An Empirical Examination of Multinational Corporations'(MNCs)Integration of Tourism Market Development Strategies(TMDS) With African Host Countries' Needs and Expectations.
Iroegbu, Henry Godson U.
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This exploratory study examined the different tourism market development strategies that tourism Multinational Corporations (MNCs) implement in their operations in African host countries. It empirically investigated the existence of any relationships between tourism MNCsâ market development strategies and the â Needs and Expectations of African host countries.â Also, it investigated the influences of external environmental factors on tourism MNCsâ tourism market strategic choice. Its sample population were top management executives of tourism MNCsâ with operations in the African market. The unit of analysis was the corporation. The sample frame was an exhaustive list of tourism MNCs with operations in the African region. The initial sample size was 106 tourism MNCsâ executives. Thirty-seven of them responded to a mail in survey questionnaire. Two of the questionnaires were discarded due to numerous missing data. Thus, there were 35 usable questionnaires for data analysis, which is a response rate of 33%. The study results identified relationships between the integration of Multinational Corporationsâ (MNCs) tourism market development strategies with the needs and expectations of developing African host countries, and their successful performance in those host countries in terms of growth in operations and profitability. It revealed that significant differences exist among the market development strategies on the factors of needs and expectations of African host countries. The significant factors were community participation, local entrepreneurship, and job and national security. Also, the economic development factor was observed to be partially significant. This study also identified free trade economy in the African host countries as a significant factor on the influence of external environment. The framework of this study is embedded in the underlying theories of international strategic management, international business, international development, and needs and expectations. The studyâ s final conceptual model depicts the significant factors of African host countriesâ needs and expectations, the tourism market development strategies, an integration of the two concepts and the resultant tourism MNCs successful performance. This research study investigated MNCs in all sectors of the tourism industry. And the findings have shown that for the tourism MNCs to be successful in their African host countries, they should be sensitive to the identified sectors, namely economic development, community participation, local entrepreneurship, and job and national security measures. Also, they should exert more efforts in exploring African free trade economies for their business locations in the region.