IP Modularity in Software Ecosystems: How SugarCRM’s IP and Business Model Shape Its Product Architecture

  • Josef Waltl
  • Joachim Henkel
  • Carliss Y. Baldwin
Conference paper

DOI: 10.1007/978-3-642-30746-1_8

Volume 114 of the book series Lecture Notes in Business Information Processing (LNBIP)
Cite this paper as:
Waltl J., Henkel J., Baldwin C.Y. (2012) IP Modularity in Software Ecosystems: How SugarCRM’s IP and Business Model Shape Its Product Architecture. In: Cusumano M.A., Iyer B., Venkatraman N. (eds) Software Business. ICSOB 2012. Lecture Notes in Business Information Processing, vol 114. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg

Abstract

We provide a case study of the concept of “IP modularity,” analyzing the case of SugarCRM. The modular architecture of this platform software is aligned with its intellectual property structure in such a way that the firm can derive, from the same code tree, an open source community version and a proprietary version. The software’s IP modular structure also facilitates the development of complements by distributed and anonymous complementors and simplifies downstream customizations, thus enhancing the platform’s attractiveness. We find that SugarCRM implements IP modularity on three different levels of the architectural hierarchy, in some cases down to the source code level. Our study thus extends the concept of IP modularity to comprise the notion of hierarchy levels.

Keywords

Intellectual Property Modularity Platforms Software Ecosystems 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Josef Waltl
    • 1
  • Joachim Henkel
    • 1
  • Carliss Y. Baldwin
    • 2
  1. 1.TUM School of ManagementTechnische Universität MünchenMunichGermany
  2. 2.Harvard Business SchoolBostonUSA