Table 1 Benefits of SBAP Assistance in a Niche Life Cycle
Niche targeted by Benefits for Benefits for others Benefits SBAP SBAP cliengs in the Niche overall New Niche + + ++ Older but Growing + 0 + Mature/declining + - 0
A number of propositions emerge from the above discussion which need to be tested empirically in order to establish the validity of the POLC in terms of its value in predicting the outcomes from SBAP intervention.
SRAPs directed at clients in older but still growing niches will have resulted in additional jobs and market development, but this will largely be confined to the clients of the SBAP.
Often, the target of SBAPs will be disadvantaged groups (such as women or the unemployed), disadvantaged industries (for example, traditional cottage industries under threat from modern technology), and economically disadvantaged regions (such as where catastrophes have occurred -- war, famine).
The physical manifestation of SBAPs takes a variety of forms.
The implication is that government SBAPs should not be interfering where markets are selecting naturally against small businesses, else new inefficiencies may arise.
Wood (1994) distinguishes between two types of benefits that SBAPs provide, primary and secondary.
Wood suggests that, although SBAPs may report job creation as a consequence of their intervention, additional jobs or sales created in the client's business may have come at the expense of other firms.
SBAPs directed at clients in brand new niches or industries will have promoted more rapid development of the niche;
SBAPs directed at improving the performance of clients in old mature niches may have resulted in additional jobs or market penetration (additional sales dollars and/or turnover), but this will have been offset by business closure or job losses elsewhere in the niche;