Generating a Model of International Markets Development (Case Study: Petrochemical Products)

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Department of Business Management, Kish International Branch, Islamic Azad University, Kish Island, Iran.

2 Assistant Prof., Department of Business Management, South Tehran Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran.

3 Assistant Prof., Department of Business Management, North Tehran Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran.


The petrochemical industry is greatly significant because it can increase the connections between the domestic economy and the country's petroleum sector. It can also direct Iranian economy from a crude energy seller to an exporter of valuable products. The petrochemical industry has different conditions in road and marine transportation and it is impossible to pose senctions in this area due to the variety of products and customers. On the other hand, petrochemicals, such as oil, do not have traceable export bases and massive tankers. However, the vulnerability of the petrochemical industry to sanctions will be reduced as long as Iran moves towards the actualization of converting primary products into various end products. It will lead to greater foreign exchange earnings. In this regard, Iran can minimize the opposition of petrochemical sanctions by relying on the export of polymer products. The purpose of this study was to provide a model of various factors affecting the development of international markets for petrochemical products.
To achieve this goal, the factors were identified using a qualitative mixed approach i.e., the grounded theory. For this purpose, 20 petrochemical industry experts were interviewed to collect data.
As a result, 106 concepts were identified, which were divided into 21 categories and 6 dimensions. Price factors, influential groups, export manager capability, geographical factors, host company’s conditions, competitive conditions, production factors, product characteristics, and finally the company's strategy and status were identified as causal factors. In addition, 5 macroeconomic factors, governmental policies, export regulations, industry-related factors, and macro-export factors were extracted as contextual conditions. Three strategies of technology leadership, market leadership, and cost leadership were also identified. The consequences and results of the development of international markets were also defined into two categories of brand image and financial performance. Moreover, the company’ life and organizational culture were recognized as interfering factors. Consequently, the development model of international markets was proposed.
Considering the difficult economic conditions in today's world, most markets have established a dynamic nature, which requires companies to constantly strive to improve their organization. Particularly, more effort is required in response to the changing needs of foreign customers. International sanctions is regarded as one of the most important sources identified in the field of governmental policy. Reviewing the sanctions imposed on Iran shows that different aspects of the economy are the target of sanctions in terms of consumption, income, production, import of goods and services, and etc. Exports (oil and non-oil) is one of the targets of sanctions, which can have a paramount place according to the conditions of Iran. None of the countries producing and owning petrochemical industry can produce and replace about 25 million tons of petrochemical exports like in Tehran. Besides, it is relatively impossible for other countries such as Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates to replace Iran.


