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Gazelles versus Mice: understanding their characteristics and the specifics of growth as a performance measure for research-based spin-offs
by Roland Helm; Oliver Mauroner; Kendra Pöhlmann
International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Innovation Management (IJEIM), Vol. 21, No. 4/5, 2017


Abstract: Commercialising knowledge and technologies from public research centres, research-based spin-offs (RBSOs) play a pivotal role for technology transfer and thus contribute to regional development, economic wealth and job creation. Growth, however, is a highly debated and controversial performance measure for small businesses. Analysing the special growth patterns of RBSOs, the existing literature has put forward two extreme forms, Gazelles and Mice, with metaphorical characteristics. Drawing on a database of 177 spin-offs from publicly funded non-university research institutes, we investigate the specifics of those firms with an above-average growth rate and contrast them to their stagnating counterparts, trying to characterise Gazelles and Mice and explain the growth patterns with more detail in order to identify the potential for high growth rates as early as possible.

Online publication date: Wed, 31-May-2017


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