E-commerce in Emerging Markets: internationalization factors of Brazilian footwear in South America

André Daudt dos Reis, Marcelo André Machado


Study objectives: This paper aimed to analyze the factors that affect international operations for e-commerce to Argentina, Chile and Colombia, in the case of Brazilian footwear industry. This study also sought to identify the main barriers to the internationalization and level of control required by Brazilian footwear firms into South American markets.

Method/approach: It was conducted a qualitative research with a data collection composed by in-depth interviews with three experts in e-commerce and executives from three Brazilian footwear firms. These firms produce their own branded shoes by e-commerce operations in Brazil and are current exporters to Argentina, Chile and Colombia.

Originality/Relevance: Despite of the significant growth of e-commerce in the recent years in South America, there is still a lack of research related to the topic with a specific focus for this region.

Main results: The findings suggest that the similar logistics and telecommunication infrastructure, the related services, the electronic payment options and the South American consumer propensity regarding to Brazil shoes are external factors with influence on international operations by e-commerce. However, the discrepancies regarding local legislation are the main barriers for the internationalization of Brazilian footwear e-commerce.

Theoretical contributions: Firms from emerging markets tend to internationalize e-commerce operations through low risk strategies, focusing only on marketing and sales activities.

Managerial contributions: The need for a high level of control on the commercial activities and the brand management abroad are internal factors that can affect costs and pace of Brazilian footwear e-commerce internationalization.


South American e-commerce, e-commerce internationalization, footwear industry internationalization, footwear e-commerce.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.20397/2177-6652/2020.v20i1.1790

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