What Is a Nanoglobal Company?

Patrick Ward Patrick Ward Follow Nov 21, 2020 · 3 mins read
What Is a Nanoglobal Company?

Nanoglobal Definition

Nanoglobals are essentially micro-multinationals; small to mid-size companies with workforces in the 50–1,000 range that operate across multiple countries, usually through a combination of remote workers or small branch offices. Thanks to the internet, nanoglobals can take advantage of global workforces and international markets in ways that were previously only accessible to enterprise-scale multinational corporations.

Examples of Nanoglobal Companies

Miro: Nanoglobal Operating in the US and Europe

Miro is a nanoglobal tech company with around 225 employees based in the US but with branch offices in Perm, Russia and Amsterdam, Netherlands.

Company at whiteboard.
Miro is a nanoglobal company operating in the US, Netherlands, and Russia, with international customers for their SaaS product.

Miro leverages both international workforces and international sales markets to maximize the global reach of their product. This model is increasingly common with mid-size SaaS (Software as a Servicce) companies, since they have a purely digital product and low marginal costs to expand.

Rootstrap: Nanoglobal Operating in the US and Latin America

Rootstrap is a nanoglobal company operating primarily in the US, with branch offices in Uruguay, and Argentina. Rootstrap’s LA headquarters has only a handful of employees, while the bulk of their 135-strong workforce and executive team is spread across the rest of the US and Latin America in Montevideo, NYC, and Buenos Aires branch offices. The company also leverages a small remote workforce of individual contractors spread across the globe, such as virtual assistants in the Philippines.

Rootstrap team photo.
Rootstrap is a nanoglobal company operating in the US, Uruguay, and Argentina, with primarily US-based clients.

Rootstrap’s client base is primarily in the US, and includes big-name clients like Tony Robbins and Masterclass. While the sales and client-base is mostly in the US, Rootstrap’s use of international branch offices and distribution of executives across multiple countries makes them a nanoglobal company.

The Nanoglobal Trend

Nanoglobal companies are primarily made possible by three big trends:

  1. The internet.
  2. Low-cost legal compliance.
  3. Cultural globalization.

The internet (remote work)

Telecommuting makes it possible for companies to hire workers wherever they like, provided the employee function is “knowledge work” like programming, design, or copywriting.

Multinationals have been able to take advantage of lower-cost remote workforces for decades thanks to their capacity for legal and administrative overhead.

It’s only recently that the ability to hire in other countries became more accessible, thanks to Global PEO services like Deel and Globalization Partners, or even UpWork for smaller one-off projects.

These services make it cost-effective for small to mid-size companies to hire in lower-cost higher-skill labor markets based on talent rather than location, without worrying about being sued for everything they have if they miss a piece of paperwork.

Cultural globalization (similarity of international markets)

Finally, the biggest factor of all behind the nanoglobal trend: globalization itself. Software companies like Ahrefs can sell their product to the US, EU, AUS, and other large English-speaking markets with ease since the problems and goals of customers in each location are pretty similar — and their expectations of what the UI and UX of a digital product should be are quite similar as well.

Resources for Nanoglobal Companies

Patrick Ward
Written by Patrick Ward Follow
Hi, I'm Patrick. I made this site to share my expertise on team augmentation, nearshore development, and remote work.