Network and firm antecedents of spin-offs: Motherhooding spin-offs
Manuel Portugal Ferreira
Ana Teresa Tavares
We advance firm and network conditions that are favorable for the gestation of new spin-offs by entrepreneurial employees that exit the mother firm to constitute their own companies. This type of entrepreneurial activity has some unique characteristics. We suggest that spin-offs from certain parent firms have fundamental network benefits that increase their likelihood of survival and success. These benefits accrue on the form of social resources and a unique embeddedness in networks of other offspring and mother firms, and do not require the spin-offs to engage in any direct exchanges with the parent firm. The process which we call 'motherhood' highlights the potential for a mother-progeny and child-child model that promotes entrepreneurial action through spin-offs, and allow us to understand the conditions under which interorganizational networks of firms emerge and thrive as an entrepreneurial process. We conclude that considering a motherhood process, with the characteristics defined in this paper, contributes to the study of entrepreneurship and network evolution.
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