Multifocal entrepreneurial practices: the case of Moroccan import/export businesses in Milan

G. Solano

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

34 Citations (Scopus)


In recent years, the topic of cross-border businesses developed by immigrants (transnational entrepreneurship) has emerged as one of the most interesting areas of research in studies on immigrants and their economic activities. From a theoretical standpoint, the paper proposes to use the concept of multifocality, defined as the structural and relational embeddedness of immigrants in places and groups. A scheme adapting a mixed embeddedness approach to the case of transnational entrepreneurship is introduced. Empirically, the article presents the case of Moroccan import/export businesses in Milan, investigating the role of multifocality and structural embeddedness in shaping the internationalisation process. The study shows that Moroccan entrepreneurial activities are connected with several countries simultaneously, not only with the countries of immigration and origin. In particular, Moroccan entrepreneurs use their personal multifocality and structural embeddedness to identify and take advantage of business opportunities for internationalising the business.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)176-198
Number of pages23
JournalInternational Journal of Entrepreneurship and Small Business
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2016


  • Business internationalisation
  • Cross-border businesses
  • Entrepreneurial practices
  • Import/export businesses
  • Italy
  • Milan
  • Mixed embeddedness
  • Moroccan entrepreneurs
  • Moroccan immigrants
  • Multifocality
  • Small businesses
  • Structural embeddedness
  • Transnational entrepreneurship
  • Transnationalism


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