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Article
Publication date: 8 January 2019

Antonella La Rocca, Andrea Perna, Andrea Sabatini and Enrico Baraldi

While several studies have focused on the initial phases of new ventures and their first customer and supplier relationships, we have a limited understanding of how the…

Abstract

Purpose

While several studies have focused on the initial phases of new ventures and their first customer and supplier relationships, we have a limited understanding of how the new venture’s portfolio of customer relationships emerges. This paper aims to explore the emergence of the customer relationship portfolio of a new venture and to investigate the effects of early relationships on subsequent ones.

Design/methodology/approach

Methodologically, the authors rely on a longitudinal single case study of a new venture which develops, implements and sells customized cost-management software. The study is exploratory and based on 24 in-depth interviews.

Findings

The findings show that the development of a customer portfolio depends on the cumulative effect of heterogeneous elements and network connections. These include the initial link between the new venture and the first customer and a subsequent series of interconnections that develop with the emerging network capability of the new venture.

Originality/value

As one of the few studies that explore the emergence of new ventures’ customer relationship portfolio, this study demonstrates the value of applying a relational/network approach for studying relationship portfolio dynamics.

Details

Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, vol. 34 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0885-8624

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 13 August 2018

Simone Guercini, Andrea Runfola, Andrea Perna and Matilde Milanesi

Abstract

Details

IMP Journal, vol. 12 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2059-1403

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Article
Publication date: 4 June 2020

Jens Ola Eklinder-Frick, Andrea Perna and Alexandra Waluszewski

The aim of this paper is to outline what the intended benefits the smart specialization strategy (S3) is meant to create, and through what policy measures; that is, to…

Abstract

Purpose

The aim of this paper is to outline what the intended benefits the smart specialization strategy (S3) is meant to create, and through what policy measures; that is, to shed light over what underpinnings S3 is based on, and if the measures based on these can affect the relations between “academia, businesses, and local authorities” – where the public and the private actors might have partly overlapping interests, but with different needs and rationales.

Design/methodology/approach

The research design of this paper is based on the industrial marketing and purchasing network approach, that is, the empirical observation that business exchange has a content, which affects and gives imprints on the actors engaged in the exchange. To determine whether the S3 strategy in general, and in the two investigated regions in particular, can affect the embedding of innovations in using, producing and developing settings, and if so how, this study applied the actors–resources–activities model. In addition to investigation of the S3 strategy in general, two case studies were conducted, one each in two European Union regions with rather different business and academic research characteristics: the Marche region in Italy and the Uppsala region in Sweden.

Findings

The S3 measures rest on the judgement of which “domains” to support can be made by policy actors without deeper analysis of how the assumed firms representing these domains are related in terms of how resources are combined and activated. Instead, the S3 policy analysis is based on local policy organizations desk table investigations of what appears as innovative. Hence, in practice, the key S3 measure is still to transfer knowledge from the public to the private sector. This entails that support in terms of how to create change in established resources interfaces, which is a main source of innovation to which both established and emerging localized firms are related, remains out of policy sight.

Originality/value

The ambition with this paper is to discuss what changes S3 – with the ambition to develop and match academic research to business needs – implies and what underpinnings it is resting on. Hence, the focus is directed to what new types of policy arrangements are supposed to result in what types of benefits – and last but not least, the ability for these to interfere with businesses which are interconnected across spatial borders.

Details

Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, vol. 35 no. 12
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0885-8624

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 13 March 2017

Alexandra Waluszewski, Enrico Baraldi and Andrea Perna

Contemporary innovation policy investments rests on the assumption that the main problematic interface is the one between the non-business developing setting and a rather…

Abstract

Purpose

Contemporary innovation policy investments rests on the assumption that the main problematic interface is the one between the non-business developing setting and a rather friction-free producer and user setting. Given a business landscape characterized by interdependencies, any innovation attempt will be faced with complex interfaces also within and among all these settings. The purpose of this paper is to shed light over this issue through the investigation of the interface between policy and a specific innovation journey. The attention is directed to the creation and distribution of social-material values; and the translation of these values into a monetary dimension.

