A latecomer firm’s success in Argentina: The ‘contrarian’ strategies of Tenaris

Javier Papa, Michael Hobday

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper analyses the case of a ‘latecomer’ firm in Argentina which was unusually successful over a prolonged period despite adverse economic and policy conditions. The paper develops a simple conceptual framework to guide an in-depth case study of the strategies adopted by the firm (Tenaris). The paper examines the strategies of Tenaris as it gained technology and exported successfully within a situation of economic crisis and inward-looking industrial policies, while other firms failed to grow and prosper and general industrial decline occurred. The evidence suggests that a long-term ‘contrarian’ strategy, with a focus on exports and innovation was central to the firm’s achievements. As an exploratory study, the paper concludes with further research questions arising from the case and implications for policy and corporate strategy.
Original languageEnglish
JournalDevelopment and Change
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 7 Jul 2016

Bibliographical note

This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Javier Papa & Michael Hobday, A latecomer firm’s success in Argentina: The ‘contrarian’ strategies of Tenaris, Development and Change, which has been published in final form at:. This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Self-Archiving.


  • Latecomer development
  • catch-up
  • latecomer firms
  • corporate strategy
  • innovation
  • Argentina


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