about becoming multinational before getting out of the "small business" realm. Now the question is that what makes Heaven Fresh a small business. It is the fact that as a company we still do not have the luxury of taking all the expansion steps that we want to take at our will. The resources are inadequate, the capital is very limited, market share is extremely small and many people in each of the Heaven Fresh offices still wear several hats (a characteristics of a small business).

So when you look at Heaven Fresh from a perspective of insufficient resource to make aggressive growth moves, you can only classify it as a small business. On the other hand when you consider the fact that it is multinational and revenues are in millions it looks anything but a small business.

Probably "Micro-Multinational" is not the correct term but in my opinion it conveys the message that something is fundamentally different about Heaven Fresh from a typical "Multinational Company" of a 20th century. Whether we use the term "Micro-Multinational" or "Small multinational business" or "XYZ", the distinction between Heaven Fresh and let's say Proctor & Gamble is very important and the key factor here.

Why is it important? That has to be left for another post. It's almost midnight now and I have to go to bed soon. Someone's waiting for me :)

Good Night.

1 Comments:

Blogger cedric said...

I'd argue that a micro multinational(MM) is not only "micro" in terms of revenue within an industry. The true novelty, I believe, is the venture capacity to build a strong brand equity in a narrowly defined market with very limited ressources,using the most efficient tools such as targeted content advertisement,CRM systems ,Sales automation,remote desktoping,telecommuting etc...

When the yearly combined budget of these tools are still found to be only a decimal fraction of your sales and yet be able to grow its brand equity internationally,I'd say it can be a good indication you are operating in a micro multinational company.

In a word, MM does not only mean limited revenue,but is (in my mind)synonymous to a small group of people leveraging advanced technologies to build a strong international presence rapidly and cost effectively.

June 22, 2007 9:15:00 AM PDT  

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