Even to a casual observer, it’s clear the world’s economy is quickly changing. A company’s average tenure on the S&P 500 has gone from 60 years in the 1950’s to less than 20 years today, with the average tenure reducing at an accelerating pace. The five most valuable companies in the world are now tech companies whose goods are primarily digital rather than physical.
Today’s leading businesses have two things in common – they’re building software-based intellectual property, and they release software often. Innovators like Amazon release 50 million times a year to production, for example. Quick releases are key to innovation, as they allow for rapid iteration of new business models and new product features. When you have to build a factory, it takes many years adopt to market changes.
Retail has been especially impacted by technology, with many calling the past few years the “Retail Apocalypse.” More than 12,000 physical stores in the U.S. are expected to close in 2018 and 50% of U.S. malls are expected to close by 2023. Pockets of retail are thriving, but many retailers face extinction if they don’t change. Retail uniquely is impacted by three major forces all converging at the same time. Let’s explore each.
(image by vladstudio.com)