Internationalising to create Firm Specific Advantages: Leapfrogging strategies of U.S. Pharmaceutical firms in the 1930s and 1940s & Indian Pharmaceutical firms in the 1990s and 2000s
Suma Athreye & Andrew Godley
Internationalisation is a useful strategy to gain firm specific
advantages during periods of technological discontinuity. The
pharmaceutical industry offers us two such episodes as examples: when
the antibiotics revolution was beginning and when the possibilities of
genetic routes to new drug discovery were realised. This paper compares
the strategies adopted by laggard U.S. firms scrambling to gain
capabilities in antibiotics, and Indian firms equally eager to acquire
positions in new biotechnology based drugs and shows that both groups
used internationalisation strategies to gain technological advantages
and build up their firm specific advantages.
Key words: Technological leapfrogging, Internationalisation Strategies, Indian Pharmaceutical industry, Antibiotics revolution, US Pharmaceuticals.
JEL codes: F2, L2, L6,N8, O3
UNU-MERIT Working Papers ISSN 1871-9872