new ventures

Comments on Article- “Predictive analytics showing the shape of things to come”- The Australian June 25, 2013

The Australian newspaper had an interesting article on June 25, 2013 (http://tinyurl.com/mtah9ju) describing a number of successful predictive analytics applications, but also making the point that market penetration has been slow noting “… despite the numerous uses of predictive analytics, uptake is limited. According to Gartner, only 13 per cent of organisations report extensive use, while fewer than 3 per cent use prescriptive capabilities such as decision/mathematical modelling, simulation and optimisation market”. I posted brief summary comments today in response to the article and am pleased to share a complete copy of my comments:

Excellent article and clearly summarizes the challenges we face in educating management on how PA solutions can help companies improve performance and mitigate risk. I am pleased to share the following 3 observations. My comments are based on my position as CEO of InferX Corporation, a publicly traded predictive analytics company, and serving as adjunct professor teaching MBA strategy courses in the RH Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland.

No. 1   Analytics complements ‘traditional management’

Define your mission; assess external environment and competition using PEST, Porter’s 5 Forces model, other tools; assess internal resources and capabilities; develop detailed value chain analysis; analyze product life cycles; develop cost leader/differentiation global strategies based on product, market, competition and other factors. Analytics can make a major contribution throughout the ‘traditional’ management process. Yet market analysis shows about 85% of the total PA market today addresses the CRM sector. We need to view PA within the context of traditional management rather than a separate ‘big data/analytics’ sector. Integrating PA into traditional management processes is a challenge and the real opportunity with high upside

No. 2   Analytics costs more

True. When the e-commerce revolution emerged years ago, we had major push back from companies who preferred to continue to process orders manually, work with suppliers using ad hoc systems, and avoid ‘costly’ new systems implementation and industry standards. Systems costs did increase, but we created process and performance efficiencies that improved profitability and reduced risk. Today’s analytics solutions demand understanding ROI (and how to measure) and clearly communicating this message.

No. 3    “Analytics Drives Strategy and Strategy Drives Analytics”

Properly executed and integrated into a company’s management processes, I see great opportunity to use analytics to drive strategy, particularly in shaping new product and market innovations to increase ROI. Look at Capital One, an analytics driven competitor reportedly doing 300+ analytic scenarios daily to optimize financial offerings. Or Progressive, capturing motorcycle rider clients using analytics to define a segment with both claims and expense ratios providing strong returns. Amazon, Netflix and many others are using analytics to drive ‘micro-marketing segmentation’ which is where we are heading. And these new strategies create new analytics, enabling analytics- savvy companies such as Amazon to continue to excel.

Clearly all ‘analytics solutions’ providers, a term I prefer to emphasize PA’s broader role, have a challenge ahead- to educate clients, particularly at the ‘C’ level, on the opportunities embracing these solutions and the challenges they will face if they do not. Exciting times lie ahead in the global analytics solutions business for both solutions providers and all companies in all sectors.

Paul B. Silverman

President and CEO

InferX Corporation (OTC/PK: NFRX)

 

Paul B. Silverman writes about entrepreneurship, healthcare, analytics, and strategy management and serves as Advisor, Speaker, Educator, and Managing Partner of the Gemini Business Group, LLC, a new venture development firm, and author of “8 Building Blocks To Launch, Manage, And Grow A Successful Business.” He also serves as Adjunct Professor in the School of Business at George Mason University. See more at Paul B. Silverman Blog and sign up for Entrepreneurship Today! email updates to track latest new venture developments.

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New Predictive Analytics Application:Managing Your Wardrobe

I see the new ‘data intensity’ business model getting traction in new sectors and creative applications are emerging. Check out Stylitics, a new analytics platform to help manage your wardrobe.

http://mashable.com/2012/02/03/stylitics/

Note the reference to linking branding, couponing and so on. Most importantly, note the clear reference to Mint.com which I and many others view as a “flagship” data intensity business model.

Working with Sante Corporation, a new healthcare/analytics venture, it is clear to me providers can add high value to consumers through next generation analytics, carefully crafted to deliver insights to consumers and provide significant public benefit. The key points here – information aggregation and retrieval are yesterday’s business and commoditizing. Real opportunity now is going deeper, developing “data intensity” models, identifying the “unknown unknowns” providing real value, using powerful, creative predictive analytics to create sustainable value, and developing high value partnerships using electronic couponing, machine readable packaging and other new tools to deliver real value to consumers and create exponential shareholder value growth.

