In recent years, organizations in the private sector have started making part of their data available to the public free of charge. The phenomenon, known as open data and so far mostly embraced by governmental institutions, creates an opportunity for companies to increase corporate transparency and foster outside innovation. However, it contradicts the notion of maximizing profits by directly monetizing data assets and requires the dedication of internal resources to what are currently unknown benefits. We conduct a multiple case study to develop an understanding of how organizations approach the implementation of an open data strategy. Our qualitative explorative study analyses the results through the lens of organizational change theory. We find that open data requires substantial organizational change and derive six propositions for designing this transition. This study therefore contributes to initial theory building and lays the foundation for future empirical research. Moreover, it provides insights for organizations on how open data initiatives are implemented and offers guidance to practitioners that aim to get open data strategies under way.