Title: Coopetition strategies of start-ups: evidence from a Spanish regional innovation system

Authors: Jasmina Berbegal-Mirabent; Dolors Gil-Doménech; Carolina Senent-Bailach

Addresses: Department of Economics and Business Organisation, Universitat Internacional de Catalunya, 08017 Barcelona, Spain ' Department of Economics and Business Organisation, Universitat Internacional de Catalunya, 08017 Barcelona, Spain ' IUDESCOOP, University of Valencia, Valencia 46022, Spain

Abstract: Start-ups operate in a highly competitive environment. In this context, collaboration between competitors has been found to help companies reduce risk and share costs, resources and expertise. Despite its relevance, coopetition (i.e., the simultaneous pursuit of cooperation and competition) in entrepreneurship has attracted little scholarly attention. This study aims at filling this theoretical and empirical gap by exploring the impact of coopetition on the performance of start-ups. Drawing on the existing literature, this study also considers innovation and knowledge sharing as key factors shaping business performance. The analysis is based on Qualitative Comparative Analysis (QCA) because the focus is on the combined effect of the determinants of firm performance rather than their net effects. This approach enables us to identify different start-up strategies. The results indicate that coopetition and innovation are key factors. However, knowledge sharing is only relevant when coopeting start-ups either have solid market experience or are highly innovative.

Keywords: coopetition; innovation; knowledge sharing; performance; start-ups.

DOI: 10.1504/EJIM.2021.118571

European Journal of International Management, 2021 Vol.16 No.4, pp.694 - 711

Received: 05 Jun 2019
Accepted: 01 Nov 2019

Published online: 25 Sep 2021 *

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