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Article
Publication date: 6 February 2017

Dominik Deradjat and Tim Minshall

The purpose of this paper is to increase the understanding of how companies can implement rapid manufacturing (RM) (i.e. the use of additive manufacturing (AM…

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to increase the understanding of how companies can implement rapid manufacturing (RM) (i.e. the use of additive manufacturing (AM) technologies for final part production) for mass customisation (MC), drawing upon the experiences of firms in the dental sector (one of the major users of AM technologies).

Design/methodology/approach

A framework for implementation of RM for MC was developed from the literature to guide the data gathering. Data from six case companies in the dental sector implementing RM for MC, supplemented with insights from their respective AM machine providers and software companies, were used to analyse how companies implement RM for MC and what considerations and challenges they face in the process.

Findings

The study shows how implementation of RM for MC entails different considerations depending on the stage of implementation and maturity of involved technologies. In total, 26 challenges have been identified that seem to play a crucial role in implementation. The paper suggests that RM can enable MC in manufacturing by achieving both a high number of units produced and as well as a high level of customisation of each product.

Originality/value

Based on the review of the literature, no case studies exist that investigate companies implementing RM for MC despite literature having suggested RM as an enabler for MC in manufacturing for many years.

Details

Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, vol. 28 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-038X

Keywords

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Book part
Publication date: 1 January 2008

Tim Minshall, Bill Wicksteed, Céline Druilhe, Andrea Kells, Michael Lynskey and Jelena Širaliova

In 2003, there was a concern among policymakers that spin-outs were being given undue prominence in consideration of the research commercialisation performance of UK…

Abstract

In 2003, there was a concern among policymakers that spin-outs were being given undue prominence in consideration of the research commercialisation performance of UK Higher Education Institutes (HEIs) (Lambert, 2003). The aim of this research was to investigate what issues lay behind the data reported on spin-out activity by UK HEIs in the period 1998–2002.

Details

New Technology-Based Firms in the New Millennium
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-0-0805-5448-8

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Book part
Publication date: 23 December 2010

Tim Minshall, Letizia Mortara and Johann Jakob Napp

Innovation is an increasingly distributed process, involving networks of geographically dispersed players with a variety of possible, and dynamic, value chain…

Abstract

Innovation is an increasingly distributed process, involving networks of geographically dispersed players with a variety of possible, and dynamic, value chain configurations (Fraser, Minshall, & Probert, 2005). ‘Open innovation’ is one term that has emerged to describe ‘[…] the use of purposive inflows and outflows of knowledge to accelerate internal innovation, and expand the markets for external use of innovation, respectively’ (Chesbrough, Vanhaverbeke, & West, 2006). This is contrasted with the ‘closed’ model of innovation where firms typically generate their own ideas which they then develop, produce, market, distribute and support.

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New Technology-Based Firms in the New Millennium
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-0-85724-374-4

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Article
Publication date: 14 March 2008

Tim Minshall, Letizia Mortara, Stelios Elia and David Probert

The purpose of this paper is to illustrate the development of the final outputs of a research project looking at partnerships between technology‐based start‐ups and large…

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1682

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to illustrate the development of the final outputs of a research project looking at partnerships between technology‐based start‐ups and large firms (“asymmetric” partnerships). It presents the stage of the research aimed at understanding how best to design outputs to assist firms in managing such partnerships.

Design/methodology/approach

A combination of company case studies, company workshops, an end‐user survey and pilot dissemination programme were used to identify an appropriate form for the packaging and delivery of the research findings (i.e. what problems can be encountered in such partnerships, and what approaches companies have implemented to overcome these problems).

Findings

A range of approaches for overcoming the problems of managing partnerships between firms whose age and size are markedly different were catalogued. The research presented in this paper revealed that companies felt best able to learn from the experiences of others through a combination of direct support, multi‐company workshops, and online access to selected materials.

Research limitations/implications

The generalisability of the findings may be limited by the fact that the majority of the organisations collaborating in this research either were located in the high‐technology business cluster in and around the city of Cambridge, UK or had formed partnerships with companies in this geographic region.

