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Tag: strategy

Thoughts on Remora’s Curse

Remora’s curse takes place when startup attaches itself to a large platform in the attempt to solve the chicken-and-egg problem of getting users. The large platform then exercises its greater power to void the investments made by the startup into the platform, essentially causing more or less deadly delays and needs for re-design. The idea originates from Don Dodge who…

Startup due diligence: Some considerations

We had an interesting week with the Qatar Science and Technology Park (QSTP) that had invited several high-profile entrepreneurs from the US to evaluate the technologies of Qatar Computing Research Institute (QCRI). Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to attend all the sessions, but from what I saw I picked up a few pointers for due diligence work done by investors when…

The strategy algorithm

Introduction The purpose of the strategy algorithm is to present a simple, parsimonius, and proven method for successful creation of a corporate strategy. In corporations, the problems usually do not relate to lack of resources or options, but to complexity of having in fact too many choices. This can lead to illusion of superiority which is not a short-term problem…

Startups! Are you using a ‘mean’ or an ‘outlier’ as a reference point?

Introduction This post is about startup thinking. In my dissertation about startup dilemmas [1], I argued that startups can exhibit what I call as ‘reference point bias’. My evidence was emerging from the failure narratives of startup founders, where they reported having experienced this condition. The reference point bias is a false analogy where the founder compares their startup with…

Buying and selling complement bundles: When individual selling maximizes profit

Introduction When we were young, me and my brother used to buy and sell game consoles on Huuto.net (local eBay) and on various gamer discussion forums (Konsolifin BBS, for example). We didn’t have much money, so this was a great way to earn some cash — plus it taught us some useful business lessons along the years. What we would…

On complexity of explaining business failure

Introduction During the research period for my dissertation based on startup failures, I realized there are multiple layers of failure factors associated with any given company (or, in reverse, success factors). These are: generic business problems (e.g., cash-flow) individual-level problems (e.g., personal chemistry) company type problems (e.g., lack of funding for startups) business model problems (e.g., chicken-and-egg for platforms) Only…

Buying? How to determine the offer price for a website

Introduction A few years back I was considering of buying a website. In the end, I didn’t end up making the offer, largely because I couldn’t figure out how to calculate the offer price in a plausible way. Since then I’ve had a bit more experience in estimating figures in other contexts, as well as participating in some M&A discussions…

Defining SMQs: Strategic Marketing Questions

Introduction Too often, marketing is thought of being advertising and nothing more. However, already Levitt (1960) and Kotler (1970) established that marketing is a strategic priority. Many organizations, perhaps due to lack of marketers in their executive boards, have since forgotten this imperative. Another reason for decreased importance of marketing is due to marketing scholars pushing the idea that “everything…

Online ads: Forget tech, invest in creativity

Technology is not a long-lasting competitive advantage in SEM or other digital marketing – creativity is. This brief postĀ isĀ inspired by an article I read about different bid management platforms: “We combine data science to SEM, so you can target based on device, hour of day and NASDAQ development.” Yeah… but why would you do that? Spend your time thinking of…