• FDI;
  • performance;
  • internationalization;
  • longitudinal research design;
  • information cost theory

Studies on the internationalization-performance relationship use different theories and arguments to justify shapes of this relationship that apply to certain types and strategies of firms. To reach convergence, we develop an information-cost model that incorporates firm type and strategy variables as moderators of a generally S-shaped relationship. We test the model on a panel of 3,398 firms as well as on subpanels representing different types and strategies of firms. As predicted, we find S-shaped relationships that are attenuated for manufacturing firms and for large firms, show a less progressively rising component for internationally expanding firms and are more positive for firms that operate in geographically and culturally distant countries. The results help integrate earlier findings that are produced from distinct samples and variable ranges.