University of Twente Student Theses


The perception, organization and results of Business Development in SMEs

Walsweer, J.P. (2016) The perception, organization and results of Business Development in SMEs.

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Abstract:Although the term ‘Business Development’ (BD) is well known among young and mature enterprises, there is no general consensus on its exact meaning and the concept has until now received limited attention in the managerial and academic literature. At the same time BD is seen as crucial for the development and execution of the company’s strategy and as an important contributing factor to growth processes. Without a common understanding of what the concept means it is difficult to assess what effective BD is and which of its activities contribute to the growth of a firm and increase its profitability. The limited number of studies towards the meaning of BD have primarily focused on large companies in the biotechnology industry or SMEs in the IT. Existing research has proposed several definitions of BD, described the BD process and even developed some best practices on how to structure BD. There is a lack of research however towards BD in SMEs from different industries. This research aims to contribute to the literature in the following ways: 1) by assessing current scientific literature on BD to identify current academic perspectives; 2) by interviewing SMEs on how they perceive and organize BD and what the results of their efforts are; and 3) by comparing the literature to the results from the interview and develop propositions abour relations between BD variables. Combined, these three contributions answer the main research question: What is Business Development in SMEs?
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:85 business administration, organizational science
Programme:Business Administration MSc (60644)
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