Design/methodology/approach

To fulfill this aim the authors utilize an empirical study on the commercialization of university research results in the field of solar power technology, based on the ARA model as a conceptual and methodological foundation, with a focus on the establishment of resource combinations, activity links and actor bonds in the involved developing, producing and using settings. In order to pin-point the creation of social-material values and the establishment of a monetary dimension the authors used a model adapted from Håkansson and Olsen (2015).

Findings

From a national policy perspective, the transnational nature of innovation processes and the connectedness of resources across different, often far-away places, entail a loss of control on the social-material and monetary benefits of innovation; even more so if the policy of one country stands against that of another country. Still, not only policy but also representatives for academic research and business seem to consider the transnational aspect as an exception.

Research limitations/implications

Due to that the embedding in the user setting did not occur as expected; with the Swedish focal firm as main interface, but from a Chinese firm that the authors did not have access to, the main focus is on the developing and the producing setting, while the embedding in the user setting is covered through indirect information.

Practical implications

The role that established production structures have for the embedding of innovations into producing and using settings seems to be neglected in policy circles – although these have a strong impact on the creation of social-material value and a monetary flow.

Social implications

See practical implication.

Originality/value

The paper underlines the impact of interfaces with established production structures for the creation of social-material value and monetary flow – and for transnational dimension of the innovation journey.

Details

IMP Journal, vol. 11 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2059-1403

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 26 July 2018

Jens Ola Eklinder-Frick, Andrea Perna and Alexandra Waluszewski

Previous IMP research has shown that innovation benefits tend to gravitate across organisational, company and legal borders. However, OECD and EU policy assume that…

Abstract

Purpose

Previous IMP research has shown that innovation benefits tend to gravitate across organisational, company and legal borders. However, OECD and EU policy assume that innovation investments will create benefits in close spatial relation to where these were made. The overall purpose of this paper is to consider how opportunities and obstacles of innovation appear from the perspective of: a national policy actor, its regional mediators and a policy supported and research-based firm engaged in innovation. A specific interest is directed to what interactive aspects that are considered by these actors; in the using, producing and developing settings.

Design/methodology/approach

Influenced by the research question and theoretical point of departure the authors investigate what type of interfaces our focal actors recognise in the using, producing and developing settings. A total of 41 face-to-face and phone interviews focusing on each actor’s approach were conducted; 23 interviews in order to investigate the “policy side” of innovation attempts, while 18 interviews have been performed in order to understand a single business actor’s innovation approach.

Findings

The study shows that both the national policy agency and the regional policy mediators primarily operate within a developing setting, and furthermore, applies a rather peculiar interpretation of proximity. As long as the developing setting of the innovation journey is in focus, with the task to transfer academic knowledge advances to commercial actors, the proximity aspect is rather easy to fulfil. However, as soon as the producing and using settings of the innovation is taken into consideration, the innovation, if it survives, will gravitate to a producing setting where it can contribute to investments in place.

Originality/value

The study investigates the opportunities and obstacles of innovation; the spatial aspects included, and how these are considered by: a national policy agency, a regional mediator and a policy-supported innovating firm, in order to juxtapose the policy doctrine with the experience of the business actors such policy wishes to support.

Details

IMP Journal, vol. 12 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2059-1403

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 29 October 2018

Enrico Baraldi, Francesco Ciabuschi, Olof Lindahl, Andrea Perna and Gian Luca Gregori

The purpose of this paper is to explore two specific areas pertaining to industrial networks and international business (IB). First, the authors look at how business…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore two specific areas pertaining to industrial networks and international business (IB). First, the authors look at how business relationships influence the internationalization in time, from the establishment of the first subsidiary in a foreign market to the following ones, and in space, that is, across different markets. Second, the authors investigate how an increasing external network dependence of subsidiaries in their internationalization may cause a detachment of a subsidiary from the mother company as its knowledge becomes insufficient to guide a subsidiary’s internationalization.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper utilizes an exploratory, longitudinal, single-case study of Loccioni – a manufacturer of measuring and automatic control systems for industrial customers – to illustrate the specific dynamics of the influences of industrial networks on the internationalization of subsidiaries.

