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date: 12 December 2019

Abstract and Keywords

Only two Italian multinationals born in very early twentieth century are surviving today (Fiat and Pirelli), while a number of public and private business that in the early post-war period had reached significant positions in the global business environment (such as Olivetti, Montecatini, SNIA, IRI-Ilva, Farmitalia) gradually disappeared or were sold to either Italian or foreign ownership. Since the mid-1980s a new wave of private SMEs ("fourth capitalism") became new protagonists of a rapid transformation from strong exporters to growing multinationals competing in sizeable world market niches. The chapter provides an overview of successes and failures of this peculiar pattern of multinational growth and decline of Italian firms.

Keywords: investors, competitiveness, market niches

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