Initial relationship development in new business ventures

Antonella La Rocca, David Ford, Ivan Snehota

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


customer relationships for a new venture. All companies face the challenge of new-relationship development in order to achieve growth and to replace relationships which have been lost or are in decline. But the challenge of developing the first customer relationships of a new venture is likely to be particularly acute because the new venture's marketing function and its offering to customers are likely to be undefined and undeveloped. This paper is based on a case study of initial customer relationship development in a new venture of an established business. The paper analyses the issues that the company faced in developing these initial relationships and the approaches to relationship development that it took. The case analysis leads to the conclusion that the development of initial relationships can be facilitated by an ‘open marketing function’ involving a number of functional areas both in the supplier and in the initial customers. The paper draws managerial implications from the case analysis for the task of marketing in this situation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1025-1032
JournalIndustrial Marketing Management
Publication statusPublished - 2013


  • New business ventures, Customer relationships, Business-to-business, Interaction, Marketing function


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