Open Access Te Herenga Waka-Victoria University of Wellington
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Baa, Baa, Black Sheep Have You Any Wool? Developing the RBV Through a Study of the New Zealand Merino Clothing Industry

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Version 1 2021-11-11, 23:45
posted on 2023-03-13, 22:59 authored by Jackson, Andrew

This thesis explores how the traditional approaches to researching the Resource-Based View (RBV) do not fully address the heterogeneity within the participants of the research. Traditional approaches assume similar levels of knowledge, prioritisation, and value (awareness) are held across the participants. This thesis proposes that this similarity may not exist for every industry. Focused on the New Zealand merino clothing industry, this research employed two studies to determine the key characteristics and perceptions of the main players in the industry. Initially an industry profile is formed from secondary data sources, which covers the 30 years since the inception of the New Zealand merino clothing industry. This profile forms the basis for the interview sample and provides comparison for interview findings. Through the use of open-ended questions and a semi-structured interview process this thesis carried out interviews with the CEOs of thirteen New Zealand based merino clothing firms from throughout New Zealand. These interviews offered the participants the opportunity to express their perspectives on the resources they deem to be most important. The outcomes of these interviews are surprising; with the results questioning more assumptions of RBV research than just the similarity of awareness. Drawing together the analysis of the industry profile and the findings of the interviews, these two studies highlight a number of key findings. Most significantly, it is apparent that the majority of the interviewees do not perceive themselves as competing, though the industry profile indicates that the industry has a high level of competitive rivalry. Additionally, the firms do not appear to be differentiating themselves from one another, with few unique approaches utilised by the interviewees in regards to product, design, and business practice. Lastly, this thesis illustrates that these differences in perception between the industry profile analysis and the interview findings could be due to the ambition and future perspectives of the CEOs.


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Date of Award



Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington

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Author Retains Copyright

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Degree Grantor

Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington

Degree Level


Degree Name

Master of Commerce and Administration

Victoria University of Wellington Item Type

Awarded Research Masters Thesis



Victoria University of Wellington School

Victoria Management School


Davenport, Sally; Daellenbach, Urs