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11 Jun 2020

Corporate Venturing during the COVID-19 pandemic

Webinar organized by RSM/Erasmus University in close cooperation with the Corporate Venturing Network

View the webinar on: http://https://webinar.eur.nl/ui/webinars/53/view 

A crisis such as COVID-19 poses an immediate threat to companies’ innovation activities, as innovation requires slack resources. In particular, those innovations that are fraught with risks and where the outcomes are more distant in time, may be subject to a sudden resource cut. Prior research has stressed the importance for firms to engage in corporate venturing activities to ensure their long-term survival. Nevertheless, it is exactly those activities that are most vulnerable to crises as decision makers may find it hard to judge what the exact value is of these activities. As such, the ongoing investments in corporate venturing might be heavily affected by the current crisis. On the other hand, there is also evidence that firms that invest in innovation in an anti-cyclical way outperform others. Therefore, it is important to understand how the COVID-19 pandemic affect corporate venturing decisions and, in particular, under what circumstances firms decide to freeze their corporate venturing portfolios (do nothing), fight (invest) or flight (divest). Therefore, Corporate Venturing Network (CVN) and RSM/Erasmus University decided to conduct research on this topic. The research question is: “How does the COVID-19 pandemic affect decisions surrounding internal and external corporate venturing?” In the last 6 weeks 35 corporates completed a questionnaire and were interviewed. During the webinar we will present the preliminary results of this research and facilitate the exchange of experiences and best practices among participants.

We also would like to have a follow-up interviews in the Augustus/September time frame to investigate what really happened. The results of these second interviews will be presented during the Corporate Venturing & Entrepreneurship Summit on September 29th in Rotterdam. 

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