This study discusses the perceptions, practices and challenges of African entrepreneurs in the currently dynamic and interconnected global business environment. In doing so, it develops a conceptual framework taking into account the objective of the paper, the African context as well as anecdotal facts based recommendations that are intended to help African entrepreneurs how to react and function within the interactions of the international business environment. Implications of these findings and future research directions are discussed.
Africa, horn of Africa, entrepreneurs, global, business, environment
The Horn of Africa (HoA) is one of the most geopolitically important regions of the world. For this paper, all the eight IGAD member states are categorized as HoA nations. They are: Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya; Somalia, the republic of South Sudan, the republic of Sudan and Uganda. According to the current population estimates, the HoA nations are endowed with over 230 million people (CIA Fact Book, 2014). The region is naturally, socially, environmentally, and culturally resourceful with agriculture, mineral reserves, hydropower, water resources, strategic geographical location, diversified climates, tourist attractions and vast archaeological sites for earliest traces of humanity (IGAD Report, 213; Habtu, 1993). The countries in the region share similarly rich cultural and linguistic heritage and socio-economic features. However, with all these potential resources, the HoA nations’ economic performance is currently among the lowest according to commonly acceptable economic performance indicators. For example, the average real per capital in the region is not more than $1200 (African Development Bank, 2014; World Bank, 2014). The role of the private sector in the national capital formation in the region is less than 15% while the external sector (import and export) accounted for a significant portion of the gross national capital format. This is very small even at the continent level. This phenomenal scenario indicates that the HoA nations have a long way to significantly curb their deep-rooted socio-economic, political and peace and security problems (Healy, 2011; Headey, 2012). However, the above competitive potential endowments coupled with a convenient climate and renewable energy abundant resources are not exploited as desired (Gu, 2009). Entrepreneurs i n t h e H o A n a t i o n s have a pivotal role to play in exploiting all those potential resources to foster the economic competitiveness of the region. They can also be the source of innovation and national wealth creation under conducive environment. Their b e t t e r acquaintance w i t h the local and international business dynamics is a good push factor for active engagement in the local, regional and international business environment. Nowadays, business activities are significantly affected by multi-dimensional factors at both macro and micro levels. Entrepreneurs need to be keen for creating a conducive ground for developing business network and collaboration with one another regionally and beyond. Business collaboration and networks are currently mandatory given the intricacies and formidable challenges of the current global socio-economic interactions. All these factors are important for promoting the geo-centric aspects of entrepreneurial activities. It is unfortunate that most of HoA entrepreneurs still devote their time and energy in the narrower local market domains. This is happening because of their unawareness of what is pushing the global reality (Ekeledo & Bewayo, 2009; Headey, Taffesse & You, 2012). Undoubtedly, this narrower outlook does not guarantee business sustainability and growth, rather enforces the detrimental effects of lost opportunities due to failure of using the full potential. Past studies highlighted that unpreparedness to boldly confront the global business and socio- economic reality is one of the causes of the downfall and untimely death of business ventures (Ogubazghi & Muturi, 2014; Arthur, 2012; Andualem, 2003). This gloomy situation should be reversed in the future by all legitimate means and through genuine cooperation and partnership with the win-win outcomes. HoA entrepreneurs are expected to contribute towards achieving these noble objectives. As has been expressed many times (African Development Bank, 2015; Ahmad, Halim, & Zainal, 2010; Anthony, 2015), genuine entrepreneurs are the engine of sustainable economic growth and innovation in a national economy. Economic growth means wealth creation and value addition to the society. Value addition and wealth creation do come from the input-transformation-output dynamic process. The role of entrepreneurship and innovation is pivotal for the effectiveness and efficiency of this vital process. In line with this, HoA nations should give high priority to the promotion of entrepreneurship and innovation. They should do this by supporting the current and future entrepreneurs through training and capacity