A previous absence of academic focus on new product launch behaviours and effects has been replaced by a spate of activity in the NPD commercialization process – always an eminent topic among practitioners, since it is the only NPD stage that actually returns cash. Naturally, academics seek theories and law-like generalizations to help understand new product launches in a research sense, as well as to use theories to help explain, predict and teach outcomes and concepts useful to managers, students of management and other researchers. The present manuscript reports the search for a theory base to explain some interesting results of new product launches in the biochemical industry. It has long been known that competing hypotheses lead to better conclusions; thus we attempt competing theories to try to contemplate better strategic thinking about product launches.
Competing theories reveal that some may be superior in explaining results in this particular context, for this particular sample. Yet this study, with a single sample, really only demonstrates the feasibility of the approach. The adventure should continue from a meta-analytic basis to discover something of more universal value to the strategic thinker.