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Browsing by Author "Evokari, Auri"

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  • Evokari, Auri (2016)
    While the economy in Finland is stagnating, the growing economy of Kenya creates much needed export opportunities for Finnish companies. However, only a few have dared to enter this market. This thesis explores this issue from a cultural point of view – how do Finnish people conducting business in Kenya experience the business culture in Kenya, the markets and the future of them? By specifically focusing on Kenya and Finland, this thesis examines the results of the extensive culture research done by Geert Hofstede. We discover that East African countries are culturally a lot closer to Finland than some of Finland’s most important trade partners such as Russia or China. The relevance of this research is discussed in mind of the development in wealth, technological strides and the generational change under way especially in Sub Saharan Africa. In this qualitative research we gain the understanding of how Finnish business representatives experience the Cultural Dimensions of Power Distance and Individualism in Kenya, what kind of opportunities they recognize and what challenges they have encountered. The findings show that the high power distance and collectivist business culture in Kenya is still evident, but does not pose serious threats to operating in Kenya. The experiences and views of the business culture and markets in Kenya are generally very positive. The challenges encountered are of practical nature, with corruption being the biggest issue. When comparing to other countries, Kenya is viewed as an easy culture to adopt into and the markets are deemed more favorable there than in many other countries. Advice regarding the attitude of Finnish company representatives and ways on how to make market entries are shared. Governmental actions and the way media is displaying Africa are criticized by the interviewees.