building, incubation, experimentation and application. The mass involvement of entrepreneurs at grassroots level helps nations to create jobs massively and through that reduce poverty and accelerate broad based wealth creation efforts (Gantsho & Karani, 2007; McMullen, 2011; Awogbenle & Iwuamadi, 2010). Under proper governance and encouraging environment, entrepreneurs can make a pivotal contribution to the socio-economic development of the region. That is the main reason why various developing nations are striving to promote the culture of entrepreneurship and innovation at the grassroots level. Nowadays, entrepreneurs are confronting formidable challenges due to the outreach of global business environment and the socio-economic and technological interdependency of nations (Brixiova, 2010; Gatewood & Boko, 2009). This in turn has brought enormous intricacies and complexities in conducting business both domestically and internationally. Moreover, the impact of massive technological discoveries and innovations is now felt everywhere including in the vast rural areas of Africa with ever expanding outreach. Unfortunately, Entrepreneurs in the HoA nations are insufficiently aware of this phenomenon. Many of them have continued devoting their full time and energy in a limited local domain with rent seeking attitude and static business styles which does not warrant them the desired sustainability and growth. Although some studies have been conducted on African entrepreneurs in general (Ács & Virgill, 2009; Ahmad & Zainal, 2010; Ahmed & Nwankwo, 2013; Brixiova, 2010), there is a scarcity of research on HOWs and WHYs of entrepreneurs dealing with the ever pressing demands of global business environment. This paper therefore targeted the HoA nations with somewhat similar situation particularly considering the need of fostering entrepreneurial development as an important contributor of the national economic interactions.
The purpose and research question
This paper is conceptual dealing with the wake-up call for the need to act local and think global in all affecting global business environment. The aim is to fulfil the foundational background for further research on the activities, status and challenges of entrepreneurs in the Horn of Africa within the spectrum of the global business environment. The global business environment has several important dimensions that should be grasped by HoA entrepreneurs. Indeed, the global business environment is ubiquitous everywhere. The notions of integration and interdependency are hot global issues at this time and they will be in the future with the higher intensity. Thus, the main research question of our conceptual study is: how can HoA entrepreneurs strategically and tactically react to the demands of global business environment with the core objective of gaining more benefit? In potentially resourceful nations like those in the HoA, current and future entrepreneurs must enhance their resources and capabilities for ensuring sustainable survival and growth. Their strength and further development can enable them to foster their contribution to the strategic developmental agendas of the HoA nations. We believe that our paper will shed the light in the multi-dimensional efforts to improve the position and ability of HoA entrepreneurs within the current intricate international business environment.
Significance of the study
We believe that our study will have a significant contribution towards wake-up call for local entrepreneurs that they need to be aware the impact of global business environment and what they should do to benefit from as necessary. It should be the ultimate goal of entrepreneurs to play their rightful role in a national economy. Entrepreneurial based economic development cannot be achieve unless the domestic entrepreneurs are promoted and nurtured. The awareness of entrepreneurs on what is happening in the global business environment is a mandatory precondition. Otherwise, they may face formidable challenges in further advancing their entrepreneurial activities and development (Isenberg, 2008; Teagarden, 2012). The current situation of the entrepreneurs in the HoA needs to gear with the Act Local and Think Global motto. Sooner or later, the global business environment will have more impact on the HOWs and WHYs conducting the entrepreneurial modus operandi in the HoA. We need to highlight that business competition, even at rudimentary local level, has now global influence to certain extent. Entrepreneurs should expand their knowledge and acumen towards dealing within a complex and dynamic business environment in various dimensions. This challenge needs continuous improvement and dynamic flexibility. With this perspective, we believe that our study will enlighten HoA entrepreneurs about the vitality of enhancing their awareness on the global business environment. At least at anecdotal level, this paper can have a significant contribution towards enhancing the role of local entrepreneurs in the region in both local and global scene.
