B2B sharing economy, your opportunity or threat?

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opcje binarne godziny 13 mei 2013 Economist – The rise of the sharing economy
16 augustus 2014 In the sharing economy workers find both freedom and uncertainty
19 augustus 2014 – How can established organisations play to win in the sharing economy 

opções binárias infomoney The PWC article underlines that there are a couple of industries that didn’t see the sharing economy trend coming and suffered because of it. We all know the story of music, film and TV versus Napster and later peer-to-peer sharing. The music industry especially is still fighting to adapt to the huge changes while car companies show that there is also another way. Companies like GM, Avis, BMW or Daimler have each not waited for the challenge to come to them but each started or bought their own sharing service. What threats might develop in your B2B market, and, more importantly, what opportunities does it offer?

http://fiontar.ie/?v=bdswiss-legal bdswiss legal iqoptinos Sharing production capacity – There’s always either a lack or too much capacity, think of your organization’s machines that either run night and day or have a down time of 12 hours. Most companies will be forced to either downsize or expand, but why wouldn’t you take a moment to reflect on the question: “Why not share it with someone? Or even a competitor?”
opzioni demo Office space / desks – We have more office space than we know what to do with, and with an increasingly flexible labor market this will only get worse. Why wouldn’t you rent out the facilities you already have but aren’t using?
Employees and systems – Your organisation probably developed knowledge, systems or skills to allow for a certain process or quality. By applying this to other companies you can significantly improve your return on investment.
opcje binarne literatura Easier access to capital – The entry-barrier to your market used to be significant, but a much easier access to manufacturing tools like machinery and other capital through for example peer-to-peer lending initiatives it’s only getting easier to join your market and compete. The question to you is, what is your company’s actual sustainable competitive advantage and how can you leverage or improve on it?

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Annual Report Buma/Stemra

Recently, I completed the Annual Report project for dutch collective management organization Buma/Stemra. The resulting report looks amazing and makes me very proud. I wrote an more extensive blog on it over on De Merkelijkheid website, including some images.

Read it (in Dutch – sorry -) here!

Unilever CEO on the future of capitalism

Stunning article by Unilever’s CEO Paul Polman in McKinsey Quarterly detailing his vision of the future for both Unilever and businesses/capitalism. The article didn’t trigger me from the start, but as soon as he connects his analysis to Unilever’s behaviour I was hooked. The following sentence was responsible:

We actually had a ten-year period of no growth, and that forces you to make your numbers or you’re under pressure from your shareholders.

He then continues to connect shareholder pressure to short term thinking and the negative influence this has / had on a [his] company’s capital base. Their decision to change connected his views of the future to him leading the company, because by redefining themselves he was able to embed both sustainable and economic targets in Unilever’s core. He took an 8 percent hit in share price, but is now convinced that he successfully ‘removed enormous shackles from our organization’.

Very ambitious words and an article well-worth reading yourself. So GO! 

Rumour: YouTube acquiring game streaming service Twitch

Variety and The Wall Street Journal both report on Google/YouTube’s supposed acquisition of game streaming service Twitch. While Variety tells us the deal is done for $1 billion, The Wall Street Journal just reports Google’s intentions. Twitch would extend on YouTube’s large game audience, while Google’s ad sales will probably be more able to capitalize on the value of Twitch’s hardcore viewers. Before we start talking about the insanity of paying $1 billion, please consider that Twitch represented 1,35% of all downstream bandwidth in the US and according to Qwilt, Twitch has a 43,6% market share in streaming video. And it’s growing quickly.

Fun fact: Google’s share price increased by 1,6% when I write this, representing $5,6 billion of added value for its shareholders. Seems a positive response to me?

What makes this rumoured deal interesting to me is the apparent value of a smaller but hardcore gaming audience. For someone who has no experience or affinity with competitive or multi player gaming, it seems astounding that people spend 15 hours a week watching someone else play a video game. But for two generations of gamers, this is the most natural thing in the world. It just took technology a while to catch up with demand. And its not limited to South-Korea, Japan and China any more. Gamers from all continents travel to watch major tournaments and games. And in numbers that are far bigger than all but the most popular sports. Twitch facilitates this trend, but combines it with something that everyone is familiar with, being a fan.

To most people, it is obvious that people are fans of big musicians or movie stars. But when you favourite pastime is not music but games, doesn’t it make sense that the best or coolest gamers become your idols? Twitch allows people to actually join their idols while they practice, play matches or just hang out, and the get to interact! By combining the demand for watching major games and tournaments with people following or being fans of their idols, Twitch has stumbled (the original company was different) on what seemed a niche, but now turns out to be a major popular movement. Google has recognized this demand before, by acquiring stakes in major YouTube gaming channels for example.

It remains to be seen if the rumours are true, but I’m convinced that Twitch is a great opportunity to get in on something that others still call a niche.

Looking past your own limitations

Personally, I think that one of the main benefits of hiring outside advisers or consultants to help solve a problem is the fact that they will dedicate time to think about a solution. While they are not limited by your understanding of the market. Your experience, or mine for that matter, makes us rejects certain ideas or insights out of hand, while they might eventually lead to the actual solution! And this all works swimmingly up until the point where they have to sell you their solution.

I have to keep this in mind whenever we talk to clients and it is essential when presenting my thinking.