International Servitization: Theoretical Roots, Research Gaps and Implications

Nilay Bicakcioglu-Peynirci*, Robert E. Morgan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

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While the servitization concept has gained increasing attention in the domestic marketing literature, there is more limited knowledge with respect to its implications within the international context. The purpose of this paper is to examine the servitization concept in the international context considering its boundary conditions and its effects on firm performance. Relying on the resource-based view and the boundary conditions function, the authors aim to identify a set of research gaps focusing on how strategic resource decisions (i.e. slack resources and digital marketing capabilities) help industrial firms to provide different types of service offerings (i.e. services in support of product (SSPs) and services in support of client's actions (SSCs)) that leverage their performance in international markets.

The authors illustrate international servitization strategies and the boundaries of servitization activities that firms employ through a series of case vignettes. The authors derive a conceptual framework, serving as a guideline for future research endeavors.

The authors indicate the importance of servitization strategies in international markets and identify eight research gaps, which help to build an agenda for future research. Key differences between international servitization strategies and strategic resource decisions are addressed through illustrative case vignettes from different industries.

Practical implications:
The insights from this work inform marketing executives about how international servitization strategies are influential in the context of overseas markets by characterizing the servitization concept and elaborating upon the specific resources and capabilities that underpin its execution in foreign markets.

This conceptual paper provides a comprehensive understanding of international servitization strategies in overseas markets and identifies several research paths that contribute to the complex nature of servitization in the international context and help scholars spot gaps and research questions worthy of investigation.
Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Marketing Review
Issue number2
Pages (from-to)338-364
Number of pages27
Publication statusPublished - 2023

Bibliographical note

Published online: 14 March 2023.


  • International
  • Servitization
  • Industrial services
  • Resource-based view
  • Boundary conditions

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