The developmental reality of the 21 st century is one of complex socio-cultural, economic, political and technological leaps forward and intricate challenges (Marques, 2007; Murphy & Carmody, 2015; Uhl, 2012; Kuratko, Hoskinson, & Wheeler, 2014). During the last 60 years, extraordinary entrepreneurial novelty and frequent occurrences of ground breaking technological innovations and discoveries as ‚Killer Applications‛ have been observed. Killer applications (or ‚Killer apps‛) are not merely innovations that improve the way something is done. They are not even something that merely changes a market or an industry. Killer applications are milestones in the technological development continuum that change the way society itself lives, works and functions (Schindehutt, 2009). Given the present widespread interest in emerging global markets and rapid technological development, internationalization in socio-economic and techno-scientific interactions will proceed in the future at higher speed (Mane, 2015; Rask, 2014; OECD Report, 2008; Department of Community and Economic Development, 2007; Hadjikhani, 2002). As the engine of economic growth, entrepreneurs need to be the main actors and drivers in the globalized businesses’ modus operandi (Henry et al, 2015; Nagler, 2012; Zander, McDougall-Covin & Rose, 2015). This should be the acceptable precondition for all active entrepreneurs and their ventures in both developing and developed nations. This epoch is the cradle of knowledgebased society and increased global integration of national economies. This developmental scene has forced business ventures of all sizes to expand their business engagement outreach beyond their domestic domains. This scenario is now imperative in more advanced nations (Groth, Esposito, & Tse, 2015; Wirtz, Tuzovic, & Ehret, 2015; Cavusgil, & Knight, 2015; Scherer, Palazzo, & Trittin, 2014). Increased competition and international cooperation are not contradictory. Rather, they are complementarities contributing to the process of global wealth creation and achieving sustainable socio-economic development. This is the positive side for entrepreneurs to think global and be ready for more externally instigated challenges (Ruzzier, Hisrich, & Antoncic, 2006; Naldi & Davidsson, 2014). On the other hand, globalized business environment with all its integration and interdependence in business and economic interaction has its own challenges. Stiff competition, trade domination, zero-some game are some of those challenges that need closer attention by entrepreneurs predominantly those existing in the developing nations (Naldi & Davidsson, 2014). Although there is a paucity of studies conducted addressing the unique situation like those in the HoA, it is a common knowledge that the HoA entrepreneurs should be knowledgeable of the global business environment given that the world community at large is no longer ignorant of what HoA as a region can bestow. This is in line with some foundational studies focusing on this particular regional scene (Thorbecke, 2013; IGAD Report, 213; Habtu, 1993; African Development Bank, 2014). So far, there is no focused study expressing the scale of dedication for this important precondition in their business operation. However it is also clear that, HoA entrepreneurs should be actively involved. Otherwise, the alternative is clear. Others do it on their behalf and right at their backyard. The global competition in areas such as manufacturing, trade, finance, construction and technology among other business activities is stiff as many emerging economies scaling up their involvement in global business interactions (Roberts, Hite, & Chorev, 2014). The global business environment has also created an atmosphere of cooperation and partnership at both macro and micro levels across business ventures, industries, countries and regional groupings (Morisson, 2002). Competition and inter/intra-country business cooperation and partnerships should not be seen as contradicting scenarios. Rather, H o A countries ought to see them as complementarities that contribute to wealth creation and indigenous entrepreneurial innovation endeavors. The new global objective reality is marked by sectoral shifts, policy reforms, greater global interactions and heightened influence of both economic and non-economic factors (IFC, 2011). This has enhanced the multidimensional role of enterprises and entrepreneurs in the international business environment. We need to realize that economic interactions are now filled with higher momentum for inter-company, bilateral, regional and global treaties, strategic business partnerships and major paradigm shifts that tend to make fundamental technoeconomic and socio-cultural transformations at every corner of the globe. These are the preconditions for active engagement in the rapidly internationalizing business environment by promoting strategic partnerships and cooperation in terms of subsidiaries, joint ventures, outsourcing, import-and-export links; technology transfer and business sharing, among others. These are mandatory prerequisites for HoA entrepreneurs if they are determined to remain competitive, vibrant and sustainable. As we are aware that more and more emerging countries, including those in the HoA are in the process of transforming their mode of economies from agrarian based to manufacturing and service dominated ones. This is a mandatory process in order to make fundamental socio-economic transformations in conformance to the existing global nature of business environment and economic interactions (McDade & Spring, 2005). The industrial and other productive economic sectors in the HoA