A business model refers to the reason behind the creation, delivery, and capture of value in multiple contexts, in diverse economic, cultural, political or other arenas. The development of successful business model architecture is a business model innovation and a significant element of good business strategy.

Links to the competitive position

A company’s competitive position and future growth are intimately linked to its business models; consequently, many businesses have turned to outside innovation to craft new business models and update their strategies. Companies have also found that modifying their business models can often yield quick, easy gains and sometimes create positive momentum for change. However, many businesses are sceptical about changing their existing models because of the inherent risk associated with doing so.

Innovation is not synonymous with change. Innovations are the product of an idea that could become practical but did not exist before the invention. For instance, the discovery of electricity and its usefulness throughout the world did not happen overnight. It was the culmination of years of research, development, testing, and the adoption of new practices that brought about electricity’s commercialization. But the actual creation of a business model does not happen overnight; it takes a period before a company can successfully implement and define a business opportunity.

Sets of activities

A model also encompasses a set of activities that drive a product or service into the marketplace. These activities are essential to making a product available for sale in a market and may include design, manufacture, distribution, marketing, advertising, and the product’s selling. The development of any given model depends heavily on the targeted end-users, the company’s market share, and the competition. Although innovations do occur in the market, changes usually occur at a slower pace than what is required to create disruptive innovation.

The concept of a business model can be useful