Swiss SME rely on seizing international opportunities to grow their business. In the digital age, the potential in international markets is of even greater importance, as technology not only facilitates access to foreign markets, but also enables international competitors to compete with Swiss companies at home and abroad. Now more than ever, Swiss SME owners and managers need to think actively about their internationalization to remain competitive and respond effectively to changing conditions in foreign markets, created by trends such as digital transformation and the increasing demand for sustainable products and services.

The team of experts at the Institute for Competitiveness and Communication (ICC) at the FHNW School of Business supports you in the strategic internationalization of your company with tools, courses as well as research and consultancy projects.

SME Internationalization Canvas for Strategy Workshops

To help your company identify international or global opportunities, the expert team has developed the «Value-Based SME Internationalization Canvas: Strategic Internationalization for SME» workshop canvas. The canvas is intended to guide SME through a strategy workshop process and ensure that a sound, capability and value-based internationalization strategy is developed that will support the development of your firm’s international competitiveness.

You can obtain the workshop canvas here free of charge in PDF format. Please contact us for further questions and organizing workshops for your company.

International Market Research and Strategies (Consulting and Research Projects)

Our team supports you in six areas, gaining market research insights for decision making, developing your internationalization/globalization strategy, and building the knowledge needed to overcome challenges.

The ICC team provides the following market research and strategy services:

  1. Assessment of the potential of the foreign market
    Systematic evaluation of the attractiveness of international markets
  1. Innovative services/offers
    Innovation processes for the development of (new) services/value propositions for international markets
  1. International value creation strategy
    Adjustment, arbitrage and/or aggregation of products and services
  1. Your company abroad
    Market entry into foreign markets and forms of operation
  1. Ownership and control strategies
    International corporate governance («subsidiary governance»)
  1. Legal strategies
    Contracts, intellectual property, ownership structures, etc.

Please contact us to discuss your needs and how we can assist you!

Executive Education Courses

Starting in 2022, we will offer short online courses in cooperation with foreign universities and experts, which will provide SME with the necessary initial knowledge for a possible internationalization for their target markets/regions. Please contact us for the course programme.


For our customers, we combine the know-how of a wide range of experts to offer solutions, reach new markets and generate added value. Please contact us for an initial discussion:

johan lindeque

Dr. Johan Lindeque

Dr. Johan Lindeque is a lecturer at the FHNW School of Business and a recognized expert on the internationalization of SME.


FHNW Fachhochschule Nordwestschweiz

FHNW University of Applied Sciences Northwestern Switzerland

School of Business
Institute for Competitiveness and Communication
Riggenbachstrasse 16
4600 Olten

Selected publications

doing business in europe
G. Suder & J. P. Lindeque (2018): Doing Business in Europe (3rd ed.).
London: SAGE Publications.
the routledge companion to european business
G. Suder, M. Riviere & J. P. Lindeque
(Eds.) (2018): The Routledge Companion to European Business.
Abingdon: Routledge.
european journal of international management
W. F. Merkestein & J. P. Lindeque
(2019): Demerged Multinational Enterprises: A Study of Post-Demerger International Strategies. European Journal of International
Management (14:1), 2019, pp. 55–91.
journal of strategy and management
M. K. Peter, C. Kraft & J. P. Lindeque
(2020): Strategic Action Fields of Digital Transformation: An Exploration of the Strategic Action Fields of Swiss SMEs and Large Enterprises.
Journal of Strategy and Management
(13:1), pp. 160–180.