Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

New approach needed for high-tech entrepreneurs to build fast-growing businesses

10.11.2008
Though high-tech entrepreneurs and other knowledge-based businesses are often successful, they rarely develop into large enterprises.

This has little to do with ambition, according to Prof. Aard Groen. He proposes adopting a radical new approach to fresh business start-ups which will involve working in teams in the very early stages of the development process and forming a network of investors. Groen will be presenting this ‘entrepreneurial pressure cooker’, otherwise known as VentureLab Twente, in his inaugural speech as Professor of Innovative Entrepreneurship at the University of Twente.

The vast majority of the 700 or so spin-off enterprises created by the University of Twente over the last 25 years are still going strong. The survival rate is high, 80 percent are still operating five years after their conception, but the average size of these companies remains between 10 and 15 employees. This is often considered disappointing in policy terms given the level of high-quality knowledge invested in the companies. In his speech, Groen suggests that the majority of entrepreneurs, however, do not consider this a problem. These entrepreneurs have discovered where their strengths lie, have developed market status, and have now secured a stable position. "There’s absolutely nothing wrong with that," argues Groen. "In the early stages, they often focused on an innovative product but have gradually become more and more service-oriented. This has nothing to do with a lack of ambition but more to with the fact that growth is not their primary objective."

VentureLab

Groen wishes to put into perspective the concerns expressed by the Scientific Council for Government Policy in its memo on ‘Renewed Innovation’. The Council’s memo draws attention to the varying levels of ambition reflected in the entrepreneurial climate in the Netherlands. Groen is particularly interested in examining which processes lead to growth stagnation while exploring the opportunities for allowing enterprises to grow, based on a greater understanding of the entrepreneurial process. This is in line with plans such as those initiated by Innovation Platform. Under a project spearheaded by Hans de Boer, former chairman of MKB Nederland (organization for small and medium sized Dutch businesses), Innovation Platform wants to develop 100 ‘non-growers’ into fast growing companies. The VentureLab Twente plan, which Groen outlined during his speech, can play an important role in this project. Groen wants to influence the development of a knowledge-based company at the earliest possible stage. He hopes to achieve this by forming dozens of entrepreneurial teams from a large group of budding entrepreneurs, who, with the support of knowledge, market and finance networks, will be able to develop their business concept. They will be assisted by a team of international experts, participants, trainers and coaches. The launch date for VentureLab Twente is February 2009.

Aard Groen is Professor of Innovative Entrepreneurship and scientific director of Nikos, the Dutch Institute for Knowledge Intensive Entrepreneurship, at the University of Twente. Groen demonstrated in his inaugural speech that the combination of research, education and business development support in the Centre for Entrepreneurship produces both interesting scientific achievements as well as yielding great benefits for society. Nikos is a highly international professional academic team of around 30 scientists working on new methods and techniques to develop and support entrepreneurship. The University of Twente boasts a number of examples of active entrepreneurial support, including the Temporary Entrepreneurial Positions (TOP) programme coordinated by Nikos, which has been running for 25 years.

Education

Since the establishment of Nikos in 2001, the entrepreneurship programme run by Groen at the University of Twente has experienced rapid expansion. In addition to the two Entrepreneurship minor courses already available, various Bachelor’s and Master’s programmes are now offering entrepreneurship and business development components. These options are being offered by technical programmes such as advanced technology, industrial design and the Master’s in nanotechnology as well as business administration.

Wiebe van der Veen | alfa
Further information:
http://www.utwente.nl/nikos

More articles from Business and Finance:

nachricht Mathematical confirmation: Rewiring financial networks reduces systemic risk
22.06.2017 | International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA)

nachricht Frugal Innovations: when less is more
19.04.2017 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Arbeitswirtschaft und Organisation IAO

All articles from Business and Finance >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Tiny lasers from a gallery of whispers

New technique promises tunable laser devices

Whispering gallery mode (WGM) resonators are used to make tiny micro-lasers, sensors, switches, routers and other devices. These tiny structures rely on a...

Im Focus: Ultrafast snapshots of relaxing electrons in solids

Using ultrafast flashes of laser and x-ray radiation, scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (Garching, Germany) took snapshots of the briefest electron motion inside a solid material to date. The electron motion lasted only 750 billionths of the billionth of a second before it fainted, setting a new record of human capability to capture ultrafast processes inside solids!

When x-rays shine onto solid materials or large molecules, an electron is pushed away from its original place near the nucleus of the atom, leaving a hole...

Im Focus: Quantum Sensors Decipher Magnetic Ordering in a New Semiconducting Material

For the first time, physicists have successfully imaged spiral magnetic ordering in a multiferroic material. These materials are considered highly promising candidates for future data storage media. The researchers were able to prove their findings using unique quantum sensors that were developed at Basel University and that can analyze electromagnetic fields on the nanometer scale. The results – obtained by scientists from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics, the Swiss Nanoscience Institute, the University of Montpellier and several laboratories from University Paris-Saclay – were recently published in the journal Nature.

Multiferroics are materials that simultaneously react to electric and magnetic fields. These two properties are rarely found together, and their combined...

Im Focus: Fast, convenient & standardized: New lab innovation for automated tissue engineering & drug

MBM ScienceBridge GmbH successfully negotiated a license agreement between University Medical Center Göttingen (UMG) and the biotech company Tissue Systems Holding GmbH about commercial use of a multi-well tissue plate for automated and reliable tissue engineering & drug testing.

MBM ScienceBridge GmbH successfully negotiated a license agreement between University Medical Center Göttingen (UMG) and the biotech company Tissue Systems...

Im Focus: Silencing bacteria

HZI researchers pave the way for new agents that render hospital pathogens mute

Pathogenic bacteria are becoming resistant to common antibiotics to an ever increasing degree. One of the most difficult germs is Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

“Lasers in Composites Symposium” in Aachen – from Science to Application

19.09.2017 | Event News

I-ESA 2018 – Call for Papers

12.09.2017 | Event News

EMBO at Basel Life, a new conference on current and emerging life science research

06.09.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Molecular Force Sensors

20.09.2017 | Life Sciences

Producing electricity during flight

20.09.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Tiny lasers from a gallery of whispers

20.09.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>