In this essay I am going to explain the concept of intrapreneurship, contemplated within the management process of starting, and I will study its implication to the creation of the mobile operator Giffgaff; the role of the parent company and the innovative nature of Giffgaff will also be examined.
Intrapreneurship, also referred as corporate entrepreneurship, is a key concept in this era of fierce market competition. The start-up philosophy applied to established companies positively promotes change and innovation by developing new ideas, procedures or products; this combination constitutes a motor for growth for existing firms and an essential strategy for success, as organisations need to adapt to the continuous changes of the markets to survive. Nevertheless, it is far from easy to implement entrepreneurial activities; the process presents some challenges and many ventures often fail in their way to success (Bridge et al. 2009)
This is not the situation for Giffgaff, a case of a successful intrapreneurial venture based on an unusual business model within the telecom sector. Giffgaff is a UK based MVNO (Mobile Virtual Network Operator), powered and owned by Telefonica O2 UK; however, it operates as a completely separate subsidiary company. It was founded in 2009 by Gav Thompson, head of brand strategy for O2, who established the company under the principles of mutual giving and fairness. What makes Giffgaff unique and innovative in its sector is not only its competitive prices but the way in which the business model is conceived: it is run by its members, who get involved in the strategy of the company, participating on everything from sales, marketing, customer service to product innovation. In return, customers are rewarded