Sectoral entry-barriers for entrepreneurial activities – A Russian start-up between challenging global markets and local conservative path dependencies
Sectoral foresight activities often identify technological opportunities but leave the question open who will pursue them. Here, entrepreneurial activities have become increasingly important for the introduction and commercialization of new technological solutions. The same is true for Russia’s oil and gas industry, which requires a major technological upscaling to stay competitive. Promising start-ups though face often high barriers and fail to commercialize superior technological solutions.
This paper discusses the experiences of a Russian oilfield service start-up in commercializing a self-developed technology for increasing the productivity of oil wells.
The start-up faced conservatism from corporate decision makers, declining oil prices and suboptimal protection of intellectual property rights. The company overcame most barriers through moving into other markets outside of Russia, as closing a deal with customers in the USA and Canada went much faster than the extended business cycles of national oil companies.
This paper connects sectoral foresight activities to the real-life experience of a start-up. The findings suggest that entry barriers need to be included in the planning process to really pave the way for a greater impact.