The case of US companies in Switzerland




Subsidiaries of US companies were an important group among the foreign firms active in Switzerland. In the first section of the paper, the main theoretical arguments are outlined, followed by a quantitative overview on US direct investments and the number and activities of US firms in Switzerland. Some categories of US companies are analysed more closely. In order to assess their impact on the Swiss economy we distinguish between investments in economic sectors where US firms had a clear competitive advantage and investments in industries dominated by strong and internationally competitive Swiss firms. Analysing foreign investments in Switzerland in a long-term perspective leads to new insights into the relationship between location-specific and corporation-specific endowments.

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The Business History Seminar has been made possible by financial support from the Erasmus Research Institute of Management (ERIM) and the Vereniging Trustfonds Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam.
Contact information:
Marten Boon