The paper explores several dimensions of Danish industry’s innovative performance with respect to the paradigm of the fifth generation innovation model that was suggested by Rothwell [Int. Market. Rev. 11 (1994) 7]. These dimensions include a general status of innovativeness in Danish companies, a look at time and cost trade-off, the fifth innovation generation’s related performance and possible congruence between the fifth generation’s factors and motives for their implementation. The source of data is an existing survey ‘The Danish industry—Present and Future’. Results indicate that Danish manufacturing companies demonstrate an innovative performance close to the fourth generation of innovation, which is slightly different than it is perceived publicly.