Characterising High Growth Firms: Perspectives from the Asia-Pacific Region [article]

Poh Yen Ng, University Of Canterbury
2013
This study advances understanding of the complexity of high growth in technology-based businesses. The study builds on conceptual and applied insights on business growth from the entrepreneurship and strategic management literatures. This thesis uses both qualitative and quantitative methods to develop and then test a model of the performance of high-growth firms. The qualitative study involved case studies of high-growth firms in Malaysia and New Zealand and led to a conceptual model of their
more » ... ual model of their performance. This model was then estimated using original data gathered from a questionnaire survey of a cross-section of high-growth and non-high-growth firms. The model was estimated separately on samples of high-growth and non-high-growth firms and, as expected, it proved a much stronger explanation of the performance of the high-growth sample. Hence the thesis provides important new insights into this small but important group of firms. Sixteen high-growth firms, selected in equal number from Malaysia and New Zealand, agreed to be case studies in the initial phase of the research. Interviews with the CEO/owners and other evidence from these firms led to a conceptual framework of their high-growth experience. This framework highlighted the importance of supportive government policies; internal human resources; external relationships/networks; and the ability of management to dynamically manipulate these resources. Further, the high-growth strategies: product innovation, market expansion, remaining-in-private-ownership and strategy flexibility were underpinned by five main capabilities: innovation, financial, human, marketing and organisational. Challenges from both internal and external environments also influenced growth performance. This conceptual framework was the source of a number of hypotheses that were then tested using a statistically valid sample of firms. A survey was conducted on technology-based firms in the two countries. A total of 163 responses were collected from key decision makers in these firms. The e [...]
doi:10.26021/5299 fatcat:gryzotksubd35pakuo47rlrmge