Thanks for the post! It’s very interesting to see how they’ve chosen to organize their R&D department along the axis of DBA’s. I wonder how other large biotech firms (like Amgen for instance) have designed their R&D organizations and what the pros/cons of the different approaches are.
This was partially referenced in one of the earlier comments, but I would be interested in better understanding their strategy around in-house research vs. acquisitions/partnerships. Biotech is clearly a space where a lot of innovation occurs in academia or in very small single-product companies, so I wonder to what extent Roche’s operating model includes this type of external opportunity seeking as well.
Interesting post. A truly amazing company that has managed to create a league of its own amongst all the luxury brands. A couple of points I would be interested in understanding better:
1) Freelance model. I was totally unaware of the prominent role freelancers play in the design process. Do these individuals function as sub-contractors? Given the emphasis Hermes places on human capital (as you highlight), I’m curious how they manage relationships with these third-party individuals.
2) You mention this fact, but it would be interesting to understand how large of a role the family ownership structure plays in the success of the company. I wonder if it’s given them the ability to think longer-term and make difficult decisions that other conglomerate-owned fashion companies are unable to make.
3) Also, very interesting point on scalability. Clearly the business has grown over time, but given the luxury nature of the product, scale is not necessarily a good thing as it can jeopardize the brand’s exclusivity. This is certainly not a problem that most businesses have!
Great stuff, thank you for sharing!