Given Mint.com’s successful business strategy, we can expect to see the data intensity business model trend accelerating. Very exciting developments are coming in this high potential market space.

Paul B. Silverman

Author: Worm on a Chopstick : Understanding Today’s Entrepreneurial Age: Directions, Strategies, Management Perspectives https://paulbsilverman.com/books/

Chief Executive Officer
Sante Corporation
Creating Next Generation Personalized, Simple Solutions to Improve Personal Health Management

Email:      paul@paulbsilverman.com
Linked in:  Paul Silverman
Twitter:     globalbizmentor

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Next Gen Ad Analytics:’Finding the Significant Few Among the Trivial Many’

The online advertising market is estimated at more than $30 billion in 2011  growing at 22 percent annually based on Internet Advertising Bureau (IAB) statistics. What we are seeing is explosive growth of predictive-analytics based tools and applications to drive the creation of new targeted ad services.

Look over today’s announcement  http://tinyurl.com/7tmmvsp that predictive analytics firm eBureau is spinning off its online advertising targeting business into a new company called TruSignal(TM) offering targeted advertising using proprietary predictive analytics and other tools.

All companies are interested in finding what we call the ‘significant few among the trivial many’ – I foresee many exciting developments and issues emerging here as we pursue this goal:

  • Expect other online advertising companies to create separate, specialized analytics driven service entities – analytics technology is driving this trend, is highly specialized, and this is moving very quickly
  • Different skills sets are needed as ad business moves to even more advanced analytics and visualization technologies- think of the implications for the online advertising sector looking for creative and ‘analytics-savvy’ candidates – new skill sets are needed now to secure and retain industry leadership
  • Expect to see more analytics spin-offs in other sectors- the same model is occurring in the health care, financial services and others

Always important to look at how major companies respond to these changes (think response of Barnes & Noble vs Borders to the e-book revolution). How does a major ad firm, well entrenched in traditional print, TV, radio media, address these new trends- most are obviously committed to the social media revolution but new predictive analytics tools are changing the rules of the game, helping ‘find the significant few among the trivial many’ in ways not possible today.

As these services accelerate, and they will, I expect to see major firms ramp up internal efforts to develop competitive analytics services organically. These powerful services are evolving very quickly and I expect to see major industry leaders seeking alliances with creative innovation leaders in the predictive analytics market.

 

Paul B. Silverman is a Lecturer in the Robert H. Smith School of Business in the University of Maryland. He also serves as CEO of Sante Corporation, an early stage personal health care management company, and Managing Partner of Gemini Business Group, a new venture development and advisory services firm. He can be reached at paul@paulbsilverman.com or via Twitter at @globalbizmentor

 

Paul B. Silverman writes about entrepreneurship, healthcare, analytics, and strategy management and serves as Advisor, Speaker, Educator, and Managing Partner of the Gemini Business Group, LLC, a new venture development firm, and author of “8 Building Blocks To Launch, Manage, And Grow A Successful Business.” He also serves as Adjunct Professor in the School of Business at George Mason University. See more at Paul B. Silverman Blog and sign up for Entrepreneurship Today! email updates to track latest new venture developments.

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Utilities Develop Smart Meters:Missing “Marketing 101”

Utilities are developing new monitoring and energy management technologies but are missing ‘Marketing 101’ basics. I posted following comments on Fast Company article http://www.fastcoexist.com/1678981/smart-meters-not-just-for-electricity-anymore#comments

Agree we need to educate the public about smart infrastructure, but we need to refocus our strategy and message here.

Today we take a ‘silo’ approach driven by utilities and what technology driven services they can deliver to the market. Water supply companies describe capabilities from managing real time supply and demand metrics, and creating new features to improve cost performance. Same for electric  utilities.

To secure  public support and  replicate the benefits many other countries have realized, I recommend a “Marketing 101″ approach to policymaking here, starting with the public consumer. First, define benefits we want to deliver, then define the functions and features needed to deliver these benefits. In my ‘Marketing 101’ model, technology is a enabler, a means to the end, to deliver benefits to end users. Remote meter reading and energy management are technical features, not benefits.

