Do Firm-Bank Relationships Affect Firms’ Internationalization?

38 Pages Posted: 5 Apr 2015

Date Written: November 20, 2014


The goal of this paper is to investigate the link between the length of a firm-bank relationship and firm’s internationalization. The analysis is carried out on matched firm-bank micro-data from a survey of Italian enterprises from 1998 to 2003. We obtain two main results. First, a longer relationship with the main bank fosters firms’ foreign direct investment (FDI) while it does not affect the export status of the enterprises not engaging in FDI. Second, the probability of a firm undertaking FDI further increases if its main bank is itself internationalized by holding foreign subsidiaries.

Keywords: internationalization, foreign direct investments, export, external finance, firm-bank relationships, bank internationalization mode

JEL Classification: D21, F10, F21, F23, G21

Suggested Citation

De Bonis, Riccardo and Ferri, Giovanni and Rotondi, Zeno, Do Firm-Bank Relationships Affect Firms’ Internationalization? (November 20, 2014). Bank of Italy Occasional Paper No. 251, Available at SSRN: or

Riccardo De Bonis (Contact Author)

Bank of Italy ( email )

Via Nazionale 91
00184 Roma

Giovanni Ferri

LUMSA University ( email )

Via della Traspontina
Roma, Rome 00192


Zeno Rotondi

UniCredit Group ( email )

Via Andegari, 12
Milan, 20122

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