The paper deals with the learning and innovation strategies of manufacturing companies in the economies of transformation. The point of departure is the development of a theoretical framework dealing innovation, knowledge and learning. The case is two manufacturing companies in Poland, the learning strategies of which are analysed and compared. These strategies have much in common and can be seen as quite successful. Some common problems also exist in relation to mismatches within and between the different knowledge bases. The differences are none the less interesting to consider. They are due to the different histories of the firms, differences in size, differences in relation to branch characteristics and differences in the insertion of the companies in the international division of labour.