Title: Managing corporate-startup relationships: what matters for entrepreneurs?

Authors: Franz Simon; Rainer Harms; Holger Schiele

Addresses: Department Technology Management and Supply, Faculty of Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences, University of Twente, P.O. Box 217, 7500 AE Enschede, Netherlands ' Dutch Institute for Knowledge Intensive Entrepreneurship (NIKOS), Faculty of Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences, University of Twente, P.O. Box 217, 7500 AE Enschede, Netherlands ' Department Technology Management and Supply, Faculty of Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences, University of Twente, P.O. Box 217, 7500 AE Enschede, Netherlands

Abstract: Startups have become an important part of corporations' external technology sourcing portfolio. Nonetheless, startups may be reluctant to enter in a relationship with a corporation. Prior research on corporate-startup relationships has primarily focused on the benefits for corporations and neglected the perspective of startups. In a multiple case study, we analyse the collaborations of 12 startups to 30 different corporations to address this gap. The findings show that complementary assets, risks as well as relational characteristics, influence the willingness of startups to enter such collaborations. We deduct nine propositions concerning, e.g., reputation and market access, misappropriation and the commitment of corporations. Further, our analysis highlights differences and similarities according to the maturity of startups. The study contributes to external technology sourcing literature and allows corporate managers to better understand the perspective of entrepreneurs in terms of engaging in strategic partnerships.

Keywords: external technology sourcing; corporate entrepreneurship; startups; corporations; corporate-startup relationships; asymmetric partnerships.

DOI: 10.1504/IJEV.2019.098770

International Journal of Entrepreneurial Venturing, 2019 Vol.11 No.2, pp.164 - 186

Available online: 15 Mar 2019 *

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