Blog >
Business Models

Business Models

Jessica Graf shares an article and report supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation on an initiative launched in Africa that was developed to improve the nutritional status of lower-income consumers by creating a new business model that would also be sustainable for the company. For several decades, pioneer companies, entrepreneurs and non-profit organizations have attempted to build women networks selling “beneficial” products in their communities, with some level of success. However, the execution of women sales networks has…
Luca Ottinetti shares a post on a business model design that competes to win.  Business model design is a fundamental driver of shareholder value creation. It is the foundation for company performance upon which all actions follow. Its primacy cannot be overstated, yet most companies haven’t fully internalized how to compete through business models. WHY IT MATTERS A clear indication of the importance of business model design (BMD) is the company’s ability to retain its market position. The lifespan of…
Jim Klass shares a PDF on rethinking the food service model to reduce friction. The essential point to grasp is that in dealing with capitalism we are dealing with an evolutionary process… At the heart of capitalism is creative destruction. …Situations emerge in the process of creative destruction in which many firms may have to perish that nevertheless would be able to live on vigorously and usefully if they could weather a particular storm.” —Joseph A. Schumpeter Overview The Foodservice…
Barry Horwitz explains how applying war games to business is a useful exercise and effective planning tool.  “You’ve probably heard the term: ‘War games.’ Long used in a military context to plan for future conflicts, when applied in a business setting, the phrase refers to a group exercise in which participants try to anticipate the possible moves of a competitor by pretending to “play for the other side.” I have used this technique many times, across a range of clients…
Kaihan Krippendorff takes a look at the history of the music industry to demonstrate how Spotify excels at delivering customers what they want when they want it.  In 2006, a pair of Swedish entrepreneurs banded together to fight an ongoing problem: Piracy in the music industry was costing artists, retailers, and record companies billions of dollars in lost sales. Customers who had previously gone to CD or record stores to purchase music were now evading legislation to download songs for…
  A crisis often kickstarts innovation in technology and shifts in culture. As working from home options become a more normal structure, how will this impact performance and growth? Kaihan Krippendorff takes a look at the company culture of Netflix to explore the impact of no rules rules. When we think about culture and responsibility in the workplace, companies generally fall into one of two categories. Some seek to monitor their employees and keep them in a structured order by…
  Kaihan Krippendorff shares a post that explains why the trend toward platform and digital requires an entirely new mindset around how you serve your customers. Last week’s trend piece focused on Community Coordination — companies that create a platform for users to communicate and coordinate are better prepared for a future where consumers are using these platforms to connect quickly and make their voices heard. This trend toward coordinating the uncoordinated has been growing for many years and pervades…
  Stephen Wunker has published an article on costovation and how it is creating an agricultural revolution in Africa.  In Africa, there is a product which smallholder farms urgently need, yet which few understand or think they can afford: insurance. Droughts, pests, floods, and other natural maladies can devastate a crop for the year and put farmers – as well as whole communities – at great risk of extreme hardship. Yet, with few exceptions, the idea of paying a premium…
Umbrex is pleased to welcome Markus Gremmel. Markus runs his independent consulting and investment firm with focus on sales, marketing, sales partnerships, and development of business models. Markus has a deep industry expertise in cards, payments, consumer lending, and financial services in general, emanating from a variety of senior roles in banking: e.g., Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) at BAWAG Group, non-executive board member of a leading card issuer and ATM operator, board member of a niche bank in debt capital…
  Robbie Baxter interviews Scott Mordell the CEO of the Young Presidents Organization (YPO). They discuss the YPO processes and membership.   “Scott Mordell was CEO of the Young Presidents Organization, or YPO, from 2011 through 2020. What is fascinating about YPO is how intensely engaged their community is. Members will move mountains to make sure they can attend their regular meetings, despite the fact that they’re among the busiest people in the world. Many of them even qualify as…
  Jennifer Hartz shares an overview of her company’s expertise. Most specifically, its customized approach and how it helps clients. 20+ years ago, I founded Corporate Hartz LLC to combine my educational background, corporate consulting experience, and passion for leaving the world a better place. Our broad and deep expertise and customized approach efficiently delivers significant meaningful results for companies and their stakeholders.   3 Lines of Business: this Hartz & Minds issue is for Businesses and Hybrid Companies 1) Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) &…
  Jason George shares a post that explores the Harvard Business School’s case method of teaching; and how this experimental approach in the construction of their classrooms became a model for many industries to follow.  Harvard Business School’s campus is an extreme outlier, even when compared to those of peer institutions with similar histories. Situated on the Charles River across from the main buildings of its parent university, the self-contained layout was originally conceived in the 1920s. At the time…
