We develop an integrative perspective on the role of coethnic ties and ties with foreign multinational enterprises (MNEs) – normally studied in isolation of each other – on the perceived legitimacy of international new ventures (INVs) from emerging economies. Building on the notions of people (interpersonal diaspora ties) and pipelines (interorganizational MNE ties) in Lorenzen and Mudambi's connectivity theory of clusters, we argue that these could contribute to the focal INV's internal and external legitimacy, respectively, as it seeks to upgrade its capabilities. We go a step further by highlighting people within pipelines – coethnic managers working in foreign MNEs – as a potentially important catalyst of the focal INV's cross-border legitimacy. Using an illustration of an INV from Bangalore, we note that India offers a fruitful setting – and one that is distinct from China – for future INV research into the role of people, pipelines and, in particular, people within pipelines.
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