Findings

The case study helps to elucidate the roles, entailing also free will and own initiative, of small suppliers’ subsidiaries which operate inside several global factories, and how “surfing” on many different global factories, by means of several local subsidiaries, actually supports these suppliers’ own international developments. This notion adds to our understanding of the global factory phenomenon a supplier focus that stresses how the role of suppliers is not merely that of being passive recipients of activities and directions from a focal orchestrating firm, but can also be that of initiative-takers themselves.

Originality/value

The paper contributes to the IMP tradition by providing a multi-layered and geographically more fine-grained view of the network embedding companies that operate on internationalized markets. This paper thereby sheds light on a less investigated area of research within the IMP tradition: the link between internationalization in different countries and the interconnectedness between the industrial networks spanning these countries. At the same time, this paper contributes to IB theories by showing how a late-internationalizing SME can enter highly international markets by “plugging into” several established “Global Factories” as a way to exploit further opportunities for international expansion.

Details

IMP Journal, vol. 12 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2059-1403

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 28 July 2021

Jens Laage-Hellman, Frida Lind and Andrea Perna

This paper aims to explore the role and meaning of openness for the purpose of enhancing the understanding of collaborative innovation from an industrial network perspective.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to explore the role and meaning of openness for the purpose of enhancing the understanding of collaborative innovation from an industrial network perspective.

Design/methodology/approach

The theoretical framework is based on the Industrial Network Approach, and the concepts of activity links, resource ties and actor bonds are used as a starting point for capturing the content and dynamics of the interaction. The empirical part consists of five case studies: two historical and three contemporary cases dealing with collaborative innovation projects. The cases are analyzed with regard to openness in business relationships and their connections in the network.

Findings

The main contribution is a conceptualization of openness in business relationships and relationship connections. The paper describes various forms and contents of openness – and closeness. It is postulated that the concept of openness can be used as an analytical tool for digging deeper into relationship and network-related issues of relevance to firms’ behavior in the context of collaborative innovation. Openness, as it is defined in this paper, is also put forward as an explanation of why (or why not) collaborative innovation projects become successful.

Originality/value

The conceptualization of openness differs from openness as it is commonly described in the open innovation literature. There, openness is the opposite of closeness, that is, a pattern where the innovation activities take place internally within the company. In this paper, openness, instead, has to do with how firms interact with other network actors in the context of collaborative innovation.

Details

Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, vol. 36 no. 13
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0885-8624

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 19 October 2015

Roberta Bocconcelli, Simone Guercini and Håkan Håkansson

Abstract

Details

IMP Journal, vol. 9 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2059-1403

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Article
Publication date: 19 October 2015

Andrea Perna, Andrea Runfola, Simone Guercini and Gian Luca Gregori

The purpose of this paper is to propose evidence on the role of serendipity in business relationship. It concerns the understanding of the unplanned development of the…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to propose evidence on the role of serendipity in business relationship. It concerns the understanding of the unplanned development of the relationship and the opportunities that may arise from taking serendipity as a “shaping” factor of relationship beginning.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper recurs to a longitudinal case study in the mechanical industry. In particular the development of the relationship between an Italian manufacturing company as supplier and a Chinese large customer is presented.

Findings

The case study highlights the role played by serendipity in the beginning and development of the business relationship between an Italian manufacturing company and a Chinese customer.

Originality/value

The main theoretical contribution of the paper is to point out how serendipity may affect business relationship development.

Details

IMP Journal, vol. 9 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2059-1403

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 13 April 2015

Antonella La Rocca

Abstract

Details

IMP Journal, vol. 9 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2059-1403

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