Posts Tagged ‘business-model’

The Anticafé – From Russia with Nove(lty)

June 23, 2013 1 comment

20130623-161509.jpg In the heart of Paris, between Les Halles, Chatelet and Beaubourg Centre & Modern Art Museum, the Anticafé has recently opened. Given the number of cafés and restaurants around, some of them much better located to catch the eye of the many tourists, one may wonder about the viability of the project.

However, over the past decade, another new entrant, Starbucks, has been massively successful in Paris. In a market that is close to saturated, it would be difficult to argue that customers were drawn to Starbucks for lack of competition. In fact, Starbucks’ success was down to addressing the unmet needs of a segment of the population for a wider choice of high quality coffees, no alcohol, wifi, comfortable premises.

Where Starbucks innovated by changing the product offering and consumer experience, the Anticafé innovates by reversing the business model.

Read more…


“The world is moving from car ownership to car usership”

January 7, 2012 3 comments

A BBC News article provides a great insight into the revolution in the making that the car industry is about to go through. KPMG sums it up in their annual survey of the auomotive industry: “The world is moving from car ownership to car usership.” Arguably it will take longer than headline-grabbing statements suggest, not least because a large section of the consumer base still feels a strong emotional connection to the car they own or that they wish to own, but it is undeniably underway. Read more…

Don’t expect electric cars to substitute motor cars like-for-like

January 10, 2011 8 comments

Disruptive innovations often combine a changes on several dimensions: product, consumer experience, market segment, business model. The emblematic example remains the iPod, which would not have met its phenomenal success if it had not been associated with the business model change that iTunes brought to the music distribution industry. Like-for-like substitution of the old product by the new product, everything else being equal, is rarely a recipe for breakthrough innovation.

Take the electric car. The current focus of the auto industry is to increase battery autonomy and drastcially reduce recharging time in order to mimic the experience that the motorist currently gets when driving long distances refuelling along the way in a few minutes. This is almost certainly a lost cause! Read more…

With Autolib’ the electric BlueCar accelerates

December 17, 2010 2 comments

This week, life-long entrepreneur Vincent Bollore and his BlueCar won the contract to run the Autolib’ scheme of the city of Paris. The story so far is rich of innovation lessons.

Firstly, Autolib’ builds on the success of Velib’ and replicates its business model. Launched in 2007 in Paris and now replicated in many other European cities, Velib’ is a bike rental scheme that allows customers to pick a bike from one of the 1,200 points in Paris (one every 300 meters) and return it to another, without having to worry Read more…

Apple finds magic number to square the innovation circle

February 11, 2010 2 comments

In The Innovation Manual, David Midgley identifies three categories of challenge from which innovation can spring:  customer, technology, business model.

While examples of innovations in the technology category abound, they sometimes mask where the real innovation takes place. For example, the Wii is less about technology than about bringing to the video-game console a whole new range of customers (yoga beginners, grannies and families) that would not be your typical shoot-`em-up PS3 user. Likewise, despite being encapsulated in hi-tech products, Dell’s or Intel’s innovations were really about creating new ways of doing business. Read more…

Local free-ad website forces eBay to react

February 6, 2010 1 comment

Visit and next to the traditional ebay homepage building blocks you will see a map of France that you can browse regionally to find local ads from sellers close to your home. If you fancy something, you can then contact and meet the seller face-to-face to see the item and agree a price. This looks completely at odds with eBay’s core values of driving price transparency through online auctions and virtually connecting buyers and sellers across the global village.  Are ebay prototyping a new offering? Not quite. Actually, they are merely reacting to an unexpectedly powerful local threat. Read more…

Can BlueCar create an upset in the auto industry?

January 29, 2010 6 comments

The BlueCar that the Bollore Group (France) is about to launch will be the first electric car to run on the LMP (Lithium Metal Polymer) battery, which Bollore claims  will deliver superior autonomy and performance/weight benefits. While Bollore banks on this technological innovation to create a decisive competitive advantage, it is also conscious of being a new comer in the world of auto manufacturers, lacking brand recognition as well as distribution and aftermarket channels. Can Bollore create an upset? Here are a three readings of the situation. Read more…