Abstract

Over the past decade, the concept of co-opetition, or simultaneous competition and cooperation between firms, has increasingly received scholarly attention. We address three important gaps in the literature on co-opetition in this study. First, current understanding of co-opetition is restricted to the innovation context. We examine co-opetition across all business processes, from raw material to sale of the finished product. Second, prior studies assume mutually-beneficial transactions between firms (Bengtsson & Kock, 2000). This has resulted in a lack of insight into collaborative actions where one firm benefits disproportionately over another. Third, research has explored co-opetition as a single, collaborative event, whereas we examine co-opetition as a set of on-going actions and interactions. Therefore, this study looks beyond innovation and mutually- beneficial contexts to examine what drives entrepreneurs’ decisions to engage in co-opetition?

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