Svenja Falk platforms

Platforms – how SMEs & startups can take part in the future competition of ecosystems (Svenja Falk)

Platforms are controlling the markets. 7 out of the 10 most valued companies in the world are platform companies. For Svenja Falk, Managing Director at Accenture Research, future economic competition will be held between ecosystems and not individual companies. In this interview Svenja explains how SMEs and start-ups can play a role in this competition.

It’s not only the big players who can use the power of platforms to control the market. SMEs and startups as well can and should participate in digital ecosystems. At #ada18 in Berlin in October  you can profit from Svenja Falk’s expertise in platformication and her talk Beyond Silicon Valley – the future of the platform economy.

Interview with Svenja Falk (accenture)

Svenja, platforms are called the biggest business model of the digital economy. Why?

Svenja Falk: Value creation is more and more based on digital services orchestrated via platforms. If you look at the 10 most valued companies in the world, 10 of them are platform companies, 10 years ago it was only one.  Today, you are controlling the market through controlling the customer interface between demand and supply platforms – without controlling or owning the products or services. Monopolies emerge.

What are the biggest misconceptions about platforms you encounter in your job?

Svenja Falk: There is a huge difference between platforms in the B2C versus the B2B space. The “Winner takes it all” effect that we are seeing in B2C does not necessarily apply to B2B due to the importance of domain specific knowledge.

What is more important for a platform? The tech or the idea?

Svenja Falk: Technology is an enabler. Without the right business model and adaptation of the organization value creation is limited.

Does every enterprise now have to think about becoming a platform? Or is there an option for small and middle enterprises to be part of platformication?

Svenja Falk: Competition is significantly changing due to platforms and digital business models. From my perspective, digital innovation ecosystems will compete in the future, not individual companies. This provides huge opportunities for SMEs and start-ups to integrate their specific know how into the ecosystem. They do not necessarily have to build and run a platform themselves.

And which role in a company should be the platformication lead?

Svenja Falk: The CEO. Clearly, platforms are changing the nature of the firm.

Svenja Falk is responsible for managing Accenture Research teams in the public sector and health care as well as the geographic teams in 23 countries. She designs and executes global strategies and research programs in areas such as future of work, digital transformation and public management. Svenja is a member of advisory forums such as the Platform Industrie 4.0 to develop actionable policy recommendations for Governments. Svenja is on the Board of the Accenture Foundation Germany and responsible for its program “Skills to Succeed”. She is a honorary professor at the Justus-Liebig Universität Giessen.

Advertorial disclosure: Accenture is a premium partner of Ada Lovelace Festival 2018.