are dominated by small enterprises (Beyene, 2002). T h i s m e a n s t h a t s m a l l b u s i n e s s o w n e r s ’ e n t r e p r e n e u r s h a v e t h e m a n d a t e o f nurturing their firms in order to continue to promoting a widespread tradition of innovation and entrepreneurship across the region. Other stakeholders including governments and their institutional capacities should also contribute their part by assuming the potential responsibility for economic prosperity and innovative competitiveness of nations (OECD, 2009). Small business Entrepreneurs in the HoA are now vividly affected by the growing global competition challenges in virtually all business areas including manufacturing, trade, finance, technology, transport and communication, information management, entrepreneurship, etc. This is happening largely due to the attitude and inactiveness of local entrepreneurs (Ekeledo & Bewayo, 2009). Anecdotal observations indicated that HoA entrepreneurs are more focused on local market domains which might not guarantee them long-term sustainability and growth given the current global business turbulence (Beyene, 2002). They are not also kin as desired about the important impact of technology on business sustainability. New systems, techniques, tools, skills, business modus operandi, operational systems, etc. are frequently emerged all around. As widely practiced in the developed environment, business ventures are expected to benefit from the continuously emerging appropriate technologies. The span of lifecycles of many technologies and products are becoming shorter and shorter at a faster rate. In fact, many of them are phasing out before being used and appreciated by entrepreneurs in both rural and urban domains. The pioneer in entrepreneurship and innovation, Schumpeter once said, entrepreneurs and the innovative way of searching for the new and the better are inseparable any time, everywhere and at any developmental stage (Schumpeter, 1934). This technological alertness can contribute significantly to the development of entrepreneurial ventures. As mentioned earlier, HoA entrepreneurs have a lot of challenges as they operate in economically less conducive environment for entrepreneurial development, and more prone to market imperfections. Still many of them have insufficient awareness of the opportunities in global markets (Vermeulen, 2011). They have continued devoting their full time and energy predominantly in limited and local domains which may limit their business sustainability and growth. This lack of awareness of global opportunities can become the major cause of business failures. Opportunities are knowingly or unknowingly available everywhere in developed and developing environment. Unfortunately, not many entrepreneurs and business professionals in HoA are conscious of the need to seriously engage in the global business environment. They are not ready to take the necessary measures and action plans to ensure their readiness for capitalizing the opened windows of opportunities. This readiness requires them to equip themselves with the desired appropriate acumen and skills for active engagement in the global business environment. In fact, they need to elevate their familiarities with the plethora of important related terminologies like global trade, exporting, diversity, economic trend, economic regime, business and trade cooperation and change and lack of change. For example, they need to know the WHYs and HOWs of regional trade agreements and designated free trade areas such as: the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), the Southern Africa Development Coordination Committee (SADCC), InterGovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), Preferential Trade Area for Eastern and Southern African States (PTA), the North American Free Trade Area (NAFTA), European Union (EU), Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) and many other Latin American, and African trade and economic cooperation blocks and bilateral agreements. Moreover, HoA entrepreneurs need to have a significant role within the ambit of international business if they are determined to enlighten themselves and clearly understand the details of the following: global trade regimes, regional and bilateral contexts in trade and economic partnerships, national socio-economic settings, industrial and economic productivity ambience, firm level corporate practices, and segment and sphere wise targets for the dynamics of business. An in depth knowledge of these can help them to negotiate the ins and outs of successful business practices in the potentially lucrative areas of business regionally, continentally and globally. Therefore entrepreneurs in the HoA should grasp that being ready for active engagement in international business requires a thorough understanding of: Why a company needs to actively engage beyond i t s l o c a l d o m a i n s ? How a company s h o u l d g o i n t e r n a t i o n a l ? What managerial attitudes and practices entrepreneurs should adopt to successfully engage in international business as the dynamic world realities demand at all levels? Korth (1985) has identified four degrees or levels of involvement in international business. The first level of involvement is expressed in terms of passive participation in the international business dealings and transactions. This means that a company deals indirectly through a third company. For example, when a company in Ghana wishes to invest in Eritrea or Ethiopia, it does this through a partner company in Kenya. The second level of involvement occurs when a company deals across borders by establishing representative