Quotation Schuh, Arnold. 2015. Local Heroes in Central and Eastern Europe - In Search of Successful Domestic Firms in the Region. 13th Vaasa International Business Conference, Vaasa, Finnland, 28.08. Invited Talk




In the last years we have seen an increasing interest in fast growing and internationalizing firms from emerging markets, particularly from Asia and Latin America. With the exception of Russia successful firms from Central and Eastern Europe have not appeared in the public debate so far. However, as the study by the Competence Center for Central and Eastern Europe at WU Vienna shows, there are many “local heroes” operating in the region that would deserve more attention. Local heroes are well-run, privately owned firms that have a strong market position in their relevant segments at home and abroad and are often innovation leaders in their field. Our research based on 60 locally owned firms in the region shows that the financially most successful firms are IT firms followed by pharmaceutical firms. Among these successful IT firms are software firms such Avast and Ysoft from Czech Republic, ESET and Sygic from Slovakia, Asseco and Comarch from Poland and Teamnet from Romania. Gedeon Richter (Hungary), Krka (Slovenia) and Polpharma (Poland) are innovative and internationally operating pharmaceutical firms. Regarding the strategic positioning firms pursuing a highly specialized strategy are more successful than firms targeting a broader market. Focus and niche strategies lead to a higher profitability than differentiation and pure low-cost strategies. In general, firms in CEE should bet on innovation and differentiation of their products and services from the competition as well as on niche strategies where they can leverage their special know-how and competence.


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Publication's profile

Status of publication Published
Affiliation WU
Type of publication Paper presented at an academic conference or symposium
Language English
Title Local Heroes in Central and Eastern Europe - In Search of Successful Domestic Firms in the Region
Event 13th Vaasa International Business Conference
Year 2015
Date 28.08.
Country Finland
Location Vaasa
Invited Talk Y


Schuh, Arnold (Details)
Competence Center for Emerging Markets and CEE WE (Details)
Research areas (Ă–STAT Classification 'Statistik Austria')
5307 Business and management economics (Details)
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