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EMAC 2021 Annual Conference

Product innovation strategy and competitive advantage: an empirical study of Portuguese exporters

Published: May 25, 2021


Ana Lisboa, CDRSP, ESTG, Polytechnic of Leiria; Gabor Nagy, Inseec Business School; Eleni Tsougkou, University of Strathclyde; John Cadogan, Loughborough University; Ian R. Hodgkinson, Loughborough University; Joao S. Oliveira, Loughborough University; Victoria Story, Loughborough University; Nathaniel Boso, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science & Technology


The study seeks to develop and test a theory of how firm-level product innovation strategies (innovation intensity and radicality) interplay to shape one form of competitive advantage, the firm’s customer value creation effectiveness. We argue that product innovation intensity has an inverted U-shaped relationship with customer value creation effectiveness, and that this relationship is moderated by the extent to which the product innovation strategy is characterized by radicalness, as well as the nature of the customer and competitive environments facing the firm. Our empirical work, based on survey data, provides support for the contingent nature of the success of product innovation strategies in providing the firm with access to sources of competitive advantage. If firms seek to optimize their customer value creation effectiveness, our findings are consistent with the claim that there are specific combinations of product innovation strategies that can be used on this front.


This work is supported by the Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia (FCT) and Centro2020 through the following Projects: UIDB/04044/2020, UIDP/04044/2020 and PAMI - ROTEIRO/0328/2013 (Nº 022158)