International experience, growth aspirations, and the internationalisation of new ventures

The aim of this paper is to investigate the impact of the breadth and depth of international experience on subsequent new venture internationalisation and to what extent growth aspirations moderate these relationships. Drawing upon previous literature on international new ventures, human capital and growth aspirations, we tested our hypotheses using longitudinal data from the Comprehensive Australian Study of Entrepreneurial Emergence (CAUSEE). Our results support the hypothesis that breadth of international experience has a positive impact on internationalisation. Depth of international experience on its own does not predict subsequent internationalisation activities. However, results support our hypothesis that the interplay of a high growth aspiration and depth of international experience has a positive effect on internationalisation activities. Our study contributes to the research stream on new venture internationalisation by distinguishing between breadth and depth of international experience, suggesting that these dimensions are differentially linked to internationalisation. Further, we test for interaction effects between international experience and growth aspirations. We thereby add to the knowledge by illustrating that some types of human capital are only utilised when accompanied by growth aspirations.