I am leading a new health care which will empower users to more effectively manage and track medications, vital signs and wellness using proprietary technology. While it is seductive to start with what I call real,  ‘gee-whiz’ technology, our winning strategy focuses 100% on what users need, want and how we use technology to create benefits to build a sustainable business. Lots of exciting and proprietary technology here, but need to always keep in mind technology is an enabler for the real business.

So going back to our meter reading/energy  technology enabler, following ‘Marketing 101’ thinking, a good starting point in the policy discussion is to develop proposed applications which target sectors and deliver real definable benefits to users. Some
suggestions, and I am sure readers will have many more ideas:

1.Senior Utility Management Program: Integrated program to manage all utilities targeting seniors – integrated billing, management, budgeting service with appliance management and maintenance – turnkey service. While I do not expect utilities to
necessarily offer these services, utilities can take the lead defining these new capabilities, making data available to third party providers, and  create an exciting new market segment which will attract  new ventures. Note utilities can be the driver here, pursuing an ‘open platform’ strategy, setting standards, following the model in other sectors.

2. Home Management Services: Expand the model, leverage M2M (machine to machine) technologies, and offer users a comprehensive utility and home management/monitoring  system, status updates and other features. These applications are emerging in various forms – what I am suggesting is utilities  can be
‘entrepreneurial partners’ here to help jumpstart the process. The M2M market ,  is exploding, and these applications deliver real benefits to users

‘Marketing 101’ thinking works in the commercial sector to develop and drive new business. Given technology advances in the utility sector, I see opportunity for Marketing 101” thinking there also to improve utility cost performance and deliver  real benefits (not just new technology) to users.

Paul B. Silverman

Author: Worm on a Chopstick : Understanding Today’s Entrepreneurial Age: Directions, Strategies, Management Perspectives https://paulbsilverman.com/books/

Email:      paul@paulbsilverman.com
blogs:       https://paulbsilverman.com/blog/
Linked in:  Paul Silverman
Twitter:     globalbizmentor

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Boards & Directors 35th Anniversary Edition Features Worm On A Chopstick

Very pleased to announce that the upcoming 35th Anniversary Edition of Boards & Directors magazine will feature Worm On A Chopstick: : Understanding Today’s Entrepreneurial Age: Directions, Strategies, Management Perspectives in its recommended reading section “Book it: Best bets for board reading“.  As you may know, Boards & Directors magazine targets officers and directors of public companies. To see the  review of ‘Chopstick’ and other recommended books, click here Worm On A Chopstick Featured in Directors & Boards 35th Anniversary Issue

I sent many messages to traditional management in ‘Chopstick’ (e.g., innovation management, entrepreneurial thinking, globalization, etc.), but most positive response for the book to date has been from the entrepreneurial sector. I am very appreciative of the recognition of ‘Chopstick’ which is in good company with the other recommended books here.

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How To Be A Startup CEO – Bing Gordon Kleiner Perkins Video

Excellent video I highly recommend by Bing Gordon, partner at VC firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (http://tinyurl.com/6vc5hy8). I also posted comments on video site and will be using some of these ideas in upcoming entrepreneurship course am teaching at GWU;

My posted comments as follows:

Excellent insightful presentation. I contribute teaching entrepreneurship in the George Washington University School of Business CFEE (“Center for Entrepreneurial Excellence”) and also serve as CEO of Sante Corp, a new venture with proprietary technology developing a new web-based personal health management system. My recently published book Worm on a Chopstick : Understanding Today’s Entrepreneurial Age: Directions, Strategies, Management Perspectives shared perspectives and tips on what entrepreneurial company managers need to know to move to beyond a start-up to create a high growth company.

