[Journal:] Journal of Global Entrepreneurship Research [ISSN:] 2251-7316 [Volume:] 5 [Year:] 2015 [Issue:] 16 [Pages:] 1-17
Purpose: New technology based firm (NTBF) survival and growth are connected with strategic partnering alliances and open innovation within technology clusters. Strategic partnerships in the biotechnology industry allow new technology based firms to gain a foothold in this high-cost, high-risk industry. In this article, we examine the impact of strategic partnerships and open innovation on the success of new biotechnology firms in Belgium by developing multiple case studies of firms in regional biotechnology clusters. A longitudinal follow up of the Belgian biotech startup ecosystem is presented. We find that, despite their small size and relative immaturity, new biotechnology firms are able to adopt innovative business models by providing R&D and services to larger firms and openly cooperating with them through open innovation. Design/methodology/approach: This is a theory-driven paper with suggested theoretical model and case study research design. Originality/value: Although the literature on strategic partnerships is well developed, the majority of studies focus on large, established firms. There is absence of studies that look at strategic partnerships - and specifically the role of open innovation - in the development of small and innovative biotechnology firms. This article addresses this gap in the literature with a focus on new firms in the biotechnology cluster in Belgium, where there is a growing trend towards technological and market-driven relationships between large and small biotechnology firms. Practical implications: Our conclusion is that the future of new biotechnology firms in Belgium lies in the effective establishment of strategic partnering alliances. In future research, the impacts of open innovation and novel business models warrant further attention.
New technology based firms New biotech firms Strategic alliances/partnerships Open innovation Regional system(s) of innovation