Purpose - To analyse the impact of internationalization and proprietary assets on the performance of Taiwanese high tech firms.
Design/methodology/approach - Reviews the existing literature on the relationship between internationalization, proprietary assets and firm performance, and develops associated hypotheses. Tests the hypotheses on a sample of companies listed in the electronics and information technologies category on the Taiwan stock exchange, taking into consideration variables of firm performance, internationalization, size leverage and industry effects.
Findings - Confirms that: Taiwanese high-tech firms demonstrate a higher degree of internationalization compared with Japan; they have higher R&D intensity but lower advertising intensity; they utilize manufacturing technology R&D efforts to realize competitive advantages in original equipment manufacturing and original design manufacturing businesses; a moderate level of internationalization enhances performance, whereas at a higher level it has a negative impact on firm performance; and marketing assets are negatively related to performance.
Research limitations/implications - Suggests that future research could employ types of patents as indicators of technological advantages, and could also examine founders' impacts on the relationship between internationalization and performance in high-tech firms during their early years.
Practical implications - Recommends that firms should take available management resources and governance structures into account when venturing into overseas markets, and should invest more resources towards the creation of R&D assets in order to form core competences to augment firm growth and performance.
Originality/value - Extends previous research into the relationship between internationalization and firm performance by focusing on Asian developing countries.
International Journal of Technology Management, 29(1-2), 116-135