What are the barriers to entry in this industry? Is it drastically different than the craft beer business, where a influx of entrants have drove down market share and margins? Westland Distillery claims to be located in a prime location for distilling single malt whiskey, but can’t another distillery open up in the Seattle area, reaping the same benefits of climate and access to raw materials? Finally, I am not convinced that the Puget Sound area leads to better climate for the production of singe malts than the mountains of Colorado, equally close to raw materials, and home to Ten Mountain Whiskey. To further investigate this issue, a tasting of the various whiskeys may be required.
I really agree with your point on the Doorman service not being attractive to potential deliverers. When I drove for Uber, I found the biggest challenges were the time spent driving to the customer and the difficulty parking to wait for a customer. I believe Doorman would only excerbate this problem, as the time spent driving from the warehouse to the first drop off destination would not be earning the deliverer any money. As you pointed out, as these warehouse locations get larger, they will need to move outside the city, increasing the distance, and the cost to the deliverer in time and money. Additionaly, parking will be difficult and costly. Finding a parking spot in NYC and San Francisco is time consuming, and meters are expensive. I believe Doorman would need to drastically raise prices to offset these two issues, turning off potential customers.
Jeff Bezos’ plan to turn around the Washington Post is a really interesting topic. While he has been able to increase online views, I don’t believe it will be able to turn the paper profitable. Other than the Wall Street Journal, every national paper is hemmoraging money. While, at the margins, the Post may increase online ad revenue, they will need to dramatically cut costs to turn profitable, which would gut its ability to create the hard hitting reporting that is its competitive advantage. I think a more likely future is owning a national paper becomes a vanity project, one where a rich inidividual like Jeff Bezos is willing to subsidize its losses, similar to Chris Hughes, co founder of Facebook, owning The New Republic.