Consequently, the contingent effect of high unemployment is a burgeoning informal and entrepreneurial sector. Adapted: Doing Business Consequently Dutta, Geiger and Lanvin, , rank Zimbabwe lowly in terms of availability of venture capital, access to the latest technologies, innovative capacity and gross tertiary education enrolment as shown in Table 2.
Importantly, this affects the level of skills and competencies in the market.
Table 2. Figure 2. Source: Adapted from Doing Business In Zimbabwe was ranked 29th out of the 38 countries surveyed.
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Within the ambit of this research, important prosperity indicators are entrepreneurship and opportunity and the economy Legatum Institute, Consequently, entrepreneurial opportunity in Zimbabwe is ranked 23rd out of the 38 countries Legatum Institute, The low and reflects the depressed economic environment in the country. According to Dutta, Geiger and Lanvin , mobile and Internet penetration have a mid-table ranking of 72 out of countries respectively as tabulated in Table 2.
Yet, the usage of Information and Communication Technologies ICT is ranked poorly at out of countries in the world. Furthermore, Zimbabwe is ranked lowly at out of in terms of the use of ICTs in delivering basic services such as health. This is in spite of the fact that the major Internet Access Providers IAPs have connected to the undersea cables delivering bandwidth to Africa. The prevailing perception is based on cost of development and the quality of service.
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This low ranking reflects deficiencies in both infrastructural and the country's ability to deliver softer skills in innovation. Furthermore, the low ranking of th out of for firm level technology absorption reflects on Zimbabwean firms' appetite for technological solutions. Consequently, Dutta, Geiger and Lanvin, , in their 1st Pillar reveal the malady as Zimbabwe ranks th out of countries in terms of laws relating to ICT,th and th out of in preventing piracy and intellectual property protection respectively as shown in Table 2.
In spite of this it can still be indicated as rudimentary steps. Consequently, the new product development process is not empirically tested but Cybercard engages in 6 key steps in new product development as graphically depicted in Figure 2. Yet, the value of technology start-ups like Cybercard, developing a systematic approach to new product development would significantly contribute to better success rates in new product development. In a bid to address the research problem a systematic approach to new product development is proposed for Cybercard and Technology start-ups in Zimbabwe to improve success rates.
Consequently, Chapter 3 will entail a literature study on the subject of new product development, delving into the influence of entrepreneurship, innovation and knowledge on new product development. The increase bears semblance to the prehistoric Cambrian explosion, when life forms started multiplying over the earth Siegle, The reasons for this Cambrian explosion according to this author varies from entrepreneur to entrepreneur and from nation to nation. Yet, at the heart of most technology start-ups is a new product or service derived from new technology or new knowledge; the founder of which, believes will disrupt the market and generate millions of dollars profits.
The idea of a 'bet' insinuates a gamble. It more likely reflects the relentless and sometimes futile pursuit of adventurous individuals to help society innovate through a concerted process of experimentation or trial and error Siegle, Rancig Moogk , contends that the start-up process begins when the entrepreneur envisions a solution to solve a specific customer problem.
It evolves into tasks structured to turn an idea into a viable and marketable product. Rancig Moogk , concurs stating that it is a complex process with an uncertain outcome. Furthermore, the new product development process is inherently complex and multidisciplinary in nature. By inference new product development transcends the entrepreneur, evolving into a new venture that Park citing Gartner , terms a phenomenon; an expressly prodigious occurrence. And for this reason, it is problematic to exclusively study the entrepreneur Gartner cited by Park Instead, Park citing Gartner , in later research highlights the importance of a fresh observation of both the business and the founder within the start-up process to establish an impartial view of the phenomenon.
Subsequently, Park citing Bygrave and Hofer, , contends that the entrepreneur is the initiator and the business is the mechanism applied to exploit the opportunity. This author would add that between the nodes of entrepreneur and the business, the product or service is a critical factor to be considered. Successful new product development translates into the fruitful attainment of an opportunity. Importantly, the product's ability to meet the desired need and create value defines a successful business. Inversely, the absence of a well-developed and customer centric product potentially deems both the firm and the entrepreneur failures.
