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FOUNDER BACKGROUNDS AND
IMPLICATIONS FOR CORE COMPETENCE
STRATEGY APPLICATION TO NEW VENTURES
Steven T. Walsh, New Jersey Institute of Technology
Bruce A. Kirchhoff, New Jersey Institute of Technology
Robert L. Boylan, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
Data and Analysis
The "core competence" view in business strategy has received wide spread attention among academicians and practitioners in recent years. While the importance of this view has been widely embraced, relatively little effort has been made for its incorporation into the entrepreneurial strategy literature. In this paper, founder experience prior to business formation is used to define core competence for the census of entrepreneurial firms in the semiconductor silicon industry. Previous studies have shown that founder experience is correlated to success in subsequent ventures, but little entrepreneurial research provides empirical evidence to integrate founder experience typologies with core competence. Results reported here provide early evidence that few of the entrepreneurial ventures survived in this scale dominated production environment. Most of the entrepreneurial firms that survived had founders with a strong technological background in production capabilities necessary for silicon manufacturing. This suggests that core competence is an important ingredient to entrepreneurial survival.
© 1997 Babson College All Rights Reserved
Last Updated 4/27/97 by Germaine Wong
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