Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to provide an account of who forms what market assets bymaking what market investments in a business network.
Design/methodology/approach: To investigate what market investments were made by certainactors into resource interfaces as market assets, the author draws on a case network based on aninvestigation of the Chilean salmon production network. To this end, the author chose the fish–beingthe focal object resource in that network–as a point of departure. The author systematicallyinvestigates the resource interfaces that this resource has with three other specific resources: feed,fishmeal, and vaccines in a thick case study.
Findings: This study shows that market investments entail committing resources toresource interfaces which turns them into market assets. Resource interfaces as market assets haveimplications on how we characterize and value resource interfaces. Multilateral resource interfacesbecome valuable to firms as a result of continuous market investments made into them. This producesdifferent types of resource interfaces, some of which are of mediatory character bridging betweendistant resources in a network.
Research limitations/implications: This study focuses on the market investments being made tocreate and sustain market assets. Of course such assets are linked to a firm’s internal assets which thisstudy do not investigate. In addition, this study emphasizes the commitment of resources into existingresource interfaces, the ensuing creation of market assets, and its use and value for firms anddownplays a firm’s need to account for market investments and the market investments required tocreate a new resource interface.
Practical implications: As resource interfaces are valuable market assets, it is important tounderstand the functioning of different types of resource interfaces so as to exploit their potential asefficient as possible. This paper shows that some resources act as bridging resources connecting theborders of two indirectly related resources. Controlling bridging resources becomes an essential taskfor managers in business networks.
Social implications: Understanding the market investments into resource interfaces enables firmsto become more skilled in organizing and controlling networks. These networks can play importantroles in the economic development of society and create improved societal conditions for people,organizations, and economies.
Originality/value: By combining a market investment and market asset conceptualization ofinvestments in networks with a resource interaction approach, this paper provides an enhancedunderstanding of resource interfaces as market assets. Theoretical implications for our understandingof resource interfaces–its value and character–are discussed.
Emerald Group Publishing Limited, 2016. Vol. 10, no 3, 409-442 p.
Business networks, Bridging resources, Fish farming industry, Market assets, Market investments, Resource interfaces