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Posts Tagged ‘interesting’

Future of warehouses?

November 2, 2017 Leave a comment

It seems like there’s not a week (or is it day?) that goes by without much hand wringing about how machines are going to take over humans. The New Yorker led with this this week on its cover. Buried in the article on this topic was a eye opening (for me) piece on the future of warehousing, led by companies such as Symbiotic.

warehouse future

What’s different about companies such as these (rather than companies that simply automate pieces of the way warehouses currently work), is that they sell fully automated warehouse systems. A few tidbits that caught my eye:

  • Since the robots don’t need light to operate, the warehouse requires 35% less energy than conventional warehouses.
  • The warehouses can run ~24 hours a day.
  • It costs ~$50M to install, and pays for itself in about 4.5 years
  • Apparently Target, Walmart and Coca Cola are experimenting with this

If you are interested , there’s a longer (but older) article on this from the WSJ.

 

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Wisdom of ~500 CEOs synthesized

October 30, 2017 Leave a comment

I found this article in the NY Times from Adam Bryant on the top things he’s learned in interviewing over 500 CEOs pretty interesting. At first glance, I thought it would be the normal business pabulum, but there a few nuggets in there on life, hiring, leadership, culture etc. that I found interesting. Although, it’s hard to summarize, the quote about culture stood out for me.

People seeing who succeeds and fails in the company defines culture. The people who succeed become role models for what’s valued in the organization, and that defines culture.

Worth a read.

Categories: interesting, tips Tags: ,

Cars account for ~60% of airport revenue

August 16, 2017 Leave a comment

 

airport revenue

Apparently car parking & rental car concession fees account for ~60% of non-aeronautical fees for airports in North America. (I would have put the figure for retail / food at a much higher level than that.)

Given the juggernaut that is ride-sharing, this share is likely to take steep tumble: Although consultants used to have to rent cars in the old days, I’ve yet to meet a consultant who’s not addicted to Uber.

Categories: interesting, travel, trends Tags: ,

Online retailers ~2x profitable as offline

August 6, 2017 Leave a comment

I’m not a fan of cute images that show data, but this one (from the WSJ) caught my eye for its data. It basically compares the total costs of sales offline vs. online. Notice that key differences are in not having to pay store employees which more than offsets the costs of free shipping and returns. The full article is here.

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Priceline on fire

August 1, 2017 Leave a comment

priceline partyApparently Priceline (the original “name your own price” company) is crushing it on all dimensions. The Economist calls it as the “best run internet company after Amazon”. Pre-tax earnings are growing faster than those of the usual tech darlings; it has a 96% gross margin and its share price has risen 4x that of the broader market in the last year.

Even if you haven’t ever used Priceline, you may have used one of its sister companies – e..g Kayak, OpenTable etc. Some other things that caught my eye:

  • The firms valuation is above $100B (compare that to Airbnb at a ‘mere’ $30B)
  • It’s apparently the world’s largest spender on Google (it spends ~$3.5B a year)
  • It now offers about 600k listings of “alternate accommodations” on Booking.com, up 50% over last year or so, but still behind Airbnb’s ~3M listings.

The full article is here. Definitely worth a read.