Question : In the past, you consulted with folks at large companies, such as Walmart, and came away not so convinced of their actual ability to pursue sustainability. If we’re looking to create a better version of capitalism, what do you think should be done with publicly traded companies?
“Platforms have become one of the most important business models of the 21st century. Five of the six most valuable firms in the world are built around these types of platforms. However, a study of 252 platform companies showed that 209 of them failed. The most common mistakes into four categories:
(1) mispricing on one side of the market,
(2) failure to develop trust with users and partners,
(3) prematurely dismissing the competition, and
(4) entering too late.
Researchers have extensively studied pricing decisions, yet managers still get them wrong. A platform often requires underwriting one side of the market to encourage the other side to participate. But knowing which side should get charged and which side should get subsidized may be the single most important strategic decision for any platform.”
Interesting what each of us takes away when we read articles. The quote above is from Kyle Westaway – and indeed nothing wrong with his takeaway. But there is more – and even the HBR article doesn’t really get down to it.
”The ride-sharing drivers earn just $3.37 per hour on average, according to an MIT study.
I have said for a long time that the same people who object to treatment of workers in remote countries making phones, garments et al … are generally the self same people who love the convenience of ‘their’ Uber.
Case In Point … disasters.
We seem to worry more about issues that are close to home far more than remote ones … 2 dead in storm floods in the next state over is so much more worrying than 200 dead in Pakistan floods … yet exploitation of those people in Pakistan by the garment industry hits the news cycle regularly … exploitation of our own countrymen in the so called ‘sharing economy’ … that we don’t hear about too much at all.