Few would deny the crucial role that entrepreneurs play in our increasingly global economy--but exactly what is this vital, yet loosely defined business force we call the entrepreneurial spirit? This landmark study is the first to examine analytically the nature of the opportunities that entrepreneurs pursue, the problems they face, the traits they require, and the social and economic contributions they make. Until recently, entrepreneurs have been largely ignored in modern economic theory. But at the dawn of a networked age, marked by the advent of e-business and the home office, there's no question that entrepreneurs have recaptured the popular imagination. Studies now show that most men and women dream of starting their own businesses rather than rising through the corporate ranks. Yet in spite of increased attention by many of today's leading business schools, entrepreneurship has remained largely a mystery, an apparantly intuitive sense of values possessed by certain individuals. This book targets the issues central to successful start-up ventures, such as endowments and opportunities, planning versus adaptation, securing resources, corporate initiatives, venture capital, revolutionary ventures and the evolution of fledgling businesses. Focusing on hard data and evaluations of numerous start-up businesses, including many of today's major industry leaders, this book presents a new economic model--a key to understanding the guts, determination, luck and skills that constitute the underpinnings of corporate success. Written in clear, concise prose, The Origin and Evolution of New Businesses goes behind the charts and graphs of business theory to the true heart of success. It is essential reading for business students, would-be entrepreneurs, or executives wanting to incorporate the vitality of the entrepreneurial spirit into their organization.