Mary Li

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On November 20, 2016, Mary Li commented on Digitizing Indonesia, One Arisan at a Time :

Hi Levi – thank you for this blog post, definitely very heartfelt reading about a company whose mission is to create social impact through financial empowerment of the 95%. One idea I had along with the great work RUMA is currently doing is to offer financial education through its apps to the villagers and rural Indonesians who might not have sophisticated understanding of how they can invest/save their income. Another potential idea is for RUMA to partner with the banking system to offer micro financing to these mom and pop shops to empower these people to be entrepreneurial and move up the social latter. Love to hear your thoughts on the feasibility of these ideas.

Allenmind – thank you for sharing this article. As someone who grew up in China, I’m very glad to hear that technology has been used to transform the quality of life there. It definitely seems like SF Express has been doing great working – using data driven analysis to provide better customer service and competing head-on-head with big players like Tencent and Alipay in the payment system space. My question is, since a lot of consumers in China are also heavy users of Tencent and Alipay, wouldn’t it be easy for these bigger players to utilize consumer data to cater to their customers. How replicable is SF Express’ business model and what is it’s competitive advantage? What other types of competitive threats do you see and what’s your assessment of SF Express’ business model resilience against these threats?

On November 20, 2016, Mary Li commented on Banking five times as fast: BCP’s digital transformation :

TPA – thank you for your post. Very interesting to see how digitalization has transformed the banking world in Peru. Similar to the Alibaba base we did, a huge component of shifting consumer behavior from going to a physical banking location to using mobile/internet banking is trust. Even in the US, there has been some hurdles to convert consumers completely. According to the fed, 42% of people still think mobile/internet banking is unsafe and security is a huge concern. How do you think BCP can combat this very relevant and real concern, and help consumers gain trust in its digital banking system?

On November 20, 2016, Mary Li commented on Connected sensors for water quality testing :

Hi Rob – thank you for sharing this article with us. It’s scary to internalize the first graph you posted. I’m in shock that ~18 million people in the US were served water with unacceptable traces of lead and copper. I can definitely see how NanoAffix can add value by detecting water impurity from the source. My question is, even if local and state government installed NanoAfflix, will that be enough to incentivize them to invest in water infrastructure? There is still a gap between knowing the problem and doing something about it. I also agree with the folks above re: whether B2C is the right strategy, since it seems like water, as a public utility should be “fixed” from the source.

On November 20, 2016, Mary Li commented on Starbucks: A Technology Pioneer :

Hi SBUX – appreciate your post! Def agree that mobile ordering creates better operational efficiency. Though you argue that going mobile and adding delivery services (either via postdate or drones) could elevate the customer experience, I wonder if it really would if these customers visit the retail stores less. So much of the SBUX experience is about the atmosphere in the physical store from a smile to friendly attitude to chic furniture/decor. Do you think going digital complement or replace the traditional experience?

In addition, given that we just did the climate change challenge, what do you think of the delivery initiative in relation to SBUX’s commitment in sustainability. Delivery will likely increase SBUX’s carbon footprint. Should SBUX still offer this service at the expense of the environment?

On November 6, 2016, Mary Li commented on Dragons in the Sky – somewhere between Sao Paulo and Rio :

Hello “Sharp Boy” – interesting blog post. I would love to see whether airlines have committed to purchasing these new eco-friendly planes. Having worked at an airline myself, the struggle always comes down to cost. Given the low fuel price environment, purchasing fuel efficient new planes might not make sense given the high price tag on the new fuel-efficient aircrafts. How does Embraer tackle this issue, especially given its high investment in R&D and the need for a high price tag in return for an attractive ROI?

On November 6, 2016, Mary Li commented on MAERSK – Feeling Slow-Steamed by Regulators :

It is disappointing to see that the International Maritime Organization is failing to push for a level playing field regulation of CO2 and other harmful gasses emissions. However, companies like Maersk simply can’t rely on regulation. As we talked about in class during the IKEA case, companies and organizations cannot dependent on government and regulation due to the lack of framework in sustainability, instead, should take on sustainability in its own hands. Maersk should continue investing in the long-term and use its commitment in sustainability as a competitive advantage. For example, in 2014, Maersk was able to enter into a multi-annual agreement with a customer committing to a tailored CO2 target in alliance with the customer ( Maersk should continue to leverage its commitment in sustainability to build coalitions and partnerships.

That being said, Maersk should still try to influence and engage with regulators to create policies that support sustainability. A few recommendations for IMO include: 1) industry specific carbon tax/cap and trade, 2) stricter regulations on Sox and NOx beyond those adopted, as you mentioned, 3) new regulations on black carbon, particle matter and waste (

According to research by Zillow, one in eight Florida home would be underwater by 2100, equivalent to ~934K properties or $413 billion in property value ( It seems like many developers are already thinking ahead and investing in storm-resistant and resilient buildings on more elevated land. Consumers are also more aware, and seeking information on how much of a threat sea-level rises poses to a property ( Agree with your recommendation on diversifying investments outside of FL but would be great to hear what Related Group is planning to do to mitigate this risk for its existing properties in below sea-level areas.

On November 6, 2016, Mary Li commented on Sustainability in the apparel industry: Just do it. :

The most interesting part of the post to me is the carbon emissions by materials section. Knowing this information, Nike should both investigate how to reduce amount of material used per article of clothing and how to shift its products to be made from low energy intensive materials (synthetic rubber, cotton, etc). It seems like Nike is already heading towards the right direction by committing to minimize waste by 5% in key business operations and 10% reduction in its product environmental footprint (

I also agree that a recycling campaign could be another way that Nike can implement to make a difference. H&M gives a discount to customers who bring in used clothing and the incentive minimize the friction for customers. Nike could employ a similar strategy.

On November 4, 2016, Mary Li commented on United: Flying the EcoFriendly Skies :

Another opportunity is for United and other airlines alike to educate their 3.6 billion annual passengers directly about climate change and the impact it has on airline operations. Increasing awareness by showing its passengers the impact of climate change on its own operations and what proactive measures its currently taking to mitigate and adapt to the change is both great for consumer education and United’s PR. United could also further reduce its own carbon footprint by minimize its own paper use by replacing safety instructions, food menu, magazine with electronic ones, and by encouraging its passengers to use mobile boarding pass vs. printed tickets.