Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to investigate how intangibles are identified by managerial staff of Bulgarian entrepreneurial firms. This is achieved by analysing corporate policies and the day-to-day intangibles management practices in a small number of companies in the context of those companies’ overall performance. Design/methodology/approach – Empirical research based on three case studies. This approach has been chosen since it provides the opportunity to use a range of analytical methods so as to illuminate the issues from different angles. The companies were selected on the basis of the definition of Timmons and Spinelli (2007) of entrepreneurial firms. Findings – This exploratory research provides evidence about identification of and good practices relating to the successful management of intangibles in Bulgarian entrepreneurial firms. It shows that though not explicitly recognised, intangibles are high on the management agenda and in their day-to-day practice. Research limitations/implications – The research is based on three case studies and is focused on specific aspects of management in the particular case of entrepreneurial companies, and these factors limit the possibilities for generalisation. Originality/value – The paper sheds new light on how intangibles are identified and managed in the context of the daily practice of entrepreneurial firms. Data analyses provide evidence that intangibles are identified through human capital, structural capital and relational capital and well-being. Further, in entrepreneurial firms, recruitment and retention decisions are often based more on individuals’ potential and willingness for further personal development than on their current abilities. © Emerald Group Publishing Limited.
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