Klynger, international konkurrencevne, vidensdeling: Hvorfor avancerer og blomstrer nogle virksomheder? Arla Foods case-studie

Jon Bach

Student thesis: Diploma thesis


The purpose of the report is to gain insight about the importance of location in the international business environment and clusters especially. Departure in this report is though taken in a Danish company/cooperative, Arla Foods, and in a Danish setting, but with a global perspective of how the right conditions in the business environment can greatly improve collaboration, knowledge-sharing, innovation and international competitiveness. Thereby attracting foreign direct investments for continuous upgrading of the cluster eco-system as this according to World Economic Forum is the only way to prosper and advance in the future. The report start out by taking the value chain perspective which shows that the primary value adding activities in this case are R&D combined with marketing/consumer insight. Together these two factors increase the value of the end-product. By analyzing the business environment via the diamond model a clear locational advantage that explains and shows the attractiveness of the decision to locate their global innovation center in Denmark outside Aarhus has come to recognition. The analysis concludes via the VRIO-framework that a sustained competitive advantage is present for respectively Arla Foods and the food-cluster. It is furthermore found that knowledge can have different characteristics and effects and that access to this often requires “insidership”, co-participation and is socially embedded which makes it difficult to access from distance. Other factors are also disseminative and absorptive capacity. These factors are inter-related as the disseminative capability is necessary to communicate knowledge in an easy-understandable way to trusted people/partners, but also that the absorptive capacity is needed in order to acquire, assimilate, transform and exploit information/knowledge to generate results and thereby increase the so-called efficiency factor (n) which is the ratio between “potential” and “realized” absorptive capacity. Lastly, the report concludes that the cluster collaboration provides Arla with a competitive advantage based on highly local and specialized people and institutions where “insidership”/co-participation is crucial for realizing the value of the knowledge.

EducationsGraduate Diploma in International Business, (Diploma Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2014
Number of pages90