Author Archives: Braden Kelley

Earlier this week Zipcar announced that it was acquiring Seattle-based Flexcar. For those of you not familiar with either company, they are both pursuing the same innovation – rental cars available by the hour parked down the street–not by the day parked at the airport.Most people these days operate on the paradigm of owning a car for every adult in the household (if not more than one). A car used 15,000 miles per year at an average speed of 30mph equates to 500 hours of use (less than 1.5 hours per day – or about 2hrs/day at 20mph). This results in most cars sitting idle 22 of every 24 hours. If the owner takes public transportation to work, idle time increase to 23 of every 24 hours for the vehicle.Depending on your tastes, it costs about $6,000 to have a car (loan pmt., gas, insurance, repairs, etc.) – or coming … Continue reading

Leave a comment
Build a common language of innovation on your team

A good example of a charity investing in technologies that could lead to a better society is the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation and their $22 Million investment in a company called FoldRx. Check out this article in the Boston Globe. The article talks about how this investment could be a good example of how charity and private enterprise may better be able to collaborate together to undertake development efforts that will help society at large, but may not make sense on paper for bottom-line oriented investors. In this case the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation investment will serve to attract other investments that ultimately will allow for full funding of a research team that might not otherwise exist. This is but one example of the type of venture philanthropy and social venture capital solutions that are possible when donors, charities, and philanthropists think in new and different ways, innovative ways. Don’t miss an … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Lost in the noise this week was an announcement of a settlement in a legal dispute in which Sprint agreed to help current and former customers unlock their phones for use on other CDMA networks like Verizon.At the same time, they agreed to help customers wishing to bring an unlocked phone onto their network. This settlement is limited to the state of California and to Sprint only, but it begs the question: Is the tying of a phone to one network anti-competitive and should companies be required to unlock phones for customers or to sell unlocked phones, should they request one?This could have huge implications for the industry if this type of settlement and sentiment spread. Currently, it is not exactly easy or obvious on how to bring a compatible, unlocked phone to the network of your choice. Equally difficult is to take your phone to another carrier after you’ve … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
Build a common language of innovation on your team

Every once in a while innovations come along that offer profitable opportunities for the inventors and business minds that turn them into innovations, but offer even greater possibilities for humanity if widely adopted. I read an article in Fast Company recently that struck me as one of those opportunities. It profiles a mechanic name Jonathan Goodwin and his fuel efficiency exploits.Traditionally, a potentially market transforming technology will use a skimming price strategy and come into the marketplace priced high and gradually reach lower price points as volume builds and development costs are recouped. This is fine with something like the iPhone or high definition television, but it strikes me that on the other hand there is a loss to society with this price strategy with certain innovations. This includes things like life-saving drugs (AIDS, Cancer, etc.), but also other technologies like Mr. Goodwin’s innovation in internal combustion engine design. The … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment
Build a common language of innovation on your team

When it comes to a hotel room, how small is too small. There are several new entrants into the hotel market that are promising to shrink not only the price of a room, but the size of it as well. At first it sounds a lot like New York’s tiny hotel rooms, but the comparison stops there because those digs have sky high prices.In contrast, easyHotel offers hotel rooms in central London from 25gbp. Another recent creation from Philips and CitizenM utilizes pre-fabricated modules that only require four cables to be connected to have the room up and running. Small rooms aren’t so bad if the prices are small, and looking at photos they don’t look like they are quite as small as Tokyo’s pod hotels. Would you stay in one of these new small hotel rooms if the price was right? Don’t miss an article (3,950+) – Subscribe to … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
Build a common language of innovation on your team

I came across an interesting branding article on a BusinessWeek blog the other day about Al Gore, and I have to say one thing about Al Gore: Has there ever been a more successful loser in history? Al Gore lost or “lost” the 2000 Presidential election (depending on who you’re talking to), and since then has gone on to amass a fortune of over $100 million in the business world and win a Nobel Peace Prize. He has created a personal brand so strong that some say that he could waltz into the Democratic primaries at the last minute, win the nomination, and possibly even the White House. No matter what your party affiliation, you have to admit that Al Gore’s turnaround of his personal brand is phenomenal. For most presidential candidates, the loss of an election usually spells the end of their political career, but Al Gore has risen … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
Build a common language of innovation on your team

Sony has probably made its single biggest gamble to date with the Playstation 3. Lost in all of the stories about Sony’s recent struggles, is the monumental importance of Blu-ray succeeding. Sony has bet the future of two of its strategic pillars (video playback and video gaming) on Blu-ray’s success. These two strategic pillars are out on the table in a high stakes standards battle.This is not the first standards battle Sony has been in, and not even the first in the video marketplace. Many will remember Sony’s loss in the Beta versus VHS battle of the 80′s, which they lost despite having the superior technology. This time around they have paired with their nemesis from that standards battle, Matsushita, and the rival is instead Toshiba. Sony currently holds a slight lead over Toshiba’s platform, but Sony had a lead in the Beta versus VHS struggle as well, only to … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment