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The Collaborative Economy
Altimeter Research Theme: Digital Economies

Executive Summary

The Next Phase of Social Business Is the Collaborative Economy.
Social technologies radically disrupted communications, marketing, and customer care. With these same technologies, customers now buy products once and share them with each other. Beyond business functions, the Collaborative Economy impacts core business models.

Customers Are Sharing Goods and Services — Redefining the Buyer-Seller Relationship.
Every car-sharing vehicle reduces car ownership by 9-13 vehicles; a revenue loss of at least $270,000 to an average auto manufacturer.1 The cascading impact to the ecosystem has far-reaching impacts to auto loans, car insurance, fuel, auto parts, and other services.2 For corporations, the direct impact is revenue loss that results from customers sharing products and services with each other.

Innovative Companies Are Already Moving Into Collaborative Economy.
Some companies have joined this movement. For instance, Toyota rents cars from dealership lots, and Patagonia partnered with eBay to encourage customers to buy and sell its used products. NBC has partnered with Yerdle, a startup founded by former Walmart executives to foster peer-to-peer sharing. This movement impacts every industry.

Adopt the Collaborative Economy Value Chain.
Companies risk becoming disintermediated by customers who connect with each other. The Collaborative Economy Value Chain illustrates how companies can rethink their business models by becoming a Company-as-a-Service, Motivating a Marketplace, or Providing a Platform. The forward-looking company employs one model; the most advanced companies employ all three, with the corporation at the center.



 
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