  Barry Horwitz shares a post to help you define and improve your business model.  According to Mark Johnson, co-founder of Innosight, a business model is simply this: “The way a business creates and delivers value for a customer while also capturing value for itself in a repeatable way.” It’s a straightforward concept, but important enough that academics and consultants alike talk about it frequently. For example, in my work with entrepreneurs — both established and “would-be” (i.e., students at…
  Robbie Kellman Baxter shares a tale from the trenches of subscription-based business success stories. In this episode, how a subscription business can become successful by focusing on subscriber outcomes.  Robbie Baxter: How did you come to run Instant Ink? Looking back, would you say it was inevitable? Or are you surprised at where you’ve ended up? Anthony Napolitano: Well, I’m thrilled to where I ended up. I can’t say it was fully planned and chartered for sure. I think…
  Robbie Kellman Baxter shares her latest article with expert insights on the subscription-based business model. This week, she discusses the disruption to the manufacturing industry and three mindset shifts leaders will need to make during the coming year.  Whether you’re a B2B manufacturer or a supplier to the industry, it’s time to rethink your entire relationship with your customers. Companies like Dollar Shave Club and Birch Box let consumers enjoy cost savings, convenience and the fun discovery. And Peloton…
  Using the company Hoowaki as an example, David Summa shares an article that illustrates how business model innovations can drive new revenue streams. In my last post, I wrote about business model innovations and how it can drive new revenue streams, especially in times of changing economic and cultural landscapes or declining performance. To help illustrate this point, I’d like to talk about a recent success with Hoowaki. Hoowaki is a materials science company in South Carolina that for…
  Supriya Prakash Sen shares an article on the issue of consumerism and waste generation within the current capitalist-driven economy; the article also outlines steps that can be taken to improve sustainability.  Looking at the stock market’s valuation of some of the world’s top brands- (see the below graphic from visualcapitalist.com) already, there is a distinct valuation difference between those brands that are promoting dematerialized (virtual) products and services vis a vis those with physical products. Even for the latter…
  With COVID-19 still plaguing the globe and the threat of a second wave looming, Kaihan Krippendorff has customized a strategy to address, prepare for, and build a strategy for the future. We are dealing with unprecedented change invoked by the COVID-19 pandemic. What we need more than ever is a sense of hope. So, we’ve taken The Outthinker Process – a strategic process that helps business leaders step outside of conventional thinking to redesign their business models and strategies…
  Paul Millerd’s latest newsletter explores four questions surrounding the state of work, schools, and creativity and shares unexpected thoughts on the future of work. The US has lost 38 million jobs. Some of those may come back. Many will not. Going into 2021, the US will likely have the highest unemployment rate in the last 100 years. I’ve written quite a bit about the fragile labor economy and believe the gaps I’ve written about have become more visible than…
  Shane Heywood takes a look at how the Direct to Consumer business model could have meaningful implications for social enterprises.  My earliest shaving experience was around the age of 13. After 10 minutes, reeling from irritation everywhere, and minimal hair in the sink, I also felt slightly cheated by how much I had spent on the razor. Apparently, that feeling has helped to lead to a $1 Bn USD deal. Across some consumer-facing industries, from shaving cream to mattresses…
  Mike Cox answers a question that is close to the heart of every business owner and entrepreneur who may be considering bringing new people into the business, “How much equity should I give a new hire.”   This question greys the hair of every business owner and entrepreneur. After all owners bear the burden of risk regardless of how they answer that question and the more that they choose to let go of equity, the less they feel like…
Luca Ottinetti’s company blog shares case studies that reveal how Intel and SpaceX successfully launched new products, and what went wrong with Nokia and Swissair’s business model innovations.   Entering a new market with new products that target new customers requires a new business model. It is a powerful strategic initiative that changes the rules of competition. It also represents a challenge with odds of success at roughly 30%, but ultimately – when done right – it rewards winners with…
Subscription businesses were a big deal in 2019, so what’s the forecast for 2020? Robbie Kellman Baxter shares her expertise on what lies ahead.  I’m no fortune teller, but something about the beginning of a new year and a new decade makes me want to start spouting predictions. Actually, this isn’t the first time I have taken a crack at predictions. The final chapter of my new book THE FOREVER TRANSACTION is all about the future of subscription and membership…
Robbie Baxter explains why companies need to prioritize their mission over their products to take advantage of new technologies and services and build a new kind of relationship with today’s–and tomorrow’s–members. As association leaders, many of you are Membership Pioneers. Membership is something you probably have been thinking about for years. But in the last 10 years, membership has reinvented nearly every industry. Companies like LinkedIn, Amazon and Salesforce have created forever transactions of their own with their customers by using many…