It is rare for a sequel to do better than the original. But that is precisely what is likely to happen in the case of platform business models.
The B2C platform model – the one that has made companies like Alibaba, Apple, Google and Amazon incredibly rich and influential – is the original story. It appeared in the 1990s. But now the sequel, the B2B platform business model, could end up stealing the show.
Technology consultancy Frost & Sullivan predicts that B2B platform commerce could rake in sales of US$6.7 trillion by 2020, double the amount it projects for B2C business.
Dassault Systèmes is a pioneer in the B2B platform space. When we launched our 3DEXPERIENCE platform in 2012, we created an entirely new category we describe as a “business experience” platform. Industry analysts call it a “product innovation” platform.
Once analysts began talking about product innovation platforms, a lot of companies rushed to claim platform status. Do not be fooled. They target only one corporate function or another; they are glorified point solutions delivered online. Let me be arrogant for the sake of being clear: only the 3DEXPERIENCE platform is a truly diverse, holistic platform.
Why is that important? Because successful businesses do not create customer experiences in isolated and independent phases of concept, design, engineering, marketing and manufacturing. They create them in all of these functions, simultaneously and collaboratively. Only the 3DEXPERIENCE platform enables this, which is why we call it holistic.
What is more, only our platform is truly digital. Electronic point solutions store static files. They cannot operate as real-time platforms. Our digital platform eliminates files and, in the process, eliminates data silos and duplication as well.
Now we have advanced the 3DEXPERIENCE platform again, adding the 3DEXPERIENCE Marketplace. This transactional marketplace matches those who need services with those who can provide them, beginning with industrial and certified 3D printing.
The Marketplace is a natural extension of the 3DEXPERIENCE platform. It further simplifies the process of crafting delightful customer experiences. It is the first of many services we plan to offer and an important extension of our leadership. By enabling transactions that enhance innovation, our business experience platform just became your holistic business companion.