IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this article

Habitual Entrepreneurs

Listed author(s):
  • Ucbasaran, Deniz
  • Alsos, Gry Agnete
  • Westhead, Paul
  • Wright, Mike

This review explores the emerging debate relating to habitual entrepreneurs. Habitual entrepreneurs (also known as experienced or, latterly, repeat entrepreneurs) are a widespread phenomenon. An entrepreneur's business ownership experience may differ according to the number of private businesses s/he has established, inherited and/or purchased. The nature of an entrepreneur's business ownership experience may not be homogeneous. Some habitual entrepreneurs may exit one private business before owning a subsequent one (i.e., serial entrepreneurs), while others may start/purchase and retain ownership of several private businesses concurrently (i.e., portfolio entrepreneurs). This review compares the profiles, behavior, and contributions of habitual entrepreneurs (i.e., serial and portfolio entrepreneurs) and novice entrepreneurs (i.e., entrepreneurs with no prior business ownership experience). The theoretical and policy cases for distinguishing between different types of entrepreneur are made. Differences between types of entrepreneur are examined in terms of their human capital profiles (e.g., education, motivations, and skills). Behavioral differences are examined with regard to the acquisition of resources, opportunity identification, pursuit and mode of exploitation, and organizational strategies. Finally, entrepreneur and firm performance differences between the different types are reviewed. Policy and practitioner implications are raised and assuming an interventionist stance, the case for targeted assistance toward habitual, serial, and portfolio and novice entrepreneurs is discussed. Avenues for additional research attention are highlighted relating to the following themes: the nature of opportunities; information search; leveraging human capital; entrepreneurial teams; measures of habitual entrepreneurship; the role of the external environment; contexts for habitual entrepreneurship; and methods and data issues.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
Download Restriction: no

Article provided by now publishers in its journal Foundations and Trends(R) in Entrepreneurship.

Volume (Year): 4 (2008)
Issue (Month): 4 (March)
Pages: 309-450

in new window

Handle: RePEc:now:fntent:0300000014
Contact details of provider: Web page:

No references listed on IDEAS
You can help add them by filling out this form.

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:now:fntent:0300000014. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Alet Heezemans)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.