The benefits of being big are shrinking

Pumpkin-750x300Centre for the Edge AU is looking at how long-term trends are changing the composition of the business landscape: the change in the mix of large verses small firms, and how they relate to each other.

The work is developing nicely, but we’re still a long way from putting something formal out. However, one conversation (between Richard Miller and myself) was worth blogging about, which is the dynamic between a long-term trends for consolidation (markets becoming increasingly dominated by a smaller number of larger firms) and one of fragmentation (large markets breaking into many smaller, niche, markets). The result is over on the Deloitte Strategy blog as Market trends: The benefits of being big are shrinking. I even managed to coin a nice visual image that I think sums the post up nicely:

It’s as if our efforts to rip operational costs out of business have incrementally worked their way from left to right across the value chain – from sourcing through to marketing and distribution – only to bounce off the customer and start working their way back, from right to left, fragmenting the business landscape in the process.

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