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Corporate entrepreneurship: The case of Naturis

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  1. Introduction.
  2. Presentation of Riso Gallo and Naturis.
  3. Corporate entrepreneurship and corporate venture in Riso Gallo: The role of Naturis.
  4. The organization of Naturis.
    1. Formalization.
    2. The production process.
    3. Organicity.
    4. Centralization.
    5. Integration systems.
    6. Communication systems.
    7. Value based rewarding systems.
    8. The management team.
    9. The organizational structure.
  5. Conclusion.
  6. References.

The study of Corporate Entrepreneurship (CE) is gaining increasing interest within the field of Entrepreneurship. Much research has been carried out, mainly focusing on identifying determinants and outcomes of CE. Scholars suggest that the term ?corporate entrepreneurship? encompasses two types of phenomena: corporate venturing (CV) and strategic renewal. CV is seen as a way in which firm-level entrepreneurship is expressed. Nevertheless, a combination of empirical observation and theoretical reflections has led us to reconsider the phenomenon of CV. We carried out a case study analysis of a well known Italian company operating in the food industry: Riso Gallo. Past research on the organizational determinants of firm-level entrepreneurship investigated only those factors strictly related to the internal environment of the company, overlooking those organizational aspects that go beyond the current firm boundaries. The case study suggests that CV can be seen not only as an effect of CE but also as an organizational arrangement that enhances entrepreneurship in companies.

[...] A company that sells products that has no market because a market for these products does not exist yet.' (Cesare Preve, Chairman) Summing up, the organization of Naturis has all those features that are considered organizational antecedents of Corporate Entrepreneurship (CE). Naturis is originated as a spin-off of Riso Gallo, an established and well- known Italian family company, founded in 1876. The company Naturis, a medium-sized Italian firm plays a strong entrepreneurial role within the mature industry of rice. Conclusion The set up of Naturis appears to be a case of CV, an expression of CE. [...]


[...] More precisely, Naturis is a case of internal venturing, resulting from the entrepreneurial orientation of Riso Gallo. Nevertheless, Naturis was responsible for the subsequent entrepreneurial activities of Riso Gallo, consisting in the continuous development of new products based on the dehydration technology. Thus, this case suggests that CV can be considered not only as a way through which the CE expresses itself, but also as a determinant of it. Past research on the organizational determinants of firm-level entrepreneurship investigated only those factors strictly related to the internal environment of the company, overlooking those organizational aspects that go beyond the current firm boundaries. [...]


[...] This is the case with filled rice, rice-based food in cans, rice-based desserts and rice-based dry mixes: all products whose launch on the consumer market was made possible thanks to the properties of Naturis rice. Moreover, in many cases Naturis rice made the production process of its customers innovative; this is the case with rice-based biscuits and frozen food, pasteurized and sterilized food. From this perspective, it is of great importance to identify the areas in which the value perceived by the customer can be improved. [...]

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