offices or with the help of designated foreign trade agents (like import and export departments) with the exclusive mission of overseeing the international business dealings of that particular company. The third level of involvement in international dealings is reached when companies place a higher level of importance to international business in their overall structural framework and business strategy. However, they still regard themselves as domestically dominated. For example, Texas Instruments has many branches outside the United States, but the corporation still regards the US as its headquarters and main domestic market segment. The fourth and last level in the international business involvement process is the socalled full engagement. Companies at this level regard themselves as multi-national. They are fully in tune with all types of international business operations including foreign trade, foreign direct investment, etc. In other words, companies must have global organizational structures and managerial attitudes inclined to promoting internationalization of business operations. Entrepreneurs’ attitudes remain important in guiding firms’ endeavors in reaching higher levels of participation in international business operations. The existence of a truly international attitude among company entrepreneurs is important in determining the degree of venture success in the vital international business opportunity hunt.
Perlmutter (1985) has identified three primary attitudes among entrepreneurs that are involved in international business at different levels and in different sizes. He categorized entrepreneurs’ attitudes under three broader degrees: Ethnocentric; Polycentric, Geocentric. Entrepreneurs who entertain ethnocentric attitude see foreign countries, cultures, and even their people as inferior to their home country. They believe that home country entrepreneurial activities, managerial practices, culture, organization, planning, dressing, language is the best, and they try to impose their own entrepreneurial activities, living and interacting styles, working habits, managerial approaches, dress codes, etc. on the host country environment. Entrepreneurs with polycentric attitudes see all countries as being different and difficult to understand, and they consider this a good opportunity to learn and further develop their entrepreneurial and business acumen to successfully deal with the reality on the ground. They are inclined to let their foreign offices make their own decisions as they firmly believe that host country entrepreneurs know what is best in their own environment in terms of entrepreneurial innovation, language, government practices, political system and cultural heritages. The third one is the geocentric attitude and entrepreneurs who have this attitude fully recognize both the similarities and the differences among nations. They are savvy enough to broaden their pursuit for the intelligent human and entrepreneurial assets no matter where they are located. They persistently attempt to draw the most effective entrepreneurial and business operational methods from any place and at any time. They fully focus on drawing the best qualified for the higher entrepreneurial alertness and best managerial and operational practices for achieving quality, efficiency, effectiveness, innovation and sustained competitive advantage. The reality check reveals that entrepreneurs show varying degrees of each of these attitudes. However, it is good for their firms if entrepreneurs undermine the ethnocentric attitude and endorse the geocentric attitude. This can help to successfully deal with the Herculean task of engaging in international business within the contextual aspects of best enterprising, globalization, sophisticated and customized based consumerism, culture dynamics, new standards, and costbenefit of challenges and opportunities. Successful engagement in the international business environment demands active involvement in decision making under uncertain scenarios. At least, the involvement should cover the broad areas of resources and investment mobilization even in a rudimentary business environment, skills and talent acquisition, transfer of technologies and venture management skills. HoA entrepreneurs have to know that all these require the commitment of time and resources and the joint efforts of all stakeholders at mega, macro, mezzo, and micro levels. As previous studies revealed, there are numerous generally expressed positive and negative factors influencing entrepreneurs’ internationalization endeavors in developing nations including those in HoA (OECD, 2009; ECA, 2000; Keith, 1990). They are summarized more or less as follows: Import tariffs; cumbersome procedures and regulatory problems; scarcity of firms resources including required entrepreneurial and managerial acumen and limited international contacts; lack of the desired motives for growth and knowledge related motives for internationalization; policy implementation problems; the attitude of regulatory governmental and public institutions; poor administrative practices; corruption and discrimination; weak domestic institutional capacities; the legal and judicial system governing international business activities. Another important factor is the HoA entrepreneurs’ scant orientation on the mechanisms of borderless mobilization of business. To correct this they should make helpful efforts to enhance the ability to benefit from external environment mainly from external links, social ties, foreign investors and entrepreneurs links and other infrastructures facilitating internationalization is also fundamental (OECD, 2009).
