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Citation Information

Type Thesis or Dissertation - PhD Thesis
Title Conceptualising a Model to Promote "Post Start-up" Small Business Growth in Sri Lanka
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2008
URL http://ir.canterbury.ac.nz/bitstream/handle/10092/2229/thesis_fulltext.pdf?sequence=1
The objective of this thesis is to determine whether it is possible to improve the adequacy of support to “post start-up” small businesses in Sri Lanka by making changes to the current support regime to encourage their growth. The interest in this issue stems from (a) previous research carried out which highlights the substantially lower contribution to employment growth from the small businesses in Sri Lanka as compared to what is observed in other countries, and (b) the increasing emphasis upon stimulating the small business sector to make a significant contribution to the national economy which is apparent in recent policy proposals in the White Paper presented by the Task Force for Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) development. An examination of extant literature suggests that the understanding of the factors that influence the growth of post start-up small businesses in developing countries is limited. Knowledge is also limited on the type of support that is required to adequately address such factors. To systematically investigate the existing knowledge gaps in these areas a questionnaire survey was conducted. Being cognisant of the reality that identified support needs should be client-initiated the survey placed emphasis upon understanding owner-managers’ evaluation of factors perceived to influence small business growth. Their views on how to further develop the existing support was solicited. In-depth interviews were also carried out with small business owner-managers and key employees of organisations providing small business support. A variety of statistical techniques were employed to analyse the responses to the questionnaire survey. Overall the results indicate that the factors influencing the growth of post start-up small businesses are highly individual in nature. Results of the study also indicate that the employment growth in post start-up small businesses is very limited. Similarly the growth intentions of the majority of responding owner-managers are moderate to low. The findings also indicate many “importance-adequacy support gaps” which show that the existing post start-up support to address perceived important factors is inadequate.

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