The quest for value
: examples of two portuguese SMEs in the agricultural sector

  • António Daniel Caleiras Madeira (Student)

Student thesis: Master's Thesis


The aim of this dissertation is to understand how two Portuguese SMEs in the agricultural sector, Adega Cooperativa Vidigueira, Cuba e Alvito (ACVCA) and Herdade Maria da Guarda (HMG), were able to internationalize their products and brands. Such analysis will explore the strategies deployed by both companies to enter new foreign markets and verify if their resources and capabilities could potentially enable them to create and sustain a Competitive Advantage internationally. It was possible to conclude that in the case of ACVCA their extensive history in winemaking and their deep regional ties have generated both resources that are mutually reinforcing, their product authenticity and winemaking knowledge, and those lay the foundations for a potential achievement of a sustainable Competitive Advantage internationally. For HMG, their scale of operations and process automation/innovation enabled them to increase their overall efficiency and effectiveness allowing them to face large scale competitors and to potentially establish their brand internationally. Ultimately both firms have engaged in internationalization strategies that are typical of companies with reduced internalization experience and limited capacity to differentiate their product. However, their internationalization endeavours will lead them to gain the knowledge and understanding on the next steps needed to be taken in order to adapt and differentiate their offerings abroad.
Date of Award30 Jun 2021
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Universidade Católica Portuguesa
SupervisorNuno Cardeal (Supervisor)


  • Internationalization strategies
  • Entry modes
  • Resources and capabilities
  • Sustainable competitive advantage
  • Product differentiation
  • Exports


  • Mestrado em Gestão e Administração de Empresas

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