Silicon Dragon's Business Model Innovation: An Explorativ Case Study

Denise Gaia & Jennifer Stefansson

Student thesis: Master thesis

Abstract

The purpose of this thesis is to explore how Business Model Innovation is conducted in China. In particular, to unveil how the Innovation Ecosystem influences the process of BMI. The empirical context of the study is represented by Baidu, Alibaba, Tencent, Xiaomi, known as China’s Silicon Dragons. Furthermore, the nature of this paper is exploratory and follows a pragmatism philosophy. The study was conducted using an abductive research approach. Moreover, a qualitative strategy was used to gather empirical data, which was done through a multiple case study of BATX. The findings reveal that BMI was driven by external factors such as: ‘flaws in existing market’, ‘growing market’, ‘market disruption’, ‘changes in consumer preferences’. Furthermore, the companies pursued mainly adaptive and evolutionary BMI through micro-innovations. Among the capabilities fundamental to conduct the BMI process were strong leadership, entrepreneurship and being quick to seize and shape opportunities. The Innovation Ecosystem influenced the BMI process in several ways such as: ‘Access to a new market’; ‘Support to Technological Innovation’; ‘Co-Creation’; ‘Access to knowledge and resources’ leading to ‘Accelerate BMI process’. Furthermore, it was found that that the IE is a driver, enabler and success factors of Business Model Innovation. The study is limited due to the qualitative research strategy and should therefore be confirmed by a quantitative study. A further limitation is represented by the small number of interviewees gathered. Future research is suggested such as: conduct a similar study on other emerging companies in China, in particular unicorns. Alternatively, explorative the relationship between BMI and IE in a new industry.

EducationsMSc in International Business, (Graduate Programme) Final ThesisMSc in Finance and Strategic Management, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
LanguageEnglish
Publication date2019
Number of pages122
SupervisorsSteffen Brenner