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The Tale Of Minnows And Sharks
Authored by: Sean  

An ancient proverb, which is rather inspiring, states, “A journey of a 1000 miles must begin with a single step.” Every great business that you see around you today had a rather small beginning. Whether it is an Apple, a Sony or a Walmart, they all started with an individual thinking about changing the way business is done. And more importantly, an individual with a massive dream. On the other hand, there are also personalities who have extraordinary dreams and they put their ideas into a business. Right now, there are plenty of small-scale businesses that are holding their own when it comes to competition from big names. In an ocean which is so extraordinarily dynamic, how do the minnows survive against the big sharks?

 

Image Source – https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/5/56/White_shark.jpg

 

Do they survive? Do they get acquired/taken over by the big names? Do customers all over the world prefer to stay local and patronize the minnows? Or do they succumb to the glitz and glamour that a big name can provide? Take the world of wristwatches. Right now, the industry is abuzz with the introduction of the Apple smart watch.

 

Image Source – https://pixabay.com/static/uploads/photo/2015/11/11/19/17/apple-1039117_960_720.jpg

 

Wearable technology has become a thing of true desire when one talks about the Apple smart watch. Apple seems to have thrown in its massive power in the production of this watch.

 

Image Source – https://pixabay.com/static/uploads/photo/2015/11/07/21/48/iphone-1032783_960_720.jpg

 

Apple loves to play its cloak and dagger games and this is why there are so many visualizations of the iWatch! While plenty of stuff being written about the Apple iWatch is hearsay, it does make sense because Apple never does things by halves! So indeed, believing that the company deployed more than 100 designers to create the watch is par for the course. Apple has also hired Paul Deneve. You may know him as the CEO of Yves Saint Laurent.

At the opposite end of the spectrum is a Pebble watch.

 

 

This watch is the embodiment of Eric Migicovsky’s ideas. For all practical purposes, he seems to be the only one who worked on creating a fabulous smart watch. There was no massive funding for this smart watch. In fact, Migicovsky turned to the crowd funding mode, via Kickstarter to raise $10,266,844 for the project.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Video Source - https://youtu.be/18ZlL8_CInU

 

If you expand the scope of small versus big to the retail sector, then probably one of the biggest battles being fought in this space is the local stores or small-time sellers versus Wal-Mart. In many parts of the world, there is massive resistance to the entry of Wal-Mart because people feel that this giant will simply crush the local shops.

Questions such as “has Wal-Mart sounded the death knell for mom-and-pop stores everywhere” and “do Wal-Mart’s superstores displace small businesses?” are asked constantly. It is not easy to address the issue of how small businesses can flourish against big names such as Apple and Wal-Mart. But one thing for sure, small businesses have to harness innovation and personalization in order to continue to be relevant. Small companies can also do well when they use technology wisely. Pebble is a market leader according to an estimate by Canalys, the analyst firm. There are quite a few people around the world who will make it a point to patronize small businesses because of the connect that they have with these entities.

 

And that is where a minnow will always find favor over a huge shark!

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