The Bankwatch

Tracking the consumer evolution of financial services

Book | Business Model Generation: Osterwalder and Pigneur

It was exciting to open the mailbox tonight and see my copy of Business Model Generation.

alex_book

I first met co-author Alex at LIFT in Geneva. He and his colleagues have performed much work focused on the aspects of business model creation, and in particular financial services. I was fortunate enough to be involved in a small way when Alex opened up the creation of the book online to what became 470 other online participants. The result is fabulous and a different kind of book … its more of a handbook for your business model.

I have been speaking here for two years that banks need to re look at their model. The current mid/post crisis situation for banks is dramatically different for them, when compared to the situation when they entered the crisis. The nature of consumer demand, and the mix of product requirement is different. Consumers are paying down debts, and taking a longer view of their finances. At the same time, Banks are looking at tighter liquidity requirements, and higher capital requirements all of which play into their ability to manage new product volume. Cost cutting will not be enough …. it will require drastic cost elimination in many cases to re-orchestrate the business model for the new normal. In this atmosphere, the old business model with tweaks will not, in my view, be enough. Amongst the financial utilities who are managed by government there is a real need and opportunity to become the innovator in financial services that is recognised by customers for being with them in this new world.

The book covers many aspects:

  • Canvas: definition of a business model
  • Patterns: understanding new models, eg free, open source, multi sided, long tail
  • Design: tools and methods
  • Strategy: evaluation and management
  • Process
  • Outlook and Afterward

It is a differently laid out book, and it is more of a handbook than a reference text. It is the kind of book you will retain on the office bookshelf and pick up often.

This is the perfect time to revisit banks’ business models, and Business Model Generation is in my view a great place to start thinking about that. I recommend it, and there is a complete 1st chapter available to download so you can decide for yourself.

Well done Alex and Yves.

PS .. in deference to the American FTC and their new requirement announced today, that people should believe what they say, ahem, I note that I believe the above and am not remunerated in any way.  Go Alex!

Written by Colin Henderson

October 6, 2009 at 21:14

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