Networking from Home to Abroad: The Internationalization of The Iberostar Group



This chapter considers how networks between a family firm and foreign companies in a constrained domestic market were deployed and developed through time, and how these networks supported the internationalization of a family firm. We analyse the historical case study of a Spanish multinational family firm, the Iberostar Group, which since 1956 has operated in the tourist industry. Our case shows that the Spanish company constituted a trustworthy partner through which foreign companies entered the Spanish tourist market and built business alliances with both a domestic and an international scope. Interaction between the Iberostar Group and foreign companies allowed this Spanish family firm to grow and consolidate its domestic business but also provided access to foreign markets, resulting in a learning process that forearmed the company to venture abroad. In this process of networking, the family nature of the Iberostar Group was key because it offered its international partners reputation and therefore trust, reliability and a long-term vision enabling it to counteract the uncertainties and constraints imposed by the domestic context.


Family firm Internationalization Networks Spanish tourism industry 



We thank Iberostar Group for allowing access and use of the information contained in this paper. We especially thank Sabina Fluxá (CEO of Iberostar Group) for all her support. We also thank funding from Spanish Ministerio de Ciencia, Innovacion y Universidades (MCIU), Agencia Estatal de Investigacion (AEI), and Fondo Europeo de Desarrollo Regional (FEDER), through project PGC2018-093971-B-I00..


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© The Author(s), under exclusive license to Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2021

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Universidad Complutense de MadridMadridSpain
  2. 2.Universidad Francisco de VitoriaMadridSpain
  3. 3.House of InnovationStockholm School of EconomicsStockholmSweden
  4. 4.Lancaster University Management SchoolLancasterUK

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