Getting Platform Envelopment Right to Emerge as the Ecosystem Platform Leader - A Case Study on Facebook and LinkedIn - (2006-2013)

Auracher, C.A. (2016) Getting Platform Envelopment Right to Emerge as the Ecosystem Platform Leader - A Case Study on Facebook and LinkedIn - (2006-2013).

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Abstract:The highly dynamic ICT industry is predominantly ruled by large platform companies such as Google, Apple, Facebook and Amazon. In order to adapt and grow, companies continuously introduce new technological innovations and changes to their business models. As identified by fellow scholars, platform companies often seek growth via means of ‘platform envelopment’ i.e. entering new markets by bundling and leveraging one’s own functionalities and user bases. Hitherto, the academic literature does not offer comprehensive insights as to whether there is a prevailing rationale at platform companies to use envelopment and evolve their business models over time. This paper seeks to start filling this gap and looks at the comparative case study of Facebook and LinkedIn. The companies’ new value propositions were analysed in the time period of 2006-2013. This illustrated that they were involved in highly similar growth strategies. Eisenmann’s et al. (2010) typology on envelopment attacks and Gawer’s (2015) insights on motivations behind certain envelopment moves, allowed the creation of the Envelopment Drivers Model. It grants a more in-depth view of a company’s envelopment efforts in terms of type, rationales, and concentrations during different lifecycle stages. In short, this paper analyses and discusses Facebook’s and LinkedIn’s growth pathways from 2006-2013, presents a tool to plot a company’s envelopment moves, and offers some guidance with respect to which growth trajectories are advisable for platform companies.
Item Type:Essay (Bachelor)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:85 business administration, organizational science
Programme:International Business Administration BSc (50952)
Link to this item:http://purl.utwente.nl/essays/70103
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