Local vs. global: which strategy is right for you?

Author:LaManna, Rock
Position:THE BOTTOM Line

Globalization is sweeping the business world, placing mounting pressure on small and large companies to expand. But is bigger always better? To answer this question, I'm highlighting two companies with differing viewpoints on the merits of going global vs. staying local.

Going global is a game of pros and cons. It can be fortuitous for those ready and able to expand. However, others either find the demands of globalization too challenging, or simply want to continue cashing in on their local edge.

Which strategy is right? That depends entirely on where you want to take your business, and where it's ready to go. Idencto and Lofton Label are two label printers with two different visions. As you'll see, it's not about the companies' physical growth, but the way each approaches its strategy that determines success.


Identco, headquartered in the Chicago area, has been a manufacturer of innovative product identification products since 1986, but it's the company's focus on high performance labels for demanding applications that has helped it create a unique niche in the marketplace.

CEO Scott Lucas plans to double the company's growth with an ambitious five-year strategic plan, taking full advantage of the Identco's international presence in North America, Latin America, Europe and Asia.

According to Lucas, the key to Identco's growth will be to continue innovating and collaborating with customers in creating durable, innovative, high-value products in three distinctive vertical markets: automotive, electronic and industrial.


Identco's decision to build lasting global relationships began six years ago, when it decided to focus on larger companies with locations across the globe. In doing so, it quickly began laying the necessary infrastructure in Asia, followed by Europe.

Now, with the infrastructure almost in place, the company turns its attention to ironing out a global strategy--finding international clients who value a long-term, globally-focused partnership.

It's an approach that's based more on the quality of the relationships than quantity. According to Lucas, he doesn't want to add hundreds of new clients per year. Rather, he wants to grow in a controlled way, partnering with clients whose global footprint is parallel to Identco's.

"We have to make sure that our clients and target customers want and value our global approach," Lucas says."We are extremely selective."

While finding...

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