Big companies can cultivate entrepreneurship ecosystems — as investors with capital for ventures to grow, as customers who buy innovative products, or as marketing partners to give the small dynamic firms global reach. Therefore, there is a symbiotic necessity of large companies and entrepreneurial ventures living together: You cannot have a flourishing entrepreneurship ecosystem without large companies to cultivate it, intentionally or accidentally.

Yet one of the dark secrets of the flourishing of entrepreneurship in parts of the world as diverse as Israel, India, Colorado, and Denmark has been "corporate fall" — the death or shrinkage of large corporate incumbents whose detritus feeds the entrepreneurship culture within a region.

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When Big Companies Fall, Entrepreneurship Rises
When a whale dies, the 30-100 ton body — or “whale fall” — slowly, silently sinks to the ocean bottom where it becomes the wellspring of a complex new microcosm of seabed flora and fauna tha…

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  • Gord Harling

    Very funny – I have seen this happen time and time again, Large company draws engineers and scientists to an area, closes and pays them all severance, 10 to 20 years later there are dozens of companies created by the ex-employees often in very diverse technological areas – late 70s Siltech Intl in Ottawa closed and led to Mitel, Gandalf, March Networks, Corel, Newbridge… late 80s in Calgary NovAtel failed and spawned many NovAtel spinoffs plus WiLan and others