City Research Online

Continuity and change in a spin-off venture: the process of reimprinting

Ferriani, S., Garnsey, E. & Lorenzoniy, G. (2012). Continuity and change in a spin-off venture: the process of reimprinting. Industrial and Corporate Change, 21(4), pp. 1011-1048. doi: 10.1093/icc/dts001


Because new entrants very often spin off from established firms, their learning and capabilities are closely linked to their organizational and technological heritage. While this may provide an initial advantage, parental influence can generate inertia and resistance to change, unless the new company is able to unlearn inappropriate practices and create its unique competitive identity. The tension between inheritance and search for novelty is the subject of the article. Building on an in-depth case study of Acorn Computers and ARM semiconductors, we present a model of intergenerational learning and spin-off performance. Early parental influence is followed by intense learning, improvisation and response to feedback from the market. This we term reimprinting, to emphasize the enduring competitive and organizational identity established early on by the spin-off, which in this case provided the basis for disruptive innovation. Focus on the parent–progeny dyad as the unit of analysis can reveal micro-processes that reconstitute past experience to make possible both continuity and innovation in the spin-off venture

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: This is a pre-copyedited, author-produced version of an article accepted for publication in 'Industrial and Corporate Change' following peer review. The version of record Simone Ferriani, Elizabeth Garnsey, Gianni Lorenzoni; Continuity and change in a spin-off venture: the process of reimprinting, Industrial and Corporate Change, Volume 21, Issue 4, 1 August 2012, Pages 1011–1048 is available online at:
Departments: Bayes Business School > Management
Text - Accepted Version
Download (422kB) | Preview



Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics

Actions (login required)

Admin Login Admin Login