Academic journal article Journal of Management and Organization

Antecedents and Consequences of Co-Opetition Strategies in Small and Medium-Sized Accounting Agencies

Academic journal article Journal of Management and Organization

Antecedents and Consequences of Co-Opetition Strategies in Small and Medium-Sized Accounting Agencies

Article excerpt

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INTRODUCTION

In severely competitive and uncertain environments, in order to survive and grow, enterprises tend to adopt strategies between competition and cooperation, and they have co-opetition relationships, which form competitive interactions. Co-opetition was proposed by Brandenburger and Nalebuff (1996), and refers to cooperation in competition. The relationship among firms is not simply competition or cooperation, as the two might exist simultaneously (Brandenburger & Nalebuff, 1996; Baruch & Lin, 2012; Hung & Chang, 2012; Mantena & Saha, 2012; Peng, Pike, Yang & Roos, 2012; Ritala, 2012; Bouncken & Kraus, 2013; Chen & Hao, 2013; Pellegrin-Boucher, Le Roy & Gurau, 2013; Teng & Huang, 2013; Tomlinson & Fai, 2013). The essence of co-opetition is to realize the complementary use of the advantageous elements of the businesses, enhance competitiveness of both sides, and thus, contribute to the establishment and consolidation of both their competitive positions in the market; therefore, joint action between firms is very important. The co-opetition strategy is a complementary business mindset, and its approach is to try to expand market opportunity, rather than compete for a market of a fixed scope. Such a strategy is of substantial help for small and medium enterprises.

Co-opetition is the strategy commonly adopted by small-scale firms (Levy, Loebbecke & Powell, 2003; Morris, Koçak & Özer, 2007; Gnyawali & Park, 2009). When two companies cooperate in some competitive business activities, the co-opetition strategy will exist. Previous research on the co-opetition strategy mostly focused on alliance governance (Hung & Chang, 2012; Chen & Hao, 2013). Different from previous research, this study tries to probe into factors behind organizations' adoption of co-opetition strategies from the resource-based view. When firms have heterogeneous internal resources, they can construct competitive advantage (Barney, 1991; Peteraf, 1993). When competitive advantage is based on organizational unique resources and capacities, in order to maintain a position in the market, enhance core capacity, and avoid the competition of rivals, the organization tends to launch competitive action. In other words, they are more likely to adopt a competitive strategy and actions. In addition, when organizations cannot totally obtain internal resources, they must exchange with other organizations or other people with related resources in the environment (Lambe & Spekman, 1997). Cooperation can supplement the shortage of resources in an organization and establish competitive advantage. From the perspective of resources, when organizations can keep their unique resources from other organizations' acquisition, and realize that their position will not be influenced by resource sharing, it will enhance cooperation (Morris, Koçak & Özer, 2007). In other words, when adopting the co-opetition strategy, enterprises will evaluate the sufficiency of their resources. The essence of co-opetition is to realize the complementary use of the advantageous elements of the businesses, enhance competitiveness of both sides, and thus, contribute to the establishment and consolidation of both their competitive positions in the market; therefore, joint action between manufacturers is very important. The co-opetition strategy is a complementary business mindset, and its approach is to try to expand market opportunity, rather than compete for a market of a fixed size. Such a strategy is of substantial help for small and medium enterprises.

Regarding subjects, this study selected small and medium accounting firms as the target. In comparison to international or large-scale accounting firms, the non-auditing market in small and medium accounting firms of Taiwan is in monopolistic competition. CPAs (Certified Public Accountant) of small and medium-sized accounting agencies often have unique professional competences, which are displayed in non-audit services. …

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