T H E D I G I TA L T R AN S FORMAT I ON C HA SM
A little more than 10 years ago, a startup called Airbnb listed its first rooms and took its first bookings. Four years later, 10 mil- lion people had stayed at an Airbnb-listed property. By 2019, the company has hosted more than 500 million guests from properties in over 191 countries 1 . Airbnb is now worth $35 billion 2 —more than the Marriott group, and more than twice as much as Hilton Worldwide. That a company can go from zero to mainstream almost overnight is both awe-inspiring and scary. But such is the reality today. As the adoption of digital technologies speeds up, so will the rate of disruption. And Airbnb is not alone. Every industry, from automotive to retail—and even banking—are being disrupted by tech-native companies. Years ago, the appropriate response might have been to defend market share or focus on a niche, but this strategy was only effective against traditional competitors. Today, however, a retailer competes with both the store down the road as well as an e-commerce giant on the other side of the globe. Most large enterprises have a vision for a digital future, but the journey to get there is a difficult one to map. Technology is turning many business conventions on their heads. Not true in the digital age. Tech-native competitors can offer the better prices, fastest service, and wider selections due to aggressive adoption of digital technologies. The onus is now on IT leaders to keep pace with the fast-growing needs of a company. Many large enterprises have a vision of for a digital future, but the journey to get there is a difficult one to map. And failure to adopt the right technologies in time will cost the company its competitive advantage.
1 “Airbnb Fast Facts”. Airbnb. https://news.airbnb.com/fast-facts/ 2 https://www.barrons.com/articles/ airbnb-will-go-public-2020 ipo- 51568908485
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