Innovation Processes in Small and Medium Enterprises Associated in Networks from the Supermarket Sector
AbstractThis study evaluates the types of innovation that Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) associated in networks develop in order to enjoy competitive benefits offered by those networks. The present study developed qualitative multiple case study of two networks from the supermarket sector, one vertical network and one horizontal network, which operate in southern region of Minas Gerais, Brazil. The results allowed concluding that organizational changes companies had to implement in order to enjoy the benefits they had considered competitive, enabled with their participation in the networks, can be considered organizational innovations. Data analysis revealed that innovations implemented by companies, resulted in other types of innovation, such as other organizational service innovations. It should also be mentioned that the innovation processes showed differences in their form in the two networks studied. In the vertical network, innovation occurred from the top-down. In the horizontal network, innovation occurred from the bottom-up.
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