Acosta, A. S., Crespo, A. H., Agudo, J.C. (2018). Effect of market orientation, network capability and entrepreneurial orientation on international performance of small and medium enterprises (SMEs). International Business Review, 27(6), 1128-1140.
Azizi, S., Ghareche, M., Barati, A. (2018). Model of Successful Branding in the Ceramic and Tile Industry Using Grounded Theory Approach. Journal of Business Management, 9(4), 826-807. (in Persian)
Creswell, J. W. (2007). Qualitative Inquiry and Research Design: Choosing among five Approaches (pp. 53-84). Thousands Oaks: Sage Publications.
Danaei Fard, H., Alvani, M., Azar, A. (2013). Qualitative Research Methodology In Management: A Comprehensive Approach. Tehran, Saffar Publications. (in Persian)
Fahimifar, J., Vali Beigi, H., Abedin Moghanaki, M.R. (2004). Prioritization of target markets of selected Iranian petrochemical products. Quarterly Journal of Business Research, 31, 153-202. (in Persian)
Faryabi, M., Rahimiaghdam, S., Kousheshi, M., PourAghabalaei, A. (2019). Effect of market orientation and international experience on export performance with the mediating role of international marketing strategy. Journal of International Business Administration, 2(1), 23-44. (in Persian)
Franc, A. S., & Rua, O. L. (2018). Relationship between intangible resources, absorptive capacities and export performance. Tourism & Management Studies, 14(1), 94–107.
Glaser, B.G. (1978). Theoretical Sensitivity: Advances in the Methodology of Grounded Theory. Mill Valley, California: The Sociology Press.
Goodarzi, A., Saburi Deilami, M.H. (2014). Investigating the Long-Term Relationship between the Exchange Rate and Iran's Non-Oil Exports. Quarterly Journal of Parliament and Strategy, 21(77), 5-38. (in Persian)
Googerdchiyan, A., Tayebi, K. (2006). An Investigation of the FDI Determinants in the Iran's Petrochemical Industry by the Panel Data Method. Iranian Journal of Economic Research, 8 (26), 181-203. (in Persian)
Guraniz, J., & Ma, N. (2017). Innovative capability and export performance of Chinese firms. Technovation, 23(9), 737-747.
Haidar, J. I. (2017). Sanctions and export deflection: evidence from Iran. Economic Policy, 32(90), 319-355.
Hamidizadeh, M., Jamalieh Bastami, B. (2018). Design and Explanation of the Model of Dynamic Segmentation through the International Petroleum Product Market of Iran (Case Study: International Gasoline Market). Journal of Business Management, 10(1), 73-96. (in Persian)
Hassanvand, A., Hassanvand, D., Nademi, Y. (2018). The Impact of sanctions on non-oil exports of Iran: Structural time series approach. Quarterly Journal of the Macro and Strategic Policies, 6(24), 666-687. (in Persian)
Hossainee, Y., MirJahanMard, J. (2011). Companies Export Function: Identifying the Effects of Perceived Competitive Advantages, Adapting Marketing Tactics and Exporting Experience on Export Function. New Marketing Research Journal, 1(1), 155-180.
(in Persian)
İpek, L. and Bıçakcıoğlu-Peynirci, N. (2020). Export market orientation: An integrative review and directions for futureresearch. International Business Review, 29(4), 101659. Available in:
Julian, C. C., Ali, M. Y. (2009). Incentives to export forAustralian export market ventures. Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development, 16 (3), 418-431.
Kaleka, A., Morgan, N.A. (2019). How marketing capabilities and current performance drive strategic intentions in international markets. Industrial Marketing Management, 78, 108-121.
Khalili Araghy, M., Akbari Moghadam, B., Ataollahi, M. (2009). The Effect of Environmental Risks, Corporate Strategy and Capital Structure on Firm Performance in Petro chemistry Industry. Journal of Development & Evolution Mnagement, 1(1), 41-47. (in Persian)
Lin, F. J., & Ho, C. W. (2019). The knowledge of entry mode decision for small andmedium enterprises. Journal of Innovation & Knowledge, 4(1), 32–37.
Loos, H.Z.A., Negro, S.O., Hekkert. M.P. (2020). International markets and technological innovation systems: The case of offshore wind. Environmental Innovation and Societal Transitions, 34, 121–138.
Mahmoudian, O., Hashemi, M. (2017). Assessment and Development of Non-oil Products Exports in the Social Security Investment Company (SHASTA). Journal of Business Management, 9(1), 155-172. (in Persian)
Massao Oura, M., Zilber, S.N., Lopez, E.L. (2016). Innovation capacity, international experience and export performance of SMEs in Brazil. International Business Review, 25(4), 921-932.
Mehrgan, M., Safari, H., Asgharizadeh, E. (2010). Measuring Competitiveness of Methanol through ‌Fuzzy System. Journal of Business Management, 2(4), 165-184. (in Persian)
Mohtaram, R., Movasagh, M. (2018). The Study of Effect Export Market Orientation and Marketing Mix Adaptation on Export Performance (Case Study: Non-oil Exporter Firms in Tehran). Journal of Business Management, 10(1), 165-186. (in Persian)
Mokhtari Moughari, M., Abbasian, E., Hassan Gholipour Yasory, T., Mahmoodi, V. (2020). Network Model of Risk in Non-Oil Export Sector in Iran. Journal of Business Management, 12(3), 702-726. (in Persian)
Monteiro, A.P., Soares, A.M., Rua, O.L. (2019). Linking intangible resources and entrepreneurial orientation toexport performance: The mediating effect of dynamic capabilities. Journal of Innovation & Knowledge, 4(3), 179-187.
Panahi, N., Alizadeh Osaloo, A., Chavosh Bashi, M., Derafshi, S. (2008). Success Strategies In The Petrochemical Industry To Enter Global Markets. The First Petrochemical Conference in Iran, Tehran. (in Persian)
Ricciardi, F., Zardini, A., & Rossignoli, C. (2018). Organizational integration of the IT function: A key enabler of firm capabilities and performance. Journal of Innovation & Knowledge, 3(3), 93–107.
Solberg, C.A., Olsson, U.H. (2010). Management orientation and export performance: the case of Norwegian ICT companies. Baltic Journal of Management, 5(1), 28-50.
Strauss, A., Corbin, J. (2014). Basics of Qualitative Research: Techniques and Procedures for Developing Grounded Theory (Mohammadi, Trans). Tehran, Institute for Humanities And Cultural Studies. (in Persian)
Tan, Q., & Sousa, C.M.P. (2016). Leveraging marketing capabilities into competitiveadvantage and export performance. International Marketing Review, 32(1), 78–102.
Thangamani, T., Kamaraj, M. (2019). Analysis Of export problems In international market for Indian electrical equipments Iindustry at power distribution sector. Journal of Business Studies, 4(1), 62-78.
Weerawardena, J. & O'Cass, A. (2009). Examining the role of international entrepreneurship, innovation and international market performance in SME internationalization. European Journal of Marketing, 43 (11/12), 1325-1348.