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High Tech Businesses in the UK: performance and niche markets

  • Thelma Quince
  • Hugh Whittaker
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    This paper presents the findings of a survey of 237 high tech small and medium sized businesses based in the UK. The survey is part of an ongoing comparative study of high tech small businesses in the UK and Japan. The paper describes the growth, innovative activity and market structure of businesses studied. Based on characteristics of the businesses and their CEOs five 'types' of high tech small business are identified. Differences between the types of business in respect of market structure, competitive advantages and limitations suggest fundamental differences in 'niche' markets. At one extreme are niche markets in which the technology is embodied in the person: the scientific or technical expert, at the other niche markets in which the technology is embodied in the product or service product. Implications for innovation, growth and policy associated with these differences are discussed.

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    Paper provided by ESRC Centre for Business Research in its series ESRC Centre for Business Research - Working Papers with number wp234.

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    Date of creation: Jun 2002
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    Handle: RePEc:cbr:cbrwps:wp234
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    1. Hugh Whittaker, 1999. "Entrepreneurs as Co-Operative Capitalists: High Tech CEOs in the UK," ESRC Centre for Business Research - Working Papers wp125, ESRC Centre for Business Research.
    2. Picot, Garnett & Baldwin, John R., 1994. "Employment Generation by Small Producers in the Canadian Manufacturing Sector," Analytical Studies Branch Research Paper Series 1994070e, Statistics Canada, Analytical Studies Branch.
    3. Evans, David S, 1987. "Tests of Alternative Theories of Firm Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 95(4), pages 657-74, August.
    4. Steven J. Davis & John C. Haltiwanger & Scott Schuh, 1998. "Job Creation and Destruction," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262540932, June.
    5. M Kitson & J Michie & M Quinn, 2001. "Markets, Competition, Cooperation and Innovation," ESRC Centre for Business Research - Working Papers wp212, ESRC Centre for Business Research.
    6. Carree, Martin & Klomp, Luuk, 1996. " Small Business and Job Creation: A Comment," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 8(4), pages 317-22, August.
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