This chapter reviews literature surrounding the process of new product development within technology start-ups. This author will explore literature alluding to specific aspects of the process namely entrepreneurship technology entrepreneurship, new product development, knowledge management and innovation management. The chapter will undertake to uncover the significance of new product development in technology start- ups. The intention is to uncover the value of a systematic approach to new product development that integrates entrepreneurship, knowledge and innovation.
Though referring to the survival of large corporations, the author contends that product innovation is similarly important to the survival and prosperity of technology start-ups, whose entry into a volatile world is significantly riskier. Technology start-ups commence from the bottom of the pile attempting either to compete with incumbent firms within a particular sector, open new markets for traditional firms using the digital space, or creating a unique user experience previously non-existent.
This naturally means that technology start-ups need to be competitive and innovative to survive and grow. The studies of Tsai and Lan citing Timmon, , reveal that about Therefore, to achieve competitiveness, technology start-ups require a product or service acceptable to the customer and competitive. Yet, 1 out of 10 new product introductions result in a profitable business Blank Firstly, there is significant risk involved in delivering a new product as a result of the extreme uncertainty prevailing in a specific market.
This may be caused by various factors that affect the new product development process such as the entrepreneur's ability to recognize and harness an opportunity and convert it to a product Park It is the entrepreneur's ability to pitch a solution to the customer better than fierce incumbent competitors.
Additionally, being a human institution suggests that it is susceptible to human proclivities internally and externally. This author would contend that successfully developing and implementing a new product is invariably linked to the success of a technology start-up. Furthermore, the new product development process relies on applying a plethora of steps that transcend the entrepreneur's individual ability to achieve success Park, Additionally, Cooper , suggests that the 8 critical success factors for successful new product in figure 3. Adapted: Cooper, A distinct and effective innovation management process that delivers a unique product with a distinctive business model is necessary Park This makes up a critical mix of internally focussed ingredients necessary for a technology start up to survive.
Consequently Stevenson, citing Stevenson, , , and states; "…entrepreneurship is the pursuit of opportunity beyond resources controlled". It is an amiable yet precarious search for success outside of existing circumstances. According to Cuervo, Ribeiro and Roig citing Shane and Venkataraman, , the purpose of entrepreneurship is to discover, assess and exploit opportunities.
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This maps to the following perspective of Scarborough , quoting Machiavelli n. It is the ability of the entrepreneur to exploit a gap in the market whilst navigating risk for economic advantage mixed with a tinge of social efficacy. Consequently, it is a new product or service that secures customer interest, for profit and wealth creation through innovation and knowledge Deeds, This corroborates the research of Kelley, Singer and Harrington , and Soddy which, concludes that globally, most entrepreneurs pursue opportunities motivated to improve their lives economically.
Improved livelihoods are a by-product of a successful business venture built on a successful product or service. Park citing Bygrave and Hofer , contends that the entrepreneur is an initiator or catalyst and the key ingredient in the formation of a new business and consequentially the development of a new product.
Augmenting his view Park , proposes that entrepreneurship entails 3 intersecting elements, the entrepreneur, technology and the knowledge and experience of the firm. The 3 intersecting points can be interrogated using questions as presented by Cuervo, Ribeiro and Roig , namely; "…What happens when entrepreneurs act? Why do they act? Why, when and how do opportunities for the creation of goods and services come into existence? Why, when and how do some people and not others discover and exploit these opportunities? And finally, why, when and how are different modes of action used to exploit entrepreneurial opportunities?
It is not the purpose of this research to attempt to answer these questions in depth. Rather, these questions serve as reflective pivot points as this author explores new product development. Cuervo, Ribeiro and Roig , argue that there is limited knowledge surrounding the reasons why entrepreneurs pursue an idea, how they do it or the environment conducive for exploiting an opportunity.
