Title: Entrepreneurship in emerging high-tech industries: ICT entrepreneurs between experts and kamikazes

Authors: Frank Robert, Pierre Marques, Frank Lasch, Frederic Le Roy

Addresses: GSCM-Montpellier Business School, 2300, Avenue des Moulins, 34185 Montpellier Cedex 4, France. ' GSCM-Montpellier Business School, 2300, Avenue des Moulins, 34185 Montpellier Cedex 4, France. ' GSCM-Montpellier Business School, 2300, Avenue des Moulins, 34185 Montpellier Cedex 4, France. ' University of Montpellier, Espace Richter, Bat. E, Rue Vendemiaire – CS 19519, 34960 Montpellier Cedex 2, France; GSCM-Montpellier Business School, 2300, Avenue des Moulins, 34185 Montpellier Cedex 4, France

Abstract: This study addresses a paradox: stakeholders agree upon the strategic importance of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) entrepreneurship, but little research provides empirical results to understand the ICT sector/entrepreneur. Analysing 469 entrepreneurs, the following specificities of ICT entrepreneurship in France were revealed: subsector differences, regional disparities, underrepresentation of female entrepreneurs, high qualification as prerequirement, insufficient preparation activities, a low level of entrepreneurship training and a surprisingly high proportion of necessity entrepreneurship. At the subsector level, four groups of entrepreneurs were identified: experienced cadre, |freshman|, well-prepared |provident| and |kamikaze|. The |expert| with industry experience contrasts with the inexperienced |freshman|. The careful preparer (|provident|) displays a more technical profile, little management experience but the highest level of preparation of all four types. The opposite is the kamikaze: lack of specific knowledge, low educational level and little preparation. Implications for stakeholders (entrepreneurship support, venture capital) are suggested to assess and adjust measures for each type of entrepreneur.

Keywords: high tech industries; information technology; communication technology; ICT; entrepreneurship; entrepreneurial types; entrepreneurs; typology; France; entrepreneurship support; venture capital; high technology.

DOI: 10.1504/IJESB.2009.023020

International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Small Business, 2009 Vol.7 No.3, pp.258 - 283

Published online: 08 Feb 2009 *

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