In this paper, we developed a conceptual framework, as shown in Figure 1, to cover the main features of the intended study and their presumed relationships (Bhattacherjee, 2012). According to Argyrous (2000), the choice of variables for conducting investigation is affected by a number of complex factors: theoretical framework, pre-specified research agenda and curiosity-driven research. Nevertheless, the three motivational attributes are obviously not mutually exclusive. Bhattacherjee (2012) further suggests the variables chosen should depend on the problems being researched and the kinds of predictability sought. As remarked by Bhattacherjee (2012), a framework is a means of indicating the direction of the action needed, it is not an end in itself. Therefore, our methodological approach followed the above expressed elements of conceptually based study.
The main goal of this paper is to develop a conceptual framework through which to analyze the practices and challenges of entrepreneurs in the HoA. To that objective, first we developed a conceptual framework taking into account the HoA context. As briefly discussed earlier, the degree of direct and indirect implications of internationalization efforts exerted by HoA entrepreneurs for growth and sustainability of their business ventures have created significant disparities on firms’ confidence and effectiveness majority to the rudimentary side (Ekeledo & Bewayo, 2009). Implications are situational and influenced by a variety of internal and external factors attributed to economic, social, cultural, political or environmental realities. In line with this, HoA entrepreneurs need to know the fundamental fact that they are primarily responsible for their sustainable survival, viability and progress. This means that their strategic objective and operational competence, entrepreneurial innovativeness, organizational and managerial resourcefulness, flexibility, skillful use of technology and superior performance largely determine their level of involvement in the international business. This means, they should improve their current nominal efforts towards broadening their business activities beyond the local domain. International competition even in the classically monopolized domestic market is stiff and entrepreneurs in general have continued facing formidable challenges in securing their market share persistently. A widespread global competition has continued to diminish the role of the bricks and mortar business activities. HoA entrepreneurs’ excessive focus on domestic market and clinging on conservative business culture and operational modus operandi have become potentially detrimental even to the broader national economies of HoA nations. Taking the necessary actions to change this traditional approach is essential. All stakeholders at both public and private capacities should play a joint supportive role to improve the situation (Zucchella & Palamara, 2007). Active participation in business activities internationally demands dedication and readiness to face intricate challenges skillfully. Entrepreneurs in the region are primarily responsible for strengthening their internal resourcefulness to meet the plethora of requirements. Many entrepreneurs inappropriately assume that conducting business internationally is solely involving import-export activities (Roberts, et al, 2014). However, as earlier mentioned, they should be aware that international business activities also involve numerous other activities namely: direct investment; business partnership and joint ventures; consulting; technology and skill transfer; participation in mining exploration and transport services, etc. The HoA’s entrepreneurs should be at forefront in exploiting the potential and building massive capacities in all socio-economic sectors. Improvement and development are continuous processes that are necessary for countries to redouble their efforts to improve their efficiency and effectiveness for achieving sustainable economic development. This is mandatory under any circumstance. It is true that entrepreneurs in economically depressed areas are always eager to boost their business activities locally and internationally. However, sheer wish alone doesn’t help. Rather, they should take practical course of actions to keep up their viability and competitiveness. They should do this by rejuvenating their strength, marginalize their weakness, exploit their foreseeable opportunities and avoid threats that might come from potential rivals at both local and international levels. This requires hard work and meticulous efforts in all aspects. They should also take into consideration the importance of hiring well