The Renaissance Innovator

Thoughts, examples and updates on the Renaissance Innovation Method

Posts from the “Others” Category

The Business Model Journey at Amazon

Posted on November 17, 2013


Amazon.com is in the headlines again because it started Sunday package deliveries in several large cities. This offering follows the company’s recent strategic decision to offer same day delivery to most US addresses.  As a part of this strategy, the company is drastically increasing the number of warehouses all around the US. As we discussed in our forthcoming book,  and this recent post on the HBR bloggers network. Amazon is in a class of its own when it comes to thinking about its business model. We are all accustomed to new offerings from Amazon.com: in fact, since its inception in 1995, Amazon has fundamentally changed its business model several times.  At its inception, Amazon’s operation was organized around a “sell all, carry few” business…

At Last, a New Business Model for Tesla

Posted on July 3, 2013


Two weeks back,  Tesla Motors, the company behind the Tesla Model S, arguably the most promising all-electric challenger to the century-long domination of fossil-fuel cars, announced an innovative switching station based infrastructure that would bring its flagship product one step closer to being the first all-electric no-compromises luxury sedan. We were delighted to hear of this latest move by Tesla. Almost four months back, on this blog, we called for Tesla to complement the path-breaking technology in the Model S sedan with an innovative business model to match (Tesla’s Model S: Technology Outruns the Business Model). The proposed battery-swap system will allow a driver to replace a depleted battery with a fully charged battery in less than 90 seconds — faster than filling up a tank of gas…

A Business Model for Bangladesh

Posted on May 21, 2013


As we discuss in our recent blog post on HBR Blog Network, the death of over 800 people in the collapse of Rana Plaza, a building with garment factories in Bangladesh, spurred widespread outrage over working conditions in offshore factories. In the search for blame, many commentators point to the absence of building codes, lack of workplace safety rules, and the greed of US corporations.  Many of the solutions proposed are around paying people more to manufacture in the USA. But however well intentioned the ideas are, this is not the best use of one of the most productive workforces in the world. The true solution, we think, lies in understanding the changed nature of modern supply chains and identifying new business models better…

Liberate Your Employees and Recharge your Business Model

Posted on March 28, 2013


As we discussed in our recent blog post on HBR Blogging Network, it finally seems that the uproar over Marissa Meyer’s diktat banning flexible work policies at Yahoo is dying down.  While good arguments were made on both sides of the issue, what got lost in the charged debate was the potential for evolving traditional business models through changing the employee-employer relationship. Our research on identifying replicable templates for business model innovation shows that innovating how a company engages with its workforce is an often overlooked way of increasing business model performance. The basic structure of the firm-employee relationship has not changed much over the last 50 years.  Relying on a forecast of organizational needs, firms select the nature and number of employees, who are…

Tesla’s Model S: Technology Outruns the Business Model

Posted on February 26, 2013


In our recent blog post on HBR blogging network we discussed the Tesla Model S, which is arguably the most promising all-electric contender for a slice of the luxury sedan market, but was panned recently by New York Times reporter John Broder, who finished his test-drive on the back of a flatbed truck. Elon Musk, co-founder of Tesla Motors, was quick to respond with accusations that the test was not performed under fair conditions. Whatever the rights and wrongs of the dispute, though, one thing is clear: Tesla has some way to go before it can get motorists to buy into its vision of an all-electric no-compromises luxury sedan.

Outclassing Sourcing Champions

Posted on May 28, 2012


With  increasing  specialization,  technological complexity, and globalization, firms now buy a long list of products and services from many outside providers. In industries like automobiles, consumer electronics and retail, reliably sourcing a multitude of products from supply chain partners is the key to success. Li and Fung limited, one of the worlds fastest growing companies,  is fundamentally altering this  sourcing landscape and is simultaneously changing the game in these industries which rely deeply on sourcing. It is a company which owns no production, transportation or retail facilities, but by becoming the key link in  the sourcing  practices of some of the worlds best known companies like Gap, Benetton  and Walmart, has found a novel winning formula. So how has this firm created a multi-billion dollar business…

Generating New Business Opportunities

Posted on April 3, 2012


Over the last 2 weeks, I have been teaching a newly developed INSEAD MBA course  on Identifying New Business Opportunities (INBO).  The class is structured as a hands on  experiential workshop that combines three novel approaches to Innovation/Entrepreneurship: Business Model Innovation, Idea Tournaments and Lean Startups/Discovery Driven Planning. As regular readers of this blog know, Business Model Innovation is all about  identifying entrepreneurial opportunities via innovating the business models in existing competitive industries. Idea Tournaments is a process that leverages the wisdom of the crowd for selecting and developing amongst new business opportunities. Discovery-driven planning  philosophy prioritizes tasks to limit entrepreneurial risk. Taken together, these approaches are in contrast to the conventional serendipitous, solitary  process of innovation and it instead provides a systematic, risk-limiting pathway to realizing innovative outcomes.…