Entrepreneurial Origin, Technological Knowledge, and the Growth of Spin‐Off Companies

23 Pages Posted: 26 Jul 2011

See all articles by Bart Clarysse

Bart Clarysse

Vlerick Business School

Mike Wright

Nottingham University Business School

Els Van de Velde

Vlerick Business School

Date Written: September 2011

Abstract

We contribute to the literature on corporate spin‐offs and university spin‐offs by exploring how different characteristics in the technological knowledge base at start‐up influence spin‐off performance. We investigate how the technological knowledge characteristics endowed at start‐up predict growth, taking into account whether the knowledge/technology is transferred from a corporation or university. We use a novel, hand‐collected dataset involving 48 corporate and 73 university spin‐offs, comprising the population of spin‐offs in Flanders during 1991–2002. We find corporate spin‐offs grow most if they start with a specific narrow‐focused technology sufficiently distinct from the technical knowledge base of the parent company and which is tacit. University spin‐offs benefit from a broad technology which is transferred to the spin‐off. Novelty of the technical knowledge does not play a role in corporate spin‐offs, but has a negative impact in university spin‐offs unless universities have an experienced technology transfer office to support the spin‐off.

Suggested Citation

Clarysse, Bart and Wright, Mike and Van de Velde, Els, Entrepreneurial Origin, Technological Knowledge, and the Growth of Spin‐Off Companies (September 2011). Journal of Management Studies, Vol. 48, Issue 6, pp. 1420-1442, 2011. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1895188 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-6486.2010.00991.x

Bart Clarysse (Contact Author)

Vlerick Business School ( email )

Library
REEP 1
Gent, BE-9000
Belgium

Mike Wright

Nottingham University Business School ( email )

Jubilee Campus
Wollaton Road
Nottingham, NG8 1BB
United Kingdom
+44 115 951 5257 (Phone)
+44 115 951 5204 (Fax)

Els Van de Velde

Vlerick Business School ( email )

Library
REEP 1
Gent, BE-9000
Belgium

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