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Nigel Walton, MBA, Dip. M., BA (Hons), Worcester Business School, University of Worcester.


This paper explores the rapid growth of four internet-based corporations and critiques the extent to which the Internet has developed from being simply a powerful tool and enabler of industry innovation to achieving status as a fully-fledged technology-based business ecosystem. The need to develop new management theories, tools, and techniques to compete with the “Gang of Four” (Amazon, Apple, Google, and Facebook) is also discussed in some depth as well as providing a critique of traditional models/strategic approaches and more recent theories. This is considered to be an important area of research because as a new class of Internet company emerges, incumbent firms in traditional industries will need to know how to prepare for the new challenges that face them.


business ecosystem, platforms, catalyst, infomediaries, white space, blue ocean strategy

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