Strategic Renewal: Implications on Competitive Advantage : A case study of an innovative SME in a growing industry

University essay from Högskolan i Jönköping/IHH, Företagsekonomi; Högskolan i Jönköping/IHH, Företagsekonomi; Högskolan i Jönköping/IHH, Företagsekonomi

Abstract:

Purpose: The purpose of this thesis is to explore the process of strategic renewal implementation within an innovative SME operating in a growing industry, and the implications on its competitive advantage. In addition, the study seeks to identify the main causes of strategic renewal within this context.  Problem: Strategic researches have investigated to some point the process of strategic renewal, which has been widely recognized as critical for the sustained success of organizations. Even though there have been studies investigating strategic renewal and the need for it in today's competitive business environment, these publications have not dealt with the case of an innovative SME operating in a rapidly growing industry. Therefore, the authors of this thesis have identified a gap in the literature on the process of strategic renewal in that specific context. This created the incentive to explore how an innovative SME can drive and generate sustained competitive advantage to ensure its survival and further expansion in a competitive business environment.  Method: In order to fulfil the purpose of this qualitative research, an abductive approach that was based on a single case study was undertaken. This was an instrumental case study, thus the primary data was gathered through semi-structured interviews with representatives of the management of Infobric AB, where the phonomena of strategic renewal and sustained competitive advantage were explored.  Analysis: This research contributes to the academic field of strategy as it proposes a strategic renewal framework for innovative SMEs operating in rapidly growing industries. It aims to illustrate the necessity of this process to managers for sustaining or increasing their industry competitiveness. The authors suggest that the forces causing the urge for renewal process in an SME's strategy are both external and internal. It is also proposed that a strategic renewal implementation process occurs according to the following framework: recognition of threat/opportunity; evaluation; plan of action; implementation of renewal through new market entry; new product development; and new management system.  Conclusion: The conclusion of this research is that an innovative SME operating in a rapidly growing industry can gain sustained competitive advantage through strategic renewal implementation. The studied company Infobric AB is characterized as an innovative SME that is a market leader, flexible in their strategy, and responsive to environmental changes. Thus, the suggested strategic renewal framework is aimed to assist managers of companies that are characterized in the same manner and operate in fast developing and competitive business environments.

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