Critical Mass

Definition of 'Critical Mass'


A very important or crucial stage in a company's development, where the business activity acquires self-sustaining viability. When a company reaches critical mass, it is thought that they can remain viable without having to add any more investment.

Investopedia explains 'Critical Mass'


This term is derived from nuclear physics, where critical mass is defined as the smallest mass of material that can sustain a nuclear reaction at a constant level. When compared to the financial definition, we see the similarities – being self-sustaining is the goal.



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