AEM 322 - Case 8 - Webvan - Simon Wong AEM 322 Case 8...

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Simon Wong 3/27/08 AEM 322 – Case 8 – Webvan Prof. Aija Leiponen 1.) Webvan.com was the brainchild of Louis Borders. It was his attempt to revolutionize the grocery industry. As a startup in the internet grocery business, Borders had to choose a good business model in which to follow. When deciding on the business model, one has to take into account the imitability of the business and the existence of complementary assets. Imitability is the extent to which the technology can be copied, substituted, or leapfrogged by other competitors. With this definition in mind, one can easily spot that Webvan.com would have a high imitability since the use of the Internet is relatively easy to copy (in fact, during the startup of Webvan.com, there were already other competitors in the market such as Peapod.com, Streamline.com, etc.). Complementary assets are all the other capabilities that the firm needs to exploit the new technology. Examples of Webvan.com’s complementary assets are things such as brand name,
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This note was uploaded on 10/23/2008 for the course AEM 3220 taught by Professor Leiponen,a. during the Spring '07 term at Cornell University (Engineering School).

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