Practical implications

Partnerships between technology‐based start‐ups and technology‐intensive large firms can provide an effective means of accessing and integrating the complementary assets required to bring a novel technology to market. This research will help firms overcome the numerous challenges involved in setting up and managing such partnerships by providing stakeholders with easier access to academic research findings. It will assist researchers who are considering how to disseminate research outputs to industry.

Originality/value

There is a strong body of work on improving the performance of partnerships in general, but less on overcoming the practical challenges of managing partnerships between firms of markedly different age and scale. In addition, the selection of the optimum process for ensuring that the findings of such research are used to support implementation remains a topic of debate. This work helps to address both gaps.

Details

Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, vol. 19 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-038X

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Article
Publication date: 11 October 2011

Yuan Zhou, Guannan Xu, Jun Su and Tim Minshall

Literature shows that university spin‐offs (USOs) have idiosyncratic strengths in comparison to other new firms; however, evidence also shows that Chinese USOs have a low…

Abstract

Purpose

Literature shows that university spin‐offs (USOs) have idiosyncratic strengths in comparison to other new firms; however, evidence also shows that Chinese USOs have a low survival rate, and only a small percent of them can grow into sustainable businesses. The purpose of this paper is to conduct an empirical study to inquire about the variable growth barriers to Chinese USOs, in order to address two major research questions of this paper: what are the major growth barriers, and how significant they are; and what supports should university and government provide to eliminate those barriers?

Design/methodology/approach

In the first place, this paper attempts to explore the research questions through literature review and pilot interviews, based on which, a questionnaire for a survey was developed. Then, this study then attempts to address the research questions through a nation‐wide survey in 2009 across 69 national university science parks.

Findings

This paper finds that corporate governance issues, managerial concerns, and lack of infrastructure support are three major categories of barriers that thwart the growth of USOs in China. In addition, this paper also identified the support that is expected from universities and government agencies in order to cope with the barriers.

Originality/value

This paper contributes to theory in three ways. First, it tests and validates some existing conceptual frameworks concerned with the growth barriers to USOs. Second, it sheds light on the specific growth concerns of Chinese USOs and identifies three kinds of barriers. Further, this study provides evidence for future policy making regarding USOs and university technology transfer activities in China. This research will be of interest to policy makers, academic entrepreneurs, and university administrators.

Details

Journal of Science and Technology Policy in China, vol. 2 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1758-552X

Keywords

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Book part
Publication date: 23 December 2010

Caren Weinberg, Tim Minshall and Elizabeth Garnsey

The buyers' perspective of mergers and acquisitions (M&A) has been heavily researched, yet it has produced surprisingly few prescriptive findings. Given the limited amount…

Abstract

The buyers' perspective of mergers and acquisitions (M&A) has been heavily researched, yet it has produced surprisingly few prescriptive findings. Given the limited amount of prior research from the sellers' perspective, inductive methods appear to be the most appropriate to research this phenomenon (Eisenhardt, 1989; Yin, 2003; Miles & Huberman, 1994). Using the model outlined by Carlile and Christensen (2005), the overall goal of the project reported here is to build a theoretical framework based on empirical observations. This will eventually facilitate the examination of this phenomenon and enhance knowledge as well as theory building for further research.

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New Technology-Based Firms in the New Millennium
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-0-85724-374-4

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Book part
Publication date: 18 February 2013

Tianjiao Xia and Tim Minshall

A key element in the development of a technology, a company or an industry is the availability of finance. While much effort has been directed at understanding the roles…

Abstract

A key element in the development of a technology, a company or an industry is the availability of finance. While much effort has been directed at understanding the roles of venture capital, angel investment and public investment, there does not appear to be much analysis of the industry-level effects as a new industry is emerging. In this chapter, we investigate the patterns of public and private investments and the role of government in support of financing the emergence of science and technology industries. We also examine the criteria used by venture capitalists in their assessment of investment opportunities regarding new technology-based ventures. We focus on the analysis of investment at stage between prototyping and commercialisation of a new technology. This stage has been labelled as the ‘valley of death’ from an investor perspective, which reflects greater risks for investors due to the high level of both technology and market uncertainty.

