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Mercedes Benz Green Field Investment Economics Essay

Firms are regularly looking for investment options to increase their return on capital entrusted upon them by the shareholders. Given the sluggish economic growth in the developed marketplaces of the western world and the rise of East Asian and South American economies, companies want further afield to exploit opportunities in these rising markets. The development for moving to faraway lands is further backed by the forces of globalization which may have led o emergence of a in close proximity to homogenous consumer culture. Rising middle classes in these speedily growing economies promise continued demand for products.

There are two main strategies that companies go after in their pursuit to provide the appearing economies. Firms can begin from scratch by building brand new facilities in the mark marketplaces. This also requires selecting local manpower to man their businesses. This can be expensive and frustrating. Besides, many local laws and regulations in the target markets put restrictions on the level of possession that foreigners maintain.

To circumvent these restrictions, firms choose to acquire local firms in their focus on markets. The trading firm gets control an area entity as a going concern. The benefit of such mode of entry is that the committing form can strike the ground working as all the development and marketing infrastructure is intact. However, it is likely that the acquiring firm may neglect to synergize businesses of the merged entities resulting in a messy procedure.

Factors that drive organizations to embark on investing in emerging market segments: Mercedes Benz renewable field investment and Volkswagen acquisition

Volkswagen obtained Skoda following latter's string of loss. Years of underinvestment in research and development made the company's production facilities outdated and low quality outcome. In 1991, VW bought 30% stake in Skoda and spent greatly in research and development and human resource training to improve the product quality. The effect was a resurgent Skoda brand that was overwhelmingly accepted by the market.

Mercedes Benz wanted to lunch its products in India. Given the positioning of its development facilities in high wage countries, importing foreign made products in to the Indian market would be uncompetitive. Besides, well healed rivals experienced already made inroads in to the market with advantageous prices. In 2007, the business acquired 100 acres of land to put up a manufacturing plant in Pune, India. The seed had an gross annual capacity greater than 5000 items and used local labor and materials save for the ones that couldn't be found in the country.

The following are the reasons that drive an organization to pursue investment opportunities in overseas countries;

Cutting costs.

Most european countries have high wages relative to their Asian, African and South American counterparts. There is also cheaper resources for used in the processing process. The cheaper resources permit the company to realize low per device costs which can be offered to the consumers. Mercedes Benz experienced this strategy when it got into the Indian market. Importing done units from the nearest development facility would bring about higher prices which could wait market uptake. The high transfer fees would also result even higher process compared to other brands fighting in the same category. Cheaper Indian labor, lower taxes and lower cost of main raw materials led to your choice to attempt the investment.

Expanding the merchandise base

Entry in to the overseas market offers likelihood of expanding the merchandise base. To help make the company's products charm to the neighborhood clientele, the products must be personalized to meet the specifications of the local market. the effect is an expanded and diversified product base. For example, VW acquisition of Skoda resulted in the addition of another product to sell alongside the VW brands. Skoda, whose motherland was in the Czech Republic, directly resembles VW in both quality and stability. VW offered the Skoda brands for sale most of Asia, Africa and SOUTH USA.

Expand revenue base

Mature markets in the developed world offer limited leads for growth. With the rising earnings of emerging marketplaces, firms are eager to exploit their probable. For instance, Mercedes Benz entrance into the Indian market followed successes of its competitors in the same market category (Audi and BMW). The rising earnings in these emerging markets and the countries encompassing them lead to an extremely attractive offer for the trading firms to ignore. This contrasts with most traditional western marketplaces where high gas prices and a contracting overall economy have required customers to decide for market car models.

Competition in the local market

Competition is stiff in most developed marketplaces. Customers are also discriminative and with little switching costs, they can decide for fighting brands. Often, price centered competition thins margins making companies realize very low success despite low volumes. For these reasons, firms look for options out of the domestic fronts to flee the cutting neck competition. The best option is to project in very good flung markets surging with demand and where competition is not based on pricing.

Underutilized capacity

Massive investment in seed and equipment contributes to incurrence of high set costs. To break even, businesses have to move large amounts. This implied demand cannot come from their domestic markets and so they endeavor in foreign marketplaces to go large documents to meet their functional expenses.

Rigid plans in the local market

Domestic limitations in the neighborhood market constrict the firm's capacity to wring out profits. these range from safeness to environmental polices that greatly limit the firm's ability to use profitably. Emerging marketplaces promise fewer constraints as they seek to get capital to their economies to provide work because of their surging populations. This makes these locations fertile grounds to obtain related businesses or build Greenfield investment.

