Archivio per mese: Luglio, 2015

The disruptive power of Fintech in the Banking industry. An interview with Philippe Gelis*

Reading time: 6 minutes

22 Lug
Foto del profilo di Guia Beatrice Pirotti

by Guia Pirotti

SDA Professor of Strategic and Entrepreneurial Management

“We believe that it is time to make a change in the financial services industry. Technological innovation and efficiency are and will continue to be the vehicles for this change”, Philip Gelis, Kantox

Foto GelisTo Marc Andreessen’s famous statement, “software is eating the world,” Richard Branson, founder of the Virgin Group, added “and financial services are no exception”. The speed of technology and market changes are forcing financial services to adapt faster and more efficiently than ever before. Most financial services firms understand that digitization is part of their business. Large powerful corporations as well as “lean-and-mean” start-ups are entering the financial services industry. Industry reports estimate that over 4000 start-ups are ready for the market. Their goal is to revolutionize this conservative industry and gain significant market share.

Kantox is a Fintech company, founded in 2011. It offers a marketplace for SMEs to exchange currency, including peer-to-peer, enabling them to get a better exchange rate than the one offered by banks or traditional brokers. Kantox now serves more than 1.500 corporate clients, ranging from small businesses to mid-cap companies. The company employs 55 staff across its London and Barcelona offices.
In this interview, Philippe Gelis co-founder of Kantox, describes the main forces that potentially lead to what he calls "marketplace banking" - the worst case scenario or, in other words, the end of many banks that have not started to cooperate with Fintech start-ups yet.

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Beyond the handshake: pitfalls of international Joint Ventures

Reading time: 7 minutes

15 Lug
Foto del profilo di Olga Annushkina

by Olga Annushkina

SDA Professor of Strategic and Entrepreneurial Management

The need to rapidly grow on new markets is leading many firms to search for local partners and to form cross-border equity joint ventures. Among other entry modes to the foreign markets based on an equity investment, the joint ventures, at the first sight, possess many advantages: possibility to share risk and investment with the foreign partner, access to the local knowledge, distribution, partners and authorities via foreign partners' networks. In some countries forming a joint venture is requested by the local legislation and represents the only way for a company to enter the market. For example, 6,5 mln out of 22,2 millions of passenger cars sold in 2013 in China were produced by the international joint ventures formed before 2005 between Chinese automotive producers and main global brands.

The apparent ease of forming a joint ventures is leading many managers and entrepreneurs to undervalue the significance of the preparation phase to the joint venture formation. The sources of tensions and conflicts for the joint venture partners can be really many. In fact, the joint ventures are considered to be one of the most unstable entry modes to the foreign markets, and the uncertainty about the joint venture’s competitive performance seems to be just one of the many factors potentially hindering its success.

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Fixing Greece: why not treat it like a troubled subsidiary

Reading time: 5 minutes

09 Lug
Foto del profilo di Markus Venzin

by Markus Venzin

SDA Professor of Strategic and Entrepreneurial Management

What are the next steps now after the strong “ókhi” (no) vote of the Greek population against the last bail out offer from the creditors? The EU can’t let Greece fall by the wayside. There is so much more at stake than the cost of a bailout: Patients struggle without medicines and elderly citizens cry in front of closed banks because they can no longer access their pensions. Children are hit hard as services dry up. The EU cannot say "this is not our problem anymore."

To find a solution, let's take for a moment a management perspective, with Greece being a subsidiary, and the EU its parent company. How would the top management team of this multinational company handle the issue?

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Marchi monoprodotto: meglio soli che troppo accompagnati

Reading time: 6 minutes

02 Lug
Foto del profilo di Erica Corbellini

by Erica Corbellini

SDA Professor of Strategic and Entrepreneurial Management

Dopo anni di brand extension, di marchi stili di vita che vendono tutto – dagli abiti ai mobili, dai gioielli alle camere di hotel - sembra che nella moda stia tornando di moda un antico detto milanese: “Ofelè, fa el to mestè!

Sono, infatti, tornati prepotentemente alla ribalta i marchi cosiddetti specialisti, ovvero quelli monoprodotto e magari anche monodistribuzione.

Se lo sviluppo del retail, con la crescita esponenziale dei negozi diretti monomarca, ha spinto i marchi designer ad ampliare l’offerta in n categorie merceologiche, per veicolare un mondo di riferimento e massimizzare le opportunità di cross selling, ci sono aziende che sono rimaste focalizzate solo sul proprio core business; in qualche caso per la mancanza di alternative dovuta alle piccole dimensioni, più spesso per la sensazione di pancia dell’imprenditore.

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