Details

New Technology-Based Firms in the New Millennium
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78190-315-5

Keywords

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Book part
Publication date: 4 January 2012

Sirirat Sae Lim, Ken Platts and Tim Minshall

In the UK as more and more traditional manufacturing is being outsourced to lower-cost countries, the development of manufacturing start-up companies is increasingly…

Abstract

In the UK as more and more traditional manufacturing is being outsourced to lower-cost countries, the development of manufacturing start-up companies is increasingly perceived as important in sustaining a competitive UK manufacturing base. However, start-up companies are often associated with a high failure rate, particularly during the early stages of operation. As they have yet to build up the strength and resources to sustain them through internal and external crises, start-ups operate under conditions that constantly challenge their survival. Developing the most appropriate manufacturing strategy is probably more critical in start-up companies than in established organisations, yet little research has addressed this area.

This paper reports the findings of an exploratory study involving six UK manufacturing start-up companies. A novel manufacturing strategy content framework is proposed. The chapter also examines the business orientation (technology-push or market-pull) adopted by the case companies, and investigates how business orientations influenced their manufacturing strategies. This leads to two business orientation mobility models. This chapter concludes by discussing the use of the frameworks and suggesting how they might be put into practice to provide assistance to operational managers in start-up companies.

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New Technology-Based Firms in the New Millennium
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78052-118-3

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Article
Publication date: 29 May 2007

The purpose of this paper is to provide an overview of the recently published report entitled Funding Technology: Britain Forty Years On.

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430

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to provide an overview of the recently published report entitled Funding Technology: Britain Forty Years On.

Design/methodology/approach

The report forms the fourth in a series that has examined the funding of innovation and entrepreneurship in differing national contexts. The first three reports covered the USA, Israel and Germany.

Findings

The report found that the UK displays economic weaknesses in the exploitation of new ideas, and discusses factors that are hindering the UK's ability to capitalise on turning research outputs into successful products and services.

Orginality/value

The report is of value in warning that Britain must make the component parts of the knowledge economy work more effectively together.

Details

Strategic Direction, vol. 23 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0258-0543

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 1 January 2013

Sarah Lubik, Sirirat Lim, Ken Platts and Tim Minshall

As traditional manufacturing, previously vital to the UK economy, is increasingly outsourced to lower‐cost locations, policy makers seek leadership in emerging industries…

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6358

Abstract

Purpose

As traditional manufacturing, previously vital to the UK economy, is increasingly outsourced to lower‐cost locations, policy makers seek leadership in emerging industries by encouraging innovative start‐up firms to pursue competitive opportunities. Emerging industries can either be those where a technology exists but the corresponding downstream value chain is unclear, or a new technology may subvert the existing value chain to satisfy existing customer needs. Hence, this area shows evidence of both technology‐push and market‐pull forces. The purpose of this paper is to focus on market‐pull and technology‐push orientations in manufacturing ventures, specifically examining how and why this orientation shifts during the firm's formative years.

Design/methodology/approach

A multiple case study approach of 25 UK start‐ups in emerging industries is used to examine this seldom explored area. The authors offer two models of dynamic business‐orientation in start‐ups and explain the common reasons for shifts in orientation and why these two orientations do not generally co‐exist during early firm development.

Findings

Separate evolution paths were found for strategic orientation in manufacturing start‐ups and separate reasons for them to shift in their early development. Technology‐push start‐ups often changed to a market‐pull orientation because of new partners, new market information or shift in management priorities. In contrast, many of the start‐ups beginning with a market‐pull orientation shifted to a technology‐push orientation because early market experiences necessitated a focus on improving processes in order to increase productivity or meet partner specifications, or meet a demand for complementary products.

Originality/value

While a significant body of work exists regarding manufacturing strategy in established firms, little work has been found that investigates how manufacturing strategy emerges in start‐up companies, particularly those in emerging industries.

Details

Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, vol. 24 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-038X

Keywords

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