Networks in small manufacturing firms

Esyllt Thomas, Nerys Fuller-Love

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

71 Citations (SciVal)


The theories of networks have become more popular in recent years when discussing business structures. It can be said that co-operation is seen as a theory that plays an important role in the survival of many small and medium sized businesses. Co-operative and networking strategies amongst business in Mid Wales has brought them many benefits and a competitive advantage that they would not be able to afford on their own. These issues were investigated in this research into the practical value of networks in small manufacturing companies. The aim of this study is to look at the provision for small business by analysing their value, by noting the implications, and providing recommendations for the future of networking amongst small and medium sized enterprises. The small manufacturing businesses in this study saw that networking was a very cost-effective way compared to other strategies to improve their performance. The businesses co-operate in order to share information and resources and to undertake joint projects. By exchanging information and know-how, networks can be an important tool for small business entrepreneurs to improve their businesses.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)244-253
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Small Business and Enterprise Development
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2005


  • Competitive advantage
  • Manufacturing systems
  • Small enterprises
  • Social networks
  • Wales


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