Date of Conferral



Doctor of Business Administration (D.B.A.)


Business Administration


Lionel S. de Souza


In the United States, although foreign-born individuals are more than twice as likely to start new ventures, immigrant-owned businesses often fail within the first 5 years. The purpose of this single case study was to explore the strategies that U.S.-based Togolese small business owners who were engaged in entrepreneurial activities in Togo. The Schumpeterian entrepreneurship theory underpinned the study and served as a theoretical reference. Interview data were collected from 20 successful Togolese small business owners who resided in the Washington D.C. metropolitan area, who were engaged in entrepreneurial activities in Togo, and who had been in business for more than 5 years. Data analysis involved using coding techniques and word clustering, with the invocation of qualitative data analytical software. The use of methodological triangulation enabled deeper analysis and added to the rigor of the study. The 4 key themes emerging from the coding and thematic analysis of interviews included (a) entrepreneurial motivation and attributes, (b) overcoming financial hardship, (c) leveraging information technologies, and (d) addressing challenges in the dual business environment. The findings of the study may advance contribution to positive social change as immigrant business owners may use the knowledge to improve business success, which could lead to the creation of jobs and improvement in the standard of living of U.S.-based Togolese entrepreneurs. The discoveries from the research may also contribute to positive social change for local communities in Togo, as the diaspora flow of investments and remittances from the United States may increase.