The objective of this paper is to evaluate the performance and outline a profile of the medium and medium-large size italian multinational firms. The work concentrates specifically on industrial multinational firms of “fourth capitalism” - that is the set of the medium and medium-large industrial firms - that show to be stronger on foreign markets, either through exports or through foreign direct investment. The analysis unveils the underlying innovation model of multinational firms of “fourth capitalism" and shows the complex strategy towards internationalization of these firms, where innovation has a key role, but equally important are the flexibility and specialization in production, since these elements will guide the choices to invest and produce abroad. Also the commercial dimension, which leads at the direct supervision of foreign markets and at looking very carefully at customers, has a strategic function. Finally, the work highlights some critical issues such as the cost of burocracy, the high tax rate, an insufficient institutional support for internazionalization.
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