Temporary business model innovation – SMEs’ innovation response to the Covid-19 crisis

Thomas Clauss*, Matthias Breier, Sascha Kraus, Susanne Durst, Raj V. Mahto

*Corresponding author for this work

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Abstract

The Covid-19 crisis has hit SMEs particularly hard. Numerous business models (BM) have been limited or rendered downright impossible due to decreased social contact. SMEs can respond to this exogenous crisis via temporary business model innovation (BMI). This empirical study investigates these temporary BMs using a multiple case study approach based on five SMEs in Austria, Germany, and Liechtenstein who within a short period of time applied their core competencies and networks to integrate new BMs, which were in some cases very different from existing ones. These had a positive effect on strategic flexibility, and if desired can also be incorporated into the firm long-term. The paper contributes to SME crisis management during the Covid-19 pandemic by pointing out and developing a successful management mechanism that allows to survive a crisis or even improve during this time. Moreover, we contribute to BMI literature by explaining temporary BMI as a new form of BMI. It also makes clear to managers that temporary BMs add value to firms and create new revenue streams.

Original languageEnglish
JournalR and D Management
Number of pages19
ISSN0033-6807
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 26. Aug 2021

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