This paper makes an empirical investigation into the influence of service innovativeness on the relationship between market orientation and innovative performance, first as a moderator with specified interaction effects, and secondly as a mediator in the path from market orientation to innovative performance. A sample of 169 new service development (NSD) projects in Chinese knowledge-intensive business service firms provides the data for an empirical test of these issues. The results indicate that service innovativeness does not play a moderating role in the relationship between market orientation and innovative performance, but a mediating role in this relationship. For NSD, project, innovativeness is only a temporary trait. The impact of market orientation is to spur innovativeness, which, in turn, affects innovative performance. © 2013 Copyright Taylor and Francis Group, LLC.