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Theory, Networks, History

Mark Casson

In this important new book, Mark Casson argues that the fundamental significance of entrepreneurship requires it be fully integrated into core social science disciplines such as economics and sociology, as well as into economic and business history. This book shows how this can be done. It formalises the role of the entrepreneur as innovator, risk-taker and judgemental decision-maker, and relates these functions to the size and growth of the firm. Mark Casson discusses entrepreneurship as a form of strategic networking, showing how entrepreneurs gain access to established networks in order to source information, and then create their own networks to exploit this information. Applying these insights to historical evidence leads to a radical re-interpretation of key issues in economic and business history, including the emergence of trading companies, the spread of empires, the rise of the modern corporation and the globalisation of the firm.
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Chapter 10: Entrepreneurship and the Development of Global Brands with Teresa da Silva Lopes

Andrew Godley


This chapter explains how entrepreneurs have contributed to the development of successful global brands in consumer goods industries in the twentieth century. It also explains why so few independent brands survived the merger waves of the 1980s. The industries analysed are ones in which the success of products is determined mainly by advertising rather than by the technology embodied in the product. Drawing on cross-industry and cross-country comparisons of branded consumer goods, the chapter highlights the entrepreneurial and innovative strategies pursued in developing brands. It shows that successful brands usually outlive the firms that create them. Successful local brands are transformed into national and even global brands through a process of continuous development and rejuvenation. It is not only the origination of a brand that is entrepreneurial, but rejuvenation too. Whilst origination is often effected by entrepreneurs who own small family businesses, rejuvenation is usually undertaken by internal entrepreneurs working for large multi-brand firms, who are assisted by marketing professionals. Small-firm entrepreneurs and large-firm entrepreneurs therefore combine to exploit the potential of successful brands by drawing on different types of knowledge. At each stage in the life of the brand, the type of firm that possesses the most relevant knowledge becomes the owner of the brand. 10.1 INTRODUCTION Studies of entrepreneurship in business history tend to focus on a single entrepreneur, usually the founder and owner-manager of a firm, and creator of a single successful product and brand with distinctive characteristics. This study follows the example of earlier chapters by...

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