My guest this week is Alex Moazed, the co-author of Modern Monopolies: What It Takes to Dominate the 21st Century Economy, which explores the platform business model (Uber, Airbnb, Github). Alex is also the founder and CEO of Applico, a company that he started in his dorm room that is since grown into a huge enterprise that helps startups and Fortune 500 innovate with platforms. Alex and I talk about history and future of businesses and different types of business models. There’s a lot in here for investors, entrepreneurs, and historians. Please enjoy!
If you like the podcast or the book, here are a few extra articles that I’ve enjoyed by Alex:
2:39 – (first question) – Exploring the history of business models from linear to platform.
5:46 – A look at the share of overall business platform companies have taken over
7:48 – The potential for platform businesses over the next 20 years
9:18 – Detailing the difference between a linear and a platform business
12:08 – Exploring transaction costs and core transactions across different business models
19:49 – Is the platform business model good for investors and VC’s since so many can get crushed when there’s a sole victor, or is it just for the founders and entrepreneurs.
24:35 – How the self-driving car is going to deliver more opportunity for consumer consumption
27:15 – Untapped supplies as the opportunity for new platforms and where we could see new openings
30:24 – How consolidated will things become across all platforms
33:16 – How do platform companies create a moat to keep others from replicating their business strategy
37:03 – Are there platform strategies that specifically don’t work
37:40 – Failed Color App
38:45 – Why complex systems typically don’t scale up and you should think small and easy to get started
40:02 – How the origin of so many larger companies started out small and localized, and why it makes investors more comfortable
41:37 – How Alibaba had to tweak their business model to accommodate the Chinese market
44:07 – Why are the modern monopolies better for consumers
47:52 – Exploring platforms that are asset heavy
49:00 – What do you look for as a VC to determine
52:05 – Alex’s take on whether a platform based company like Uber should be more asset heavy
54:31 – Exploring some lesser known platform businesses that Alex finds interesting
56:18 – If there is a demand in the secondary markets for a product, why don’t the primary suppliers simply raise their prices
57:03 – What Alex’s portfolio of platform-based businesses would look like
58:48 – A couple of most influential books Alex has read
59:38 – Zero to One: Notes on Startups, or How to Build the Future and other Peter Thiel books
59:53 – Looking at Applico, how it started and how it become so focused on the platform business model
1:03:56 – Most memorable day for Alex
1:05:13 – Kindest person to Alex in his life
1:06:10 – What platform opportunities could exist in the financial world
For more episodes go to InvestorFieldGuide.com/podcast.
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