High Growth & Disruption Trends in the Sharing Economy

Sharing Economy Ranan LachmanThere’s certainly compelling evidence for the benefits that the sharing economy can have for consumers. Recently, a report by Credit Suisse identified three types of sharing businesses: individuals selling or renting their own goods and services (Airbnb, Pley), membership platforms that allow people to easily rent items or access services (Zipcar, eLance), and collaborative sites on which people exchange mostly intangible services such as product reviews (TripAdvisor, Yelp) or knowledge, as well as more tangible things like funding (Kickstarter, Lending Club).

However, four sectors – business services, financial services, transportation, and travel and leisure – have proven most amenable to entrée by new sharing-based business models.

In finance, for example, peer-to-peer lending is growing 30 percent a year in the U.S. and Europe. If it keeps growing at that pace, it will account for 25 percent of loans to small and medium-sized businesses by 2025.  { this looks like more than article writing and not something they i’ll source out to find a quote as this is supposed to be my own words}

Additionally, with the number of people working on a freelance basis rising in the U.S., platforms that connect freelancers to employers (Upwork  and Freelancer) and collaborative workspaces that rent out work stations and offices on demand (WeWork, Workspace) should grow rapidly, too.

The following are high growth & disruption trends as expected in the Sharing Economy from a discussion among several thought leaders:

  • A shift is happening from old power to new power: New power harnesses the crowd in a highly decentralized way with a distributed and “sideways” business model.
  • For startups coming with new ideas that can harness the sharing economy: A prototype is worth a thousand meetings: Get to market as quickly as possible, play with models, and learn as fast as you can.
  • Trust is the new currency: How people are treated within your community and where they receive value is increasingly important.
  • Three “mega trends” will lead to radical new business values based on co-creation: The Internet of Things (IoT); Digital Manufacturing; and Machine Learning.
  • Maturity leads to creating a “service ecosystem” around your brand: Rather than focusing on one core product or service, companies examine the entire range of customer needs in the Collaborative Economy.

Although the examples of Sharing Economy companies range enormously in scale, maturity, and purpose, they share similar underlying principles essential to making them work.

Sources: http://www.businessinsider.com/credit-suisse-sharing-economy-revenue-335-billion-by-2025-2015-11 and Crowd Companies

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