Title: A value creation view of opportunity recognition processes

Authors: Gerald E. Hills, David J. Hansen, Claes M. Hultman

Addresses: Chair, Institute for Entrepreneurial Studies, University of Illinois at Chicago (MC 244), 601 S Morgan Street, Chicago, IL 60607, USA. ' University of Illinois at Chicago (MC 244), 601 S. Morgan Street, Chicago, IL 60607, USA. ' Faculty of Business, Orebro University, SE-701 82 Orebro, Sweden

Abstract: Opportunity recognition is an important part of value creation processes and vice-versa. A qualitative study, involving in-depth, semi-structured interviews of 59 firm-owners/founders in the USA and Sweden was conducted to better understand how entrepreneurs and SME owners engage in opportunity recognition and marketing practices. The findings revealed evidence of: planning to be opportunistic, a propensity to take action, opportunities perceived incrementally over years, instantaneous opportunity evaluation, first customer testing rather than formal market research, both Kirznerian alertness and Schumpeterian new combinations, job dissatisfaction and industry experience preceding opportunity recognition, support for the Bhave model, variations in the level of search, entrepreneurs taking ||ownership|| of ideas that were not originally theirs, use of supply and demand in recognising opportunities and contingent opportunity recognition.

Keywords: opportunity recognition; value creation; qualitative; business ideas; SMEs; Kirznerian alertness; Schumpeterian new combinations; USA; Sweden; entrepreneurs; entrepreneurship; marketing practices.

DOI: 10.1504/IJESB.2005.007089

International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Small Business, 2005 Vol.2 No.4, pp.404 - 417

Published online: 24 May 2005 *

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