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Business model configuration and dynamics for technology commercialization in mature markets
Serena Flammini, 1 Gabriella Arcese 2 , Letizia Mortara, 1 Maria Claudia Lucchetti
1  Centre for Technology Management, Institute for Manufacturing, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK
2  Ionian Department of Law, Economics and Environment, University of Bari Aldo Moro, Bari, Italy

Published: 06 November 2017 by Emerald in British Food Journal
Emerald, Volume 119; 10.1108/BFJ-03-2017-0125
Abstract: PurposeThe food industry is a well-established and complex industry. New entrants attempting to penetrate it via the commercialization of a new technological innovation could face high uncertainty and constraints. The capability to innovate through collaboration and to identify suitable strategies and innovative business models (BMs) can be particularly important for bringing a technological innovation to this market. However, although the potential for these capabilities has been advocated, we still lack a complete understanding of how new ventures could support the technology commercialization process via the development of BMs. The paper aims to discuss these issues.Design/methodology/approachTo address this gap, this paper builds a conceptual framework that knits together the different bodies of extant literature (i.e. entrepreneurship, strategy and innovation) to analyze the BM innovation processes associated with the exploitation of emerging technologies; determines the suitability of the framework using data from the exploratory case study of IT IS 3D – a firm which has started to exploit 3D printing in the food industry; and improves the initial conceptual framework with the findings that emerged in the case study.FindingsFrom this analysis it emerged that: companies could use more than one BM at a time; hence, BM innovation processes could co-exist and be run in parallel; the facing of high uncertainty might lead firms to choose a closed and/or a familiar BM, while explorative strategies could be pursued with open BMs; significant changes in strategies during the technology commercialization process are not necessarily reflected in a radical change in the BM; and firms could deliberately adopt interim strategies and BMs as means to identify the more suitable ones to reach the market.Originality/valueThis case study illustrates how firms could innovate the processes of their BM development to face the uncertainties linked with the entry into a mature and highly conservative industry (food).
Keywords: 3D printing, Emerging Technologies, Business model innovation, Established Industries, Open Business Model, Technology commercialization
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