Cooperations between established SMEs and start-ups

The study examines motives, forms, challenges and success factors of cooperations between start-ups and established Mittelstand firms. While start-ups are motivated by network access and industry-specific knowledge, established firms seek access to new technologies and to highly qualified specialists. The chosen cooperation design derives from the partners´ objectives and differs in terms of intensity and legal structure. To initiate a successful cooperation, established firms have to be open-minded and need to establish a risk- and innovation-friendly culture within their organization. Start-ups should already understand the specific needs of their potential partner in advance. Overall these cooperations offer great potential for both sides. Start-ups benefit from the short decision-making processes in owner-managed firms and established firms from higher competitiveness through the innovation impulses they receive from start-ups.

Löher, J.; Paschke, Max; Schröder, C. unter Mitarbeit von Kasdorf, A. (2017): Kooperationen zwischen etabliertem Mittelstand und Start-ups, IfM Bonn: IfM-Materialien Nr. 258, Bonn.

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