The empirical link between export entry mode diversity and export performance: a contingency- and institutional-based examination

This study examines, for the first time, the critical issue of whether firms ought to adopt various entry modes in their export activities, i.e. whether firms ought to carry-out greater levels of export entry mode diversity, as a route to increase export performance. Underpinned by contingency and institutional theories this research also examines the role of institutional barriers, investment uncertainty, and geographical scope as moderators of the export entry mode diversity-export performance link. Findings suggest that greater export entry mode diversity is beneficial for export performance. Furthermore, higher export entry mode diversity levels are particularly recommended for firms that operate in export environments with higher institutional barriers, and for firms that have greater levels of export geographical scope. Results concerning the moderating role of investment uncertainty on the export entry mode diversity-export performance link are modest, and vary in signal across different levels of export entry mode diversity.