The Future of Competitive Strategy

Unleashing the Power of Data and Digital Ecosystems

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How can legacy firms remain relevant in the digital era? In THE FUTURE OF COMPETITIVE STRATEGY, strategic management expert Mohan Subramaniam asserts that the answer lies in how well they can unleash the newfound power of data and digital ecosystems to forge a new competitive strategy. Drawing on the experiences of a range of companies, including Caterpillar, Sleep Number, and Whirlpool, he explains how firms can benefit from data's enlarged role in modern business, develop digital ecosystems tailored to their unique business needs, and use new frameworks to harness the power of data for competitive advantage.

Subramaniam shows how legacy firms can use interactive data in addition to their traditional use of episodic data. Episodic data come from discrete events - such as the sale of a product, or the shipment of a component. Interactive data is streamed continuously – such as by browsing on Amazon or posting likes on Facebook. By generating and sharing interactive data in their platforms’ digital ecosystems, companies such as Amazon and Facebook have generated enormous value. Now, with the proliferation of sensors and IoT, legacy firms also have the opportunity to benefit from interactive data and digital ecosystems. They must however craft their competitive strategy in ways that enable harnessing their prevailing product-footprints and value chain infrastructures to fully unleash the powers of data and digital ecosystems. This book details how firms can do so.

Subramaniam describes how firms can elevate their traditional value chains into new digital ecosystems by turning them into a combination of production and consumption ecosystems. Through several examples he explains how, using these digital ecosystems, legacy firms can unlock the value of data at various levels—from improving operational efficiencies to creating new data-driven services and transforming traditional products into digital platforms. He introduces novel concepts of digital customers – customers who provide firms with interactive data; and digital competitors—other firms that have access to similar data. He discusses the new digital capabilities that firms need to develop and addresses privacy and security issues associated with data sharing.

Who needs this book? Any firm that wants to revitalize traditional business models, offer a richer customer experience, and expand its competitive arena into new digital ecosystems.

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Published by The MIT Press (2022)

Future of Competitive Strategy book launch
Mohan Subramaniam portrait
Mohan Subramaniam

Mohan Subramaniam is Professor of Strategy and Digital Transformation at the IMD Business School in Lausanne, Switzerland. He has trained senior executives around the world on digital competitive strategy and strategic…

Advance Praise

Is Your Company Squandering Digital Opportunities?
Topics: Digital
By Mohan Subramaniam - 8 August 2022
Many companies today fail to see the threats and opportunities that new digital technologies represent.
3 min. read
The 4 Tiers of Digital Transformation
Topics: Digital
By Mohan Subramaniam - 21 September 2021
Companies often assume that if they embrace digital technology in any way, they’re digitally transforming their business.
5 min. read
Are You Using the Right Data to Power Your Digital Transformation?
Topics: Digital
By Mohan Subramaniam - 3 December 2021
Most legacy firms rely on episodic data, generated by discrete events such as the shipment of a component from a supplier, or the sale of a product. T
5 min. read
The Pathway to Digital Transformation
Topics: Digital
By Mohan Subramaniam - 21 July 2022
Digital transformation is a top strategic priority for business leaders today. IDC estimates that firms will invest around $6.8 trillion between 2020–2023 for this objective
5 min. read