Is the Crowd a Disruption or an Opportunity for Large Companies?

Many are excited about the new collaborative economy, where people use common technologies to get what they need from each other. This has created disruptions for some industries, but overall, holds much business opportunity for progressive companies. Progressive companies can glean greater loyalty through crowdfunding, turn to the crowd for new co-innovation and launch their own sharing programmes to expand how they serve their customers new desires. Companies who ignore this trend are likely to suffer from disruption, but those that lean in can benefit from using the crowd to their advantage. In the next section, I’ll share examples of what the crowd is doing, and how large companies are responding to integrate the crowd into their strategy. Image from … Continue readingIs the Crowd a Disruption or an Opportunity for Large Companies?

3D Printing Business Models Spell Ecosystem Change

Above: MakerBot 3-D printer from MakerBot Flickr account. This blog is focused on the relationship between large companies and their communities (customers, partners, and more) as it relates to new technologies. Emerging markets generate a desire for large companies to integrate new technologies to scope out new business models, scenarios and plans. Within this context I propose four major scenarios for large companies to offer 3D printing and scanning technologies within their business ecosystem. New business models are emerging, transforming retailers into manufacturers and service providers, offering customized products at scale, and reconfiguring supply chain and logistics into new business entities heretofore unseen and into others we’ve yet to see.  As a primer, before you read on, be sure to read the … Continue reading3D Printing Business Models Spell Ecosystem Change

2014 Collaborative Economy Predictions on NBC (video)

Above:  The embedded video player will allow you to play the short, 8 minute clip from my interview in the “hot seat” on NBC. Happy New Year all, it’s great to ring in the new year, right after the Dec 10th launch of my new company, Crowd Companies.   To kick start the new year, NBC asked me to go to their Silicon Valley TV studio for the Press:Here show hosted by Scott McGrew to give three predictions for 2014 around the collaborative economy. Here’s what I told them, which you can also watch above: Uber will start to threaten Amazon, as they can deliver goods at local level. Uber can deliver at a local level, faster than 3-day shipping from an … Continue reading2014 Collaborative Economy Predictions on NBC (video)

What 3D Printing Means to Corporations

3D design by Virtox, Dutch 3D printer designer, featured on Thingiverse. There’s no shortage of press and media attention focused on 3D printing, ranging from manufacturing metal guns to restoration of human facial parts or jet engine parts to Victoria’s Secret angel wings.  Beyond the press coverage, there is a significant, unanswered question that needs to be answered:  What does this mean for traditional corporate business models? [For corporations, 3D printing shifts products from standardized, scheduled, & at scale to customized, on-demand, & local] I’ve taken classes at TechShop on 3D printing, visited the Shapeways factory, and own a few 3D printed goods (with more coming).  I’m stunned by the many materials that can be printed, including steel, gold, chocolate, wood, proteins, … Continue readingWhat 3D Printing Means to Corporations

The Five Ways Companies Can Leverage 3D Printing –and Avoid Disruption

Above photo: Showcase collection of intricate and moveable 3D Printed goods in acrylic, stainless steel. Designs by famed Dutch designer, Virtox, using Shapeways, 3-D printing-as-a-service and marketplace of designers. One Liner:  The crowd is becoming like a company in the Maker Movement. 3D printing rapidly accelerates it.  Find your company’s place in the ecosystem with these five business models. This is the next phase of social business. Just as many people who have published blogs, videos, and pictures have become media companies, we’re now seeing people make physical things and personally become like traditional companies.  In both phases, the rules are the same:  those who stand in the way will get pushed aside.  Those who enable, will benefit.  Welcome to the Maker Movement, … Continue readingThe Five Ways Companies Can Leverage 3D Printing –and Avoid Disruption

Shapeways Delivers 3D Printing as a Service, Reshaping Business Processes

An assortment of 3D printed items, accompanied by Duann Scott (left), myself (center), and Savannah, (right) at the Shapeways 3D “Factory of the Future” in Queens, NYC. Behind us are rows of high-end 3D printers, polishing machines, designers, QA teams, and operations experts.  Trying to configure, calibrate, and properly print a 3D object is a clunky experience. Fortunately, there are services that enable this: Meet Shapeways, a 3D factory available now for you. In my humble opinion, I’ve found that 3D printers for consumers need some time to mature.  I’ve taken a class at TechShop to learn that the level of skill requires a hobbyist and tinkering capability. It’s not just “Press print.”  To meet this need, and to print using high … Continue readingShapeways Delivers 3D Printing as a Service, Reshaping Business Processes