Other likely factors resulting in investment in overseas companies

Monopolistic advantages

Most investing firms possess operative advantages relative to the local firms. Due to their superior investment in research and development, they may have amassed a number of patents and manufacturing skills that competitors that of home firms. They also have usage of a great deal of capital from their house markets due to their background and operational human relationships with major world financiers. Therefore, these forms are able to invest in huge plants or acquire comprehensive operations in international marketplaces. This affords them economies of range that is passed on to the consumers as reduced price. overseas firms are also able to develop superior product differentiation. The marginal cost of transferring their superior knowledge and experience in international markets is leaner than that of local organizations that have to invest full cost to understand such experience and knowledge edge.

On the contrary, local firms lack financial muscle to invest in research and development. They can not also invest in large buyouts scheduled to limited resources at their removal. Because of this, they develop weak supply chains, have fewer patents and have suprisingly low economies of scale leading to higher per unit costs.

b. oligopolistic advantage

Oligopolies enjoy limited competition owing to huge entry obstacles in their occupation. in their bet to maintain their position, the companies go on a defensive investment design such as acquiring overseas based players that provide vertical integration with their businesses. for occasion, western based olive oil companies acquire petrol prospecting licenses in the appearing market segments of Asia, south usa and Africa in a bid to safeguard their vitality in the already set up markets. This ensures their continuing supply in to feed their market segments.

This function of investments differs from the monopolistic benefits in that while oligopolistic investment is performed to erect obstacles to access of other businesses, monopolistic advantaged organizations seek to exploit their position on the market without locking out possible rivals and instead relying on their economic and knowledge.

c. product life cycle

Vermon (1971) came up with this theory to make clear the gradual change tat organizations experience to foreign direct investment from exporting. In the beginning, firms produce an ground breaking product and enjoy monopolistic gain at home. It therefore focuses on the creation of the impressive product and exports. It soon standardizes its creation and invests overseas to exploit its monopolistic advantages. It soon draws in competition and soon appears to endeavor into other overseas markets to exploit its monopolistic powers.

d. Eclectic theory

Put ahead by dunning (1988), the idea comes after in the wisdom of Peter Drucker who described that companies can sustain competitive market benefit by virtue of experiencing creation facilities in the main marketplaces. Therefore, while exporting offers the much important entry to the foreign markets, sustained competitiveness can only emanate from creating physical existence in these markets and customizing their offerings to match the clients in these markets.

Dunning (1988) described that there are three factors that drive businesses to attempt FDI. They are country specifies factors, company specific factors and internalization factors. Country specific factors relate to location variable including the political environment, geographical and financial factors, government insurance plan, and the occurrence of infrastructure to aid in the process of making and distribution. This is exactly what up to date Mercedes Benz investment in Pune, India. The business's management looked at the burgeoning middle income, he quickly growing current economic climate, the developed making infrastructure and the favorable government policies targeted at attracting foreign investment. The business sought to take benefit of that with the establishing of the totally fledged seed to serve the Indian market.

Dunning gave company specific factors as management efficiency, structure and functions as well as the scientific advantages that the committing form possesses. In focusing on a foreign investment, the company considers the mark company's composition and operations relative to its own and seeks details of improvement that can create sustained competitive advantage. This is actually the consideration that enlightened VW takeover of Skoda. VW experienced an excellent management that could change Skoda and create an outstanding brand in the market. it also got superior technology that enabled Skoda to remake its products into a more suitable product for its target market. VW modified Skoda structure to accommodate the changes in product research and development strategy that the later was to look at to contend in the markets as well as VW. The effect was an extremely acceptable brand just like that of the father or mother company.

Internalization refers to the company's inherent overall flexibility in adapting t the adjusted conditions in the prospective investment markets. Firms that contain an inherent capacity to adapt to changing market conditions are likely to invest in overseas markets if indeed they sense opportunity.

Risks in foreign direct investment

Investing in a foreign country entails assumption of inherent hazards. The risks usually involve political and economic uncertainty that every country encounters and that includes a direct effect on the firms procedures. Political risks evaluate a country's willingness and potential to meet its overseas obligations. Financial risk can be an expression of an country's ability to sustain monetary expansion necessary to spur demand of the firm's products.

