Ignacio L

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On November 15, 2018, Ignacio L commented on Under Armour and Additive Manufacturing :

Your article is very interesting. It clearly explains the challenges that Under Armour faces in relation to the adoption of additive manufacturing.

In relation to your question regarding how competitors will adopt this technology, I think that most of the important players of the footwear and apparel industry will use additive manufacturing to transform their customer experience. This technology allows for higher customization, and this is essential in a context in which customers demand more personalized items. While some brands are working on the idea of printing cloth at their stores, some start-ups are working on the concept of printing cloth at home (see cited article). [1]

In that context, it is hard to imagine what role companies such as Under Armour will play in the footwear and apparel industry. Will they stick to the concept of selling cloth, or will they change their business models to sell designs for people to print cloth at their homes using 3d printers?

Evidently, additive manufacturing is disrupting the footwear and apparel industry, and companies will have to adapt to an increasingly dynamic environment.

[1] The Future of Fashion Is 3D Printing Clothes at Home, James Tarmy, Bloomberg, April 15th 2016, accessed November 2018, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-04-15/3d-printing-is-poised-to-bring-haute-couture-into-the-home

This well-written article clearly states the numerous challenges that the translation industry is facing as a result of the incorporation of machine learning.

Addressing your questions, I think that the translation business will keep changing at a radical pace. It is estimated that within one to three years, 50% of the translation job will be performed by machines. Therefore, the effective adoption of machine learning is essential to survive in this dynamic industry. [1]

As your article mentions, LSP will have to compete with big technology companies such as Google that devote many resources to their translation services. As these companies keep improving their algorithms, I wonder what can LSP do to differentiate their services. Should they focus on translations for specific industries (differentiation strategy), or should they collaborate with the big technology companies to co-create translation products (collaborative strategy). The latter strategy may be an effective way for LSP to adapt to the new scenario, but is the company willing to share its know-how with the big players?

To sum up, I enjoyed your article and I think you raised some interesting questions regarding the future of the translation industry.

[1] Will Machine Learning AI Make Human Translators An Endangered Species? Bernard Marr, Forbes, August 24th 2018, accessed November 2018, https://www.forbes.com/sites/bernardmarr/2018/08/24/will-machine-learning-ai-make-human-translators-an-endangered-species/#69cc05a73902

Great article on how 3d printing can be effectively used to enhance the food business.

Addressing your question about who would capture the benefits created by the 3d printing business, I think that the sellers of the inputs (in this case Hershey´s) will take most of the profits. Take the example of Lexmark’s. This company sells printers (hardward) and supplies. The commoditization of the printing hardware in the last decade pushed prices down, therefore reducing margins. Therefore, companies such as Lexmark’s are focusing on making profits by selling the inputs (cartridges). [1] I think something similar will happen in the chocolate industry. Companies such as Hershey´s will sell the hardware (3d printers) at the lowest possible price to attract many customers, and once they develop a significant customer base, they will sell multiple inputs at a profitable price.

To sum up, I appreciated your article and I think you addressed very important issues in relation to the challenges of using 3d printing in the food business.

[1] Weak Demand For Printer Supplies And Hardware Will Continue To Hinder Lexmark’s Printer Business, Forbes, December 10th 2015, accessed November 2018, https://www.forbes.com/sites/greatspeculations/2015/12/10/weak-demand-for-printer-supplies-and-hardware-will-continue-to-hinder-lexmarks-printer-business/#5eb0203f7721

On November 14, 2018, Ignacio L commented on Investment Banks and Machine Learning: Friend or Foe? :

This is a great article that clearly explains the numerous challenges that the investment banking world faces in terms of technological disruptions.

Addressing your question, I think that investment banks will keep playing an important role in the issuance business. Banks will keep providing the means (could be either people or technological platforms) to issue financial products. However, I believe that a higher level of automatization will compress margins. Once machines incorporate the technical know-how necessary to connect all participants, companies will need fewer people, therefore reducing costs. According to Vikram Pandit, former Citibank chief, nearly 30% of banking positions will be replaced by technology [1]. In addition, the decrease in salaries expenses and the lower level of technical know-how necessary to access the issuance business will decrease barriers to entry. A higher level of competition and a reduction in costs will compress margins, forcing investment banks to think about developing new businesses to sustain their historical levels of profitability.

To conclude, I agree with your argument that machine learning can either benefit or deteriorate the business model of investment banks. The ability of banks to adapt to the new circumstances will define their future.

[1] “AI in banking: the reality behind the hype”, Financial Times, April 12th 2018, accessed November 2018, https://www.ft.com/content/b497a134-2d21-11e8-a34a-7e7563b0b0f4

The article is very compelling. Food trends are changing at a radical pace. The world is demanding food that is healthier, more natural and produced in an environmentally friendly manner. I think that Pepsico is correctly understanding that open innovation is essential to constantly create new products that adapt to the new requirements.

I would like to point two challenges that I think the company has to address. First, food trends vary per country. Some countries may be demanding more organic products, while others may be more interested in getting cheaper food. Therefore, I think that Pepsico has to account for country differences and create open innovation initiatives in different places. Secondly, the article mentions that Pepsico invests in new trends that may be essential for the company’s future performance. It seems that the company needs to bet on multiple startups to avoid missing the next future trend. However, the question is when, and up to what extent, Pepsico will get involved in successful ventures. If a startup grows and becomes a big business, will Pepsico get more involved in the management to integrate that business into their business model? Or will it be a passive investor that let entrepreneurs be independent and keep disrupting the food business? This type of open innovation will eventually create management challenges that the company will need to address.

To sum up, I enjoyed reading about this topic and I think you made a very good job explaining the importance of open innovation for the food industry.

On November 14, 2018, Ignacio L commented on Open Innovation at Tesla – Time for a Change? :

Very interesting article! I think that Tesla should not reconsider their open innovation strategy for two reasons. First, the company is generally ahead of its competitors in terms of innovation, so the fact that they share their past developments won’t put their business at risk. Their competitive advantage is based on their research and development skills, which enable them to continuously enhance previous developments. Hence, they can always be ahead of their competitors by being more creative and disruptive in terms of improving previous developments. Secondly, I think that Tesla should leverage open innovation to work in collaboration with some competitors to jointly develop technologies. For example, Toyota and BMW are working together to co-develop green technologies. I think Tesla can find strategic partners in the industry to share knowledge and leverage R&D skills. I suggest looking at the below article (pages 23-24) to expand on this idea of collaborative open innovation.


Overall, great job on analyzing this very interesting topic.