An attempt to handle such a study is beyond this author's literature review. Inversely, would be sufficient to review technology based or technology entrepreneurship and answers the questions posed by Cuervo, Ribeiro and Roig , to appreciate the emergence of technology start-ups. Essentially it is entrepreneurship that takes advantage of changes in society caused by technical or scientific advancement.
Siyanobola et al. This would be economic, as it entails sustained profitability and going concern. It is more than a commercial opportunity; it is focused around converting distinct knowledge, innovation, scientific capability or techne. Secondly, it involves harnessing the potential of financial and human resources. This is beyond employing the task to any given individual but individuals with unique and high value talents and knowledge Herrmann, et al. Consequently Dewi x and Siyanbola et al, augment Runge citing Dorf and Byers xv , by proposing characteristics that shape a technology enterprise namely, high potential opportunity, technology intensive opportunity, unique technology, high risk of failure, longer time to market and demand for infrastructure.
The importance of technology entrepreneurship in economic growth.
Notably, technology entrepreneurship contributes to the growth of a market, thereby contributing to the development of an industry and an economy. According to Hsu, "…entrepreneurs are efficiency inducing change agents". This captures the distinct value of technology entrepreneurs within society as leaders or pioneers driven to reduce system inefficiencies through innovation.
This is achieved when entrepreneurially minded actors harness untapped economic opportunities Hsu, This suggests that entrepreneurs including technology entrepreneurs 'move' an economy forward with their efforts to introduce new products in the improve the current market. More profoundly Hsu , argues that whether they succeed or fail the existence of such players in a market is vital. Their existence is both catalytic and embryonic. In terms of being catalytic, even a failed new product inspires progress forward and further research into a new area or potential innovative space.
Siegle , proposes that it is an avenue for 'millennials' to create jobs for themselves in light of prevailing harsh economic conditions around the world. The author bases his argument on a survey of 12 thousand people aged between 18 and 30 conducted in 27 countries that showed that nearly two thirds of the respondents were open to explore entrepreneurial opportunities.
This level of openness among the generation called 'millennials' may be a result of the prevailing economic climate but triggered by the disruptive emergence of the internet Runge, Technology entrepreneurship is a vehicle for prosperity for individuals, the broader spectrum of society, and the nation as a whole Bailleti, , moving an economy forward through successful or failed new product development attempts. Technology entrepreneurship and product development. Technology entrepreneurship akin to general entrepreneurship depends on the recognition and successful exploitation of an opportunity in the market.
In most cases technology start-ups pursue opportunities viewing high levels of potential through customer acceptance, innovation, competitive advantage and most importantly rich returns on investment Siyanobola et al.
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Runge , encapsulates the value of technology entrepreneurship by stating that; "…disruptive technologies, allowing the introduction of completely new offerings for new applications and approaches that have the potential to create a new market or new industry or transform an existing one, work by offerings, at least initially, little in the way of performance, but plenty in terms of cheapness, convenience and ease of use".
A technology start-up takes advantage of a gap in the market by delivering a new product commensurate to emerging customer needs. Appropriately, opportunity recognition is an important aspect of entrepreneurship Ardichvili, Cardozo and Ray, , and development of these opportunities potentially leads to success.
Ardichvili, Cardozo and Ray citing Schumpeter , Kirzner , and Casson , propose that opportunity is the chance to meet a market need by creatively combining resources to create superior value. This confers a level of importance of an entrepreneur's ability to convert ideas, innovations and knowledge into commercial products or services for public consumption. Technology entrepreneurship is a mode of delivering value to the market through new business models, business processes and product designed for the customer.
What may be deemed 'academic' is the quality of study throughout the evolution of human civilisation.
The Pursuit Of New Product Development: The Business Development Process
Studying and understanding new product development contributes to the growth of markets by unravelling new technologies and ideas. New product development is a pervasive field of study of the day to day sustenance of human beings. Yet, it cannot be taken simplistically, as with complex chemical or mechanical products; the paperclip is the result of a complex process of converting an idea into a working and marketable new product.