trained, globally exposed, knowledgeable management professionals and other technical professionals at large. This action is mandatory for active and beneficial engagement in global business. After all the collaboration of academic institutions in training qualified professionals that can play a catalyst role in enhancing involvement in international business activities. This means that entrepreneurial community and academic and training institutions should establish partnership and collaboration incubating the desired young talent as important actors to enhance entrepreneurial engagement in the internationalization of business activities. Society’s developmental dynamics is comprising of complex issues that are expressed in several dimensions. We should measure, consider, and evaluate this complex nature in several dimensions in order to have a full and holistic framework. These are: economic, technological, political, human, environmental, socio-cultural, historical, scientific and geographical dimensions. The reason is clear, we cannot handle it as desired without considering all those factors affecting its movement towards achieving the aspired objectives. It is also useful to develop entrepreneurship eco-system that incorporated at least the core components as shown in Figure 2. Developing this type of eco-system can help to gain the support and facilitation from major stakeholders. HoA entrepreneurs should also endeavor to learn and adapt to unfamiliar cultures, formalities, courtesies and other socio-cultural values and life styles of different societies. For example, the African Ubuntu and Arhibu, the Indian Caste System, the Latino Amigo, the North American Informalities, and the European protocol conscious approaches are shrouded with different socio-cultural values and life styles rooted in the different milestones of human history. HoA entrepreneurs should have open mindedness to embrace these challenges for mutual benefit. Increased globalized business interaction means more challenges and more opportunities for entrepreneurs to conduct business. Greater international competition means more complexity for local enterprises as they enter into a fray of stiff competition in the international markets.
Conclusions And Direction For Future Research
We attempted to briefly discuss some issues focusing on the WHYS and HOWS of HoA entrepreneurs’ involvement in global business environment. Changes and developmental dynamics are happening every day and every hour around the globe. Whereas HoA entrepreneurs express their eagerness to boost business activities locally and internationally, sheer wish alone is not sufficient. They need to prepare themselves more than ever to face the current and forthcoming challenges. This requires hard work and collaborative efforts in all fronts and at all levels. The world’s stock of knowledge is currently doubling every few years. The remotely observed events are here with us with the whole context of global business environment. Let HoA entrepreneurs expand business across Africa and beyond, this is not utopian rather possible case scenario. It should be primary by them and for them. This is a call for the able and talented entrepreneurs in the region. There is no doubt that the current and future HoA entrepreneurial talent will do that. This is an era of technology and information that all stakeholders need to capitalize for the best socio-economic purposes. Academic and training institutions have a cardinal role to shape professionals of tomorrow that entrepreneurs desperately looking to hire for internationalizing business activities. The future will continue to bring many surprises and breakthroughs in all aspects of life and in all economic and non-economic events and land marks all over the world. HoA entrepreneurs need to engage in all dimensions of current realties and prepare themselves for the future realities to make the continent a better place. Above all, HoA entrepreneurs need to a strong network of collaboration and joint actions. They should do that in collaboration with other stakeholders across the continent and beyond in order to push their agenda of active involvement in the fast globalizing business interactions. This study extends previous research in the role of entrepreneurs [in the currently dynamic and interconnected global business environment] in general and that of the HoA in particular. We believe that it is an important step forward in understanding the prevailing practices and challenges facing HoA entrepreneurs and factors that enhance their effectiveness in the rapidly changing and dynamic business environment.
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