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This paper describes and analyses how creative organizations develop and use routines and processes to strengthen their creative capabilities. Using an exploratory framework based in resource-based theory and creativity literature, it focuses on the role of the creative entrepreneur as a key component for organizations developing creative capabilities. The creative entrepreneur or agent builds collaboration, exploits knowledge and enhances relationships in and out of an organization. Drawing on three in-depth case studies from different sectors (theatre, sports and software), the article expands the idea of creative capabilities to encompass routines and processes in organizations in industries generally not considered ‘creative’. Furthermore, it outlines how the creative entrepreneur is instrumental in developing and using the creative routines so that they form creative capabilities. Based on the analysis, the article discusses creative capabilities, collaboration in the process, and the creative entrepreneur’s role in developing and using them.