UNLABELLED: The literature on marketing, operations management, and strategy has investigated the impacts of a firm's supplier network structure and complexity on its financial, environmental, and innovation performance. However, our understanding of how the global supply chain complexities of a multinational enterprise (MNE) affect its international business performance (IBP) is limited. We draw on both the business network theory and information search literature to propose that the various complexity dimensions (e.g., horizontal, vertical, and spatial) of an MNE's global supply chain have different influences on its subsequent IBP. We argue-and empirically validate-that collaboration, a network orchestration mechanism, enables an MNE to leverage the benefits of complex relationships. Using a dataset of 185 firms taken from multiple industries over 6 years, we show how such complexities have differential effects. In multiple post hoc analyses, we demonstrate how an MNE's marketing intensity, the interconnectedness among its supply members, and its top management team (TMT)'s international experience all have unique impacts. This study contributes to the existing literature on global supply chain complexity by demonstrating how it can influence MNEs' IBP. Moreover, we contribute to the strategic IBP literature by outlining effective global supply chain improvement strategies. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The online version contains supplementary material available at 10.1057/s41267-021-00497-0.
J Int Bus Stud
- Supply Base Collaboration
- Global Supply Chain
- International Business Performance