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IT-Ration’s Quest for Growth: A Market Choice Challenge

Case 9 00 2014 003
Case published in the International Journal of Case Studies in Management, Vol. 12, No. 4
Languages : 
  • English
  • Motivation,
  • Internationalization,
  • Entry mode,
  • Branding,
  • Entrepreneurship
Year of production : 
Registration date : 
Teaching notes included : 

This case uses the story of IT-Ration, a small firm based in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, to enable students to conduct an in-depth analysis of the founding manager, the firm, and the industry so as to make a strategic growth decision. The story unfolds in 2009 at a time when IT-Ration was at a crossroads – should it continue to focus on the Quebec market or go into the U.S. in order to grow? Remaining in Quebec meant that the business would face problems related to limited market size. However, a move to the U.S. would also bring its share of challenges. The entrepreneur had to weigh the pros and cons in order to make an informed decision.

Primary domain : 
International business
Secondary domain : 
Management  - Entrepreneurship
Sectors : 
  • Professional, scientific and technical services
Source : 
HEC Montréal
Type : 
Traditional case (Decision-making case)
Type of data used in the production of the case : 
Factual data that is public and free of potentially litigious content
Event location : 
Montreal, QC, Canada
Year of start of the event : 
Year the event ended : 
Business size : 
Small- and medium-sized
Main themes covered
  • Internationalization motivations
  • Brand recognition
  • Barriers to internationalization
  • International operation mode
Teaching objectives

Students will:

  • learn about different options for firm growth, including local market expansion and exploring opportunities at the international level;
  • learn about the impact of consumer perception on firm growth and approaches to firm branding when entering international markets;
  • analyze international market-entry strategies;
  • learn about approaches to overcoming internationalization barriers.
Concepts and theories related to the case
  • Internationalization drivers
  • Influence of socio-cultural factors on brand recognition and consumer perception
  • Relationship between the firm and its context
  • Transaction cost on entry mode choice