Many excellent management tips and messages in Bing Gordon’s video I am sharing with both students and colleagues. There are 3 messages in particular I am emphasizing:

  • The Need to Balance Management and Entrepreneurial Responsibilities Entrepreneurship is messy and often frenetic, pursuing innovative technologies, new product launches and building an organization with minimal capital. CEO must nuture and balance entrepreneurial culture with clear focus on tightly managing results. I find many entrepreneurs lack the ‘traditional’ management skills and have a ‘build it and they will come’ philosophy- these new management skills can and must be learned. Bing Gordon’s presentation clearly reinforces this point.
  • Quantifying Objectives with Trackable Milestones Gordon describes Intel’s ‘OKR’ or ‘Objectives and Key Results’ management approach – managers set objectives and identify and track 2 to 3 results, and managers expected to achieve 70 percent of results. Very important discipline which helps companies grow and send messages to Boards and investors. I have used KPI’s (‘Key Performance Indicators’) for years in many global businesses, discussed KPIs in my recent book, and counseled many CEO’s to adopt and use these tools . Also proposed a similar approach to track large numbers of new inner-city entrepreneurial companies in a new “Entrepreneurial Empowerment Program (EEP)” I am proposing to the administration. Excellent discipline and should be more widely promoted.
  • CEO’s Need to Implement Scalable Processes CEO’s need to think and plan long term- that means understanding that scalable processes must be established early, what are the objectives of these processes, when are they needed, what cost-effective solutions can we implement now to serve as ‘building-blocks’ as business scales. This message is often missed by entrepreneurial managers struggling with day-to-day challenges with limited resources.

Thanks for sharing an excellent, insightful presentation.

Paul B. Silverman

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Entrepreneurship in the Health Care Sector and Syndicated National Radio Interview – Entrepreneurship- New Directions

Upcoming – TV Interview :Entrepreneurship in the Health Care Sector and Syndicated National Radio Interview: Entrepreneurship- New Directions

I have agreed to do a one hour TV interview on entrepreneurship in the health care sector. The interview will be scheduled for early January and follows my recent live TV interview discussing entrepreneurship on the weekly Upside Business Show on November 21st- the program was well received – copy of broadcast now available at http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/18671440 (click on Nov.21st show if needed)

While we see enormous challenges in today’s health care market, positive developments are emerging. One perspective, which I shared in my recent book ( Amazon at http://tinyurl.com/84texaf), is the pharmaceutical market includes two primary sectors—therapeutics (i.e., drugs) and diagnostics. Therapeutics is the pharmaceutical firms’ traditional business, reported to be about a $400 to $450 billion market.

Compare that to the diagnostics business, which includes several hundred companies, including many early stage entrepreneurial companies. Revenue estimates vary, but total diagnostic sector revenues are estimated at less than $30 billion, or less than 10 percent of a major pharmas traditional business. But diagnostics reduces health care costs and improves patient care, and many exciting developments are emerging providing the tools needed to improve early disease detection and wellness. Most important, we see entrepreneurial firms creating real excitement here. In the upcoming interview, I will share my vision on new directions I foresee and also invite one or more industry representatives to also share their insights.

I also accepted an invitation for an interview on a nationally syndicated NYC radio show to discuss new entrepreneurship directions and policies.

Stay tuned for dates and times – schedules to be firmed up shortly.

 

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Who Thought Paper Was Gone: How About Mini-Newspapers?

Newspapers are not quite gone yet. Mini-newspapers are coming.

Here is an excerpt from an interesting post by Emma Hutchings about a new mini-newspaper printer:

London-based design studio BERG has created a small device that prints out personalized, receipt-sized paper strips with news, puzzles, social network updates and information from apps. The Little Printer connects wirelessly to the web via an included Bridge unit. Using your phone as a remote control, you can configure it and set up subscriptions to different publications, and it will then gather these together into a personalized print-out for you. When you press the button it produces small black and white thermal updates

The benefits of paper in digital world? ” You can paste in it on the refrigerator, fold up in your wallet and scribble on it.” Given the explosive growth of mobile devices of every shape and kind, Little Printer take us in a new and I think interesting direction. Will be watching market reaction to this development and other products in the queue here. Check out

http://www.psfk.com/2011/11/little-printer-generates-mini-newspapers-of-curated-content.html#ixzz1fC8Yw0r2

 

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How A Startup Catalyst in Lebanon Helps Young, Aspiring Entrepreneurs

How A Startup Catalyst in Lebanon Helps Young, Aspiring Entrepreneurs

You read that right, Lebanon. One of Lebanon’s most active startup catalysts, Seeqnce, hosted a new competition in partnership with Cedrus Ventures during Global Entrepreneurship Week.