Political risks that a company may experience

Strength and steadiness of government

Political risks depends on a variety of factors the most crucial factor being the balance of central government. The government is essential in maintaining legislations and order, observing guideline of rules and enforcing agreements. Without a central strong central government, it is not possible to keep lawful businesses in the country. Secondly, the attitudes of labor unions create political hazards. *** cite that the government is the single most significant determinant of overseas direct investment that a country holds because of its enactment of regulations supportive of business.

Labor unrest

The attitude of labor unions poses great hazards to the investment businesses. Labor unions which may have extensive membership can cripple businesses of a company in their quest for higher purchase their members. They are able to boost the cost to do business and can initiate litigation resulting in gigantic cost to the business. They are able to also initiate income raises that can provide the investment uncompetitive.

Government takeover of investment

There is a likelihood of the federal government overtaking the investment a company has generated. It may be a partial or total takeover of the firm or perhaps a forced sales of shareholding to the local investors keen to divert guidelines of the company in annual standard meetings through their voting electric power. This is most prevalent in mining industries. In most cases, government urges renegotiation of contracts that had early on been signed. This brings about incurrence of damage or lower profits.

Political unrests

Political unrest identifies the assault that breaks out consequently of fallout of the political processes. The overall population feels so it cannot pursue politics settlement due to the weak companies in the united states and resorts violence. Violence causes stoppage of monetary activities as looting and fraud takes center level. Capital flows from the country and local people's purchasing electric power erodes. Quality process calls for long even the firm's dedication fall as a consequence. The firm has to meet its maturing responsibilities from its capital as development cannot happen.

Operational restrictions

These are constraints that happen after building the operations. For example, the regulatory regulators can demand that the supervisory activities must be presented by locals. They are able to also change functional rules restricting say the opening and closing hours of business. Further, they can also impose limitations on repatriation of capital regardless of the investment from the mother or father company coming from abroad. Which means that foreign companies wanting to put in additional investment to improve their operations hesitate as they may have doubts as to whether they will repatriate their investment. These increase operational hazards of the company and reduce a firm's competitiveness.

Other political risk factors

Other factors that add to functional risk factors are the government campaign of buy local attitude meant to put the foreign companies at possibilities with the neighborhood population. The locals are motivated to buy their own local products no matter their quality as a sign of patriotism. The effect is that regardless of the foreign firm's investment in quality, customers choose lower quality products in the name of patriotism.

Public frame of mind also plays a significant role in increasing politics risk. In emerging markets, the populace will see limited opportunity to enhance their living criteria. They therefore shun luxury items created by the foreign organizations despite their ability to buy such products. The gap between the aspirations of the neighborhood inhabitants and their goals contributes to politics risk. Government attitude also plays an important factor. Some unstable governments blame the foreign shareholders for instability especially in the mineral sector. The result is bad promotion and sanctions in other very sensitive markets that offer higher go back.

Radical shifts in administration procedures that typically come up from change of administration also pose politics risks. For example the change from right to still left leaning governments are often associated with change in monetary and fiscal plans. In other situations, change in administration results in constraints of trade or enactment of trade contracts with other countries. In both cases, political risks increase and tripped other risk most severe of these being competition from other players in the trading stop and foreign currency losses.

Mitigating measures a firm should try guard itself against politics risk

Given the chance that a firm is exposed to, it is important to take methods to safeguard it against losses due to the crystallization of political risk. The most common measure is to get a overseas investment make sure from OPIC (Overseas Private Investment Company). OPIC provides coverage against loss developing from expropriation, warfare or civil disorder and non-convertibility of revenue for repatriation.

The other method entails striking harmonious chord with the local population. This means avoiding tendencies that stirs trouble with the neighborhood government or its people. Making an investment firms should take part in cultural responsibility initiatives and deal with the impression they have come to exploit their natural resources.


There is not a nation declare that can tolerate penetration of its markets by a international company if it perceives its financial, social, politics and economic health are under risk. Firms cannot shield themselves from all political risks. It is therefore advisable for an trading firm to determine both politics and economic dangers that include the investment opportunity. It should also take preventive methods such as interesting the neighborhood community in social responsibility initiatives and obtaining investment promises from OPIC among other methods. Generally, the politics and economic risks posed by the investing opportunity tails in comparison to the huge benefits that the organizations seeks to gain. This simple fact has resulted in the common investment by foreign firms in inexperienced fields and acquisition in search of opportunity.

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