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Innovation and entrepreneurship as strategies for success among Cuban-based firms in the late years of the transatlantic slave trade

Manuel Barcia and Effie Kesidou ()

Business History, 2018, vol. 60, issue 4, 542-561

Abstract: This article examines how Cuban-based firms and entrepreneurs circumvented ever- increasing risks in the illegal slave trade. The article sheds light to this question by analyzing new qualitative information of 65 Cuban-based firms against the Slavevoyages database. Our findings indicate that Cuban-based firms were entrepreneurial as they exploited the opportunities arising from the volatility of the slave trade by: (a) internalizing networks of agents which allowed the rapid diffusion of information, (b) diversifying trading goods and expanding the number of partnerships to reduce transaction costs and risk, and (c) adopting technological innovations that modified the design and use of vessels.

Date: 2018
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DOI: 10.1080/00076791.2017.1332044

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