Over the last years, the worldwide agribusiness sector is facing challenges due to globalization, the increased customers’ quality requirements in products and the development of new technologies. So, actors are looking for new business models able to guarantee competitive advantage in facing the global companies, to expand their operations, to improve the production processes as well as to develop new consumer market niches. A successful approach in order to support agri-businesses growth and competitiveness, helping them achieving higher performance is based on business network contracts. This organizational model enables networked agribusiness firms to operate on markets with the competitiveness of a medium-large firm without sacrificing their autonomy and flexibility. The paper investigates the phenomenon of Italian business networks contracts involving firms operating in the agricultural and agrifood sectors and which are localized in Southern Italy, as it results from the public database of RetImpresa, the dedicated Confindustria Agency for business networks in Italy. By combining qualitative and quantitative analysis, the paper, on the one hand, analyzes how many business networks contracts have been formalized in Southern-Italy. On the other hand, the effects on firms’ performance of business networks ‘with legal subjectivity’ (the so called ‘reti soggetto’, according to Law no.134/2012) are analyzed and compared to the ‘contractual’ business-networks ones. The objective is to verify whether the network contract constitutes an effective organizational and production model that is functional to the needs of SMEs active in the various sectors of agribusiness industry or whether it is only considered a duplicate of other forms of collaboration.

The Italian “Network Contract”: Strategic Cooperation Tool for Competitiveness of SMEs in the Agribusiness sector

Patrizia Pastore
;
Antonio Ricciardi;Silvia Tommaso
2019

Abstract

Over the last years, the worldwide agribusiness sector is facing challenges due to globalization, the increased customers’ quality requirements in products and the development of new technologies. So, actors are looking for new business models able to guarantee competitive advantage in facing the global companies, to expand their operations, to improve the production processes as well as to develop new consumer market niches. A successful approach in order to support agri-businesses growth and competitiveness, helping them achieving higher performance is based on business network contracts. This organizational model enables networked agribusiness firms to operate on markets with the competitiveness of a medium-large firm without sacrificing their autonomy and flexibility. The paper investigates the phenomenon of Italian business networks contracts involving firms operating in the agricultural and agrifood sectors and which are localized in Southern Italy, as it results from the public database of RetImpresa, the dedicated Confindustria Agency for business networks in Italy. By combining qualitative and quantitative analysis, the paper, on the one hand, analyzes how many business networks contracts have been formalized in Southern-Italy. On the other hand, the effects on firms’ performance of business networks ‘with legal subjectivity’ (the so called ‘reti soggetto’, according to Law no.134/2012) are analyzed and compared to the ‘contractual’ business-networks ones. The objective is to verify whether the network contract constitutes an effective organizational and production model that is functional to the needs of SMEs active in the various sectors of agribusiness industry or whether it is only considered a duplicate of other forms of collaboration.
9788896687123
Business Network Contract, Small to Medium-Sized Networks, Agribusiness Sector, Agrifood Industry, Competitiveness
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11770/296410
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