Adaptation in new technology-based ventures: Insights at the company level



Recent research shows that, owing to the presence of uncertainty and ambiguity, new ventures have great difficulties in defining a viable business model from the outset and that minor or major adaptations to this initial business model are needed as the venture evolves. Technology-based companies are confronted with particularly high degrees of uncertainty and ambiguity. This paper therefore focuses on new technology-based ventures as a special case worth investigating. Most of the entrepreneurship literature studies adaptation at the individual level. However, many new technology-based firms are founded by a team of entrepreneurs. This paper therefore looks at how existing literature at the company level can inform us about adaptation in new technology-based companies. It starts by relating the concept of adaptation in new technology-based ventures to the existing literature on organizational adaptation at the firm level. Based on an overview of existing literature at the firm level, a propositional model is then put forward, describing (1) the process of adaptation and (2) the factors enabling adaptation in new technology-based ventures.