Over two weeks in Seeqnce’s new interactive workspace in Hamra, young aspiring entrepreneurs submitted ideas, formed teams, underwent training and selection, and then completed a 48-hour bootcamp, culminating in a prototype pitch to judges. Of
60 initial entrepreneurs, only 42 made the initial cut to form 11 teams, and one team dropped out due to the pressure. Many fledgling startups gained valuable experience here.

Teams present their business models to the jury, led by the Minister of Telecommunications Nicolas Sehnaoui. Each team had five minutes to explain their business concept and general revenue model, and then they had to showcase either a working prototype or a skeleton of their website. The jury assessed them based on four criteria: team members, presentation, product, and viability. Jury members asked tough questions, such as the supply chain of some products and how some of these startups were differentiating themselves from other established companies on the market.

The above highlights are extracted from an interesting article which I recommend reading
http://www.wamda.com/2011/11/its-not-just-about-the-idea-at-startup-competition-the-execution

Here are my observations on the above:

  • The MENA (Middle East North Africa) region has a vibrant, energetic new venture community driven by aspiring entrepreneurs – this is a positive force in these countries – I find many in the U.S. are not aware of this
  • The MENA economies are really driven by smaller companies – for example, in Saudi Arabia, about 40 percent of the population work in companies with market cap of less than $15,000. While many are what we call ‘necessity’ vs ‘opportunity’ driven small business, nonetheless the new venture momentum is strong
  • The above scenario is, at some level, repeated in every country in the world. Global entrepreneurship is alive and well. As an example, I closely track the health care sector and while the US has an impressive health care system, most would be surprised at the level of innovation  emerging from overseas entrepreneurs.
  • Helping these efforts provides many of the benefits you would expect such as regional economic growth, job creation, and so on. Being directly involved in this area several years ago, I saw one other benefit- the ability to identify and build on these
    relationships to create a win-win and also help U.S. companies and our economy.

Today this is an ad-hoc effort . During a November 21st TV interview on the Inside Scoop Business program http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/18671440 , I described a new program, the AEGIS program (“Accelerated Entrepeneurial Global Investment System) I am proposing to help attract overseas innovative ventures and technology to the U.S. market to promote job creation, innovation, and economic growth. Some key features of the proposed new program which I described in the interview:

  • Replaces today’s ad-hoc approach to identify, analyze, track and manage new ventures with a highly structured, well-defined program
  • Builds a base of ‘showcase’ companies in targeted sectors (e.g., alternative energy, bio-tech, health care, others) that provide high upside, economic benefits
  • New U.S. entities have global reach thus creating new export opportunities

I am starting discussions with the administration in early December related to AEGIS and will be seeking to attract major business partners to also participate. From my perspective looking at global entrepreneurship, I see many benefits here and the
ability to create win-win situations with overseas partners.

Stay tuned.

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Entrepreneurship -Interview on Inside Scoop Business Show Nov 21st

Agreed to be interviewed on weekly Upside Business Show November 21st- live on local channel 10, FIOS, Comcast, other TV markets, and live web streaming

Copy of broadcast now available at http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/18671440 (click on Nov.21st show if needed)

Welcome your comments on the show – I think local entrepreneurs may find this helpful

Here is blurb I shared with local press and regional business development groups after the program:

In the one hour program, I  reviewed entrepreneurial strategies, perspectives for entrepreneurs, sharing some perspectives on evaluating ventures and new venture strategy.

I also reviewed several new entrepreneurial programs I have proposed to support job creation and economic growth- discussion expanded on information in my recently published book Worm on a Chopstick : Understanding Today’s Entrepreneurial Age: Directions, Strategies, Management Perspectives ( available at Amazon, Kindle) Good discussion with strong feedback – I am encouraged by the positive response

I do see real opportunity to develop creative entrepreneurial-driven, business expansion programs and  shared some of the directions I am pursuing on the show. Given today’s economic situation, we need to do more here.

I have shared my views on what I think should be done and will be talking with both administration staff and private groups in the next few weeks to discuss these initiatives. I welcome the feedback of others who also have interest and ideas- we need a dialog here given the job creation and economic challenges we are facing.

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