Financial Services and Emerging Markets


In his PhD dissertation entitled Financial Services and Emerging Markets, Bas Karreman addresses the organization and strategy of firms in emerging markets. The main topics relate to the expansion strategies of multinational banks in Central and Eastern Europe, and the organization of the demand for capital by Chinese firms across the financial centers of mainland China and Hong Kong. Overall, the findings indicate that, in an increasingly competitive and globalizing financial industry, the organization and strategy of firms in emerging markets largely depend on the characteristics of the institutional and business environment. The discussion on the competitiveness of financial centers in mainland China and Hong Kong is still ongoing and often referred to in newspapers, on internet forums, and in other popular media in South-East Asia. This study provides interesting new insights, particularly for CEOs and policy makers, in the organization and strategy of firms contributing to the development of financial services in emerging markets.

Bas Karreman defended his dissertation on November 4, 2010 at Erasmus School of Economics, Erasmus University. His promotors were Prof.dr. Bert van der Knaap and Prof.dr. Enrico Pennings. Other members of the doctoral committee were Prof.dr. Ron Boschma, Prof.dr. Harry Commandeur, and Prof.dr. Justin Jansen.

About Bas Karreman

Bas Karreman was born on November 6, 1978 in Heenvliet, the Netherlands. He obtained his Master of Science in business economics from the Erasmus University Rotterdam in 2005, after which he started his academic career at the same university. The year prior to the start of his PhD project in September 2006, he was involved in organizing and teaching the new course ‘Organization and Strategy’ for bachelor 1 students at the Erasmus School of Economics.

Bas’ main interests are in the field of organization and strategy, with a particular focus on the financial services industry and emerging markets. Most of his work relates to financial center development in mainland China and Hong Kong and network development of multinational banks in Central and Eastern Europe. He presented his papers at various international conferences and published work in internationally-refereed journals such as Environment and Planning A, Regional Studies and the Journal of Economic and Social Geography. In 2009, Bas was a visiting scholar at Bocconi University in Milan, Italy for four months.

Currently, he works as an assistant professor at the Department of Applied Economics on a research project together with SEOR B.V. He still coordinates and teaches the course ‘Organization and Strategy’, for which he was elected Lecturer-of-the-Year by the students of the economics and business program in 2009-2010. Since 2008, he is also liaison officer at the Erasmus University China Center.

Abstract of Financial Services and Emerging Markets

This study addresses the organization and strategy of firms in emerging markets with an explicit application to financial services. Given the relevance of a well-functioning financial system for economic growth, understanding the organization and strategy of firms contributing to the development of sound financial services appears of utmost importance for emerging markets. Throughout the study, two main providers of financial services are distinguished, namely banks and stock markets, which are examined in the emerging market context of Central and Eastern Europe and China, respectively.

For banking, the general focus is on the adopted strategies of multinational banks to expand across the Central and Eastern European region. The main findings indicate that, based on the degree of host market uncertainty and competition, multinational banks adopt different expansion strategies. Furthermore, it appears that multinational banks expand most effectively by establishing new subsidiaries in countries adjacent to a country where the bank already has a presence. For stock markets, the central theme is how the decision of mainland Chinese firms on where to list their shares reflects the attractiveness of the stock markets within the financial centers of Shanghai, Shenzhen and Hong Kong. The findings suggest an increasing segregation in the strategic listing decisions that mainland Chinese firms make, which indicates that the financial centers of mainland China and Hong Kong have become more specialized and complementary over time.