Title: European business venturing in times of digitisation - an analysis of for-profit business incubators in a triple helix context

Authors: Nico Kreusel; Natalie Roth; Alexander Brem

Addresses: VEND Consulting GmbH, Frommannstr. 17, 90419 Nürnberg, Germany ' Mücke Sturm & Company GmbH, Theresienhöhe 12, 80339 München, Germany ' Mads Clausen Institute, University of Southern Denmark, Alsion 2, 6400 Sonderborg, Denmark

Abstract: Business incubators have been developed as a key component of entrepreneurial activities in countries all over Europe. These incubators have a non-profit or a for-profit profile, with one-third located in Germany. The increased engagement of private business in what was a public-dominated incubation landscape may influence established theoretical frameworks. Within this context, this paper analyses 11 German business incubators to look at the most common types of for-profit business incubators in Germany and their main characteristics. Moreover, it introduces classification criteria for these incubators. Another aspect of the analysis is the effect of the triple helix dimensions of the different incubation types. The results show that two additional types of incubators can be identified in addition to the traditional public business incubator model, namely 'company builders' and 'accelerators'. Implications for research and practice, as well as directions for future research, are also discussed.

Keywords: business incubator; digitisation; for-profit incubators; FPIs; non-profit incubators; NPIs; business ventures; start-up; company builder; business model; university business collaboration; triple helix.

DOI: 10.1504/IJTM.2018.088707

International Journal of Technology Management, 2018 Vol.76 No.1/2, pp.104 - 136

Received: 07 Sep 2015
Accepted: 06 Oct 2016

Published online: 15 Dec 2017 *

Full-text access for editors Full-text access for subscribers Purchase this article Comment on this article