Corporate-startup collaboration: effects on large firms' business transformation
Artikel i vetenskaplig tidskrift, 2020
Purpose Corporations' emphasis on startup collaboration for corporate innovation has reached a new level in the context of digital transformation. The purpose of this paper is to examine three different models of corporate-startup collaboration and the models' effects on the case companies' capabilities for, and actual outcome in regards to their business transformations. Design/methodology/approach The theory and case studies on corporate-startup collaboration models are based on several years' empirical study on 30+ multi-national corporations in the Western world. Further, iterative literature reviews on digital and business transformation have been conducted, leading to the identification of two different, but complementing frameworks used to analyze each case's capabilities and outcome in regards to business transformation. Findings Collaboration with startups was found to positively affect the firms' business transformation. Further, the three-step analytical process is a valuable path to better understand, and improve, the cases' capability for, and outcome in regards to their business transformations. Research limitations/implications - The paper includes three case studies and a new process for analyzing their effects on capabilities for, and actual outcome in regards to business transformation. More research is needed, both on cases and on how to refine the analytical process. Practical implications - The practical contributions from this paper are the in-depth description of the three operational cases, as well as insights on how each model's set up (approach) can affect both capabilities for, but also level of business transformation. As a result, a company might need a portfolio of different startup collaboration initiatives in order to manage a more holistic transformation of their business. Originality/value The paper's main theoretical and practical contributions are further knowledge on organizations and organizational practices for corporate-startup collaboration, as well as a three-step process for analyzing each case's effect on the respective firm's capabilities for, and actual outcome in regards to business transformation.