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What can Latin‐American entrepreneurs learn from Catalan gazelles?

Veneta Andonova (Department of Business, American University in Bulgaria, Blagoevgrad, Bulgaria, Universidad de los Andes, Bogota, Colombia)
Alexandina Stoyanova (Department of Economics, Universidad de Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain)
Carlos Valencia (Department of Business, Pontificia Universidad Javeriana, Bogota, Colombia, Universidad de los Andes, School of Management, Bogota, Colombia)
Jorge Juliao‐Rossi (Department of Business, Universidad de la Salle, Bogota, Colombia, Uiversidad de los Andes, School of Management, Bogota, Colombia)

Academia Revista Latinoamericana de Administración

ISSN: 1012-8255

Article publication date: 23 August 2013

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to systematize the strategic capabilities of seven surviving industrial Catalan companies which were going through explosive growth in 1999.

Design/methodology

We use the comparative case studies method to draw on the common features among the seven in‐debt cases we built. We are well aware that the method of comparative case studies does not provide a sufficient base for bold generalizations. However, the qualitative approach adopted here allows for the first in‐depth look at the strategies that bring surviving entrepreneurs from explosive growth to a more balanced growth path.

Findings

We identify four organizational capabilities as key to the survival of these businesses ten years later: first, ability to prioritize product and market development, including internationalization, over operations; second, ability to reorganize internally and delegate in a timely manner; third, ability to manage innovation and support creativity linked to productivity; and finally, ability to manage economic and financial resources.

Social implications

Implications for the culturally proximate and less‐studied Latin‐American gazelles are presented.

Propósito

El propósito de este artículo es sistematizar las capacidades estratégicas de siete empresas catalanas sobrevivientes y consideradas gacelas en 1999.

Metodología

Se usa el método de estudio de casos comparativos para identificar las características de interés investigativo. Se es consciente de que el método de estudio de casos empleado, no proporciona una base suficiente para hacer generalizaciones de los hallazgos. No obstante, el enfoque cualitativo adoptado proporciona una primera mirada en profundidad de las estrategias que permitieron a los empresarios que sobrevivieron al crecimiento explosivo, seguir una senda de crecimiento más equilibrada.

Resultados

Se identificaron cuatro capacidades organizacionales consideradas clave para la supervivencia de la empresa diez años después del crecimiento explosivo: 1) capacidad para priorizar dentro de sus operaciones el desarrollo de productos y mercados, incluyendo la internacionalización, 2) capacidad de reorganizar internamente y delegar de manera oportuna, 3) capacidad de gestión de la innovación y apoyar la creatividad ligada a la productividad y 4) capacidad de gestionar los recursos económicos y financieros.

Consecuencias (Implicaciones) sociales

Se presentan implicaciones para las gacelas localizadas en países latinoamericanos, las cuales son culturalmente próximas y escasamente estudiadas.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

This paper is based on the interviews done for the study by Amat et al. (2010) published in the series Papers d’Economia Industrial of the Department of Innovation, Universities and Enterprise of the Catalan Government. This study received financial support from the European Commission through the Integrated Project CIT3‐513420, the Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation, through grants ECO2008‐01116, ECO2010‐20829 and ECO2011‐29445; the Catalan Government Science Network SGR2009‐359 as well as from XREPP‐Xarxa de referència en Economia i Política Públiques. The authors thank Elvira Salgado, Enrique Ogliastri and two anonymous reviewers for their suggestions. The authors take responsibility for all remaining errors.

Citation

Andonova, V., Stoyanova, A., Valencia, C. and Juliao‐Rossi, J. (2013), "What can Latin‐American entrepreneurs learn from Catalan gazelles?", Academia Revista Latinoamericana de Administración, Vol. 26 No. 2, pp. 290-317. https://doi.org/10.1108/ARLA-06-2013-0069

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2013, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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