Purpose – The aim of this paper is to identify the effects of business cycles on industrial business‐to‐business relationships within extremely volatile industries. Design/methodology/approach – The paper is an in‐depth case study on Outotec plc, a leading provider of technologies for the mining and metal industries. Findings – The study identifies the changes in a business relationship during a business cycle as the dominance between the parties and the cooperative and the competitive nature of the relationship alternate. Practical implications – The study identifies ways to smooth the effects of business cycles in extremely volatile industries from the viewpoint of a project‐based technology provider. Originality/value – While a significant amount of macroeconomic research on cycles and a few studies on industry‐specific business cycles can be found, this study is a rare example of company‐specific research on surviving business cycles.
Management Decision – Emerald Publishing
Published: Mar 2, 2012
Keywords: Business cycles; Project business; Relationship management; Volatile business environment; Business‐to‐business marketing