Tennant Company: Innovating Within and Beyond the Core
Lynda M. Applegate
Harvard University - Entrepreneurial Management Unit
University of California, Berkeley - Haas School of Business; Harvard University - Entrepreneurial Management Unit
affiliation not provided to SSRN
August 19, 2011
Harvard Business School Entrepreneurial Management Case No. 810-139
Tennant, a leading producer of floor cleaning equipment, must determine the business model to use for its new chemical free cleaning technology. In 2005, Tennant Company had developed an innovative, environmentally friendly, cleaning technology that could potentially revolutionize cleaning. Historically, Tennant was a producer of floor and carpet washing machines for industrial and commercial markets. Over time, it became clear that the technology had applications far beyond Tennant's core markets. In mid-2009, the company set up a new venture to develop the technology's promise. In 2010 this venture was wholly owned by Tennant and run by a Tennant manager. The case examines the decisions the CEO and new venture head must make to best structure and position the venture to succeed.
The case enables exploration of how to launch a new venture in an established organization. It enables discussion of the choices among competing business models and the alignment of strategy and organizational capabilities to create value.
working papers series
Date posted: February 11, 2012
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