Purpose: Reputation transfer between countries and companies, and its impact on the internationalization process of organizations is an emerging topic in the international business and marketing field. Using the resource-based view (RBV) and institutional theory as a theoretical framework, this study aims to describe the relationship between Colombia's reputation and its companies' perception from the perspective of the food and software industries. Design/methodology/approach: This qualitative, exploratory and descriptive study is based on data collected through the application of 24 interviews with experts and Colombian and global company's leaders. An analysis of the concepts, categories and relationships was conducted, followed by thick descriptions. Findings: There is reputation transfer between countries and organizations in the following cases: (1) during initial stages of the internationalization process, (2) within companies and industries that share values with the country of origin perceptions and (3) when the country of origin institutional context leverages the reputation transfer between companies and countries. Research limitations/implications: It contributes to the field by helping to the conceptualization of the process and adding important elements to the transfer process, such as actors and values, especially in country repositioning cases. Practical implications: The study provides inputs to policymakers for the creation of the country brand and the management of country image, and to businesses in their corporate image and reputation strategies. Originality/value: The uniqueness of this paper is based on the analysis of reputation transfer in an emerging country that is repositioning its image and reputation.