Inderscience Publishers

The issue of asymmetrical growth in Specialised Biotechnology Firms in the USA and the UK

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There are over 5000 Specialised Biotechnology Firms (SBFs) in the world, out of which at least 1500 are in the USA, 400 in Canada, and a similar number in the UK. Within this group of SBFs rapid growth is concentrated in some 10% of the firms. This paper compares the growth patterns of SBFs in the USA and the UK, and with the previous results for Canada. These three countries represent nearly 50% of SBFs in the world. By combining several different databases, the paper reveals the determining factors of SBF growth in the two leading countries. Using correlation and logistic regressions for each country, we found that five factors (patents, the targeting of human health products and processes, the support of venture capital, R&D and marketing corporate alliances, and the search for world markets) explain most of the growth of these firms.

Keywords: specialised biotechnology firms, SBFs, unequal growth, competence theory of the firm, resource-based theory of the firm, patents, human health, venture capital, marketing alliances, USA, UK, Canada, United Kingdom, United States, R&, D, research and development

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