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How Novice and Experienced Entrepreneurs Name New Ventures

Engel, Y., van Werven, R. ORCID: 0000-0002-9336-0069 & Keizer, A. (2020). How Novice and Experienced Entrepreneurs Name New Ventures. Journal of Small Business Management, doi: 10.1080/00472778.2020.1738820


We examine the role of entrepreneurial experience in shaping a key decision that every entrepreneur has to make: Naming their new venture. Using a qualitative approach, we compare and contrast serial and novice entrepreneurs as they name the same company. We find several naming practices and show that novice and serial entrepreneurs use distinct naming strategies reflecting appeals to cognitive and emotional resonance. Our findings contribute to theory on firm names with a much-needed account of naming practices and provide insights for research on legitimation by showing that differences in entrepreneurial experience are consequential for venture naming decisions.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: © 2020 The Author(s). Published with license by Taylor & Francis Group, LLC. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Publisher Keywords: new venture naming; entrepreneurial experience; verbal protocol analysis; legitimacy
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor > HD28 Management. Industrial Management
Departments: Bayes Business School > Management
Text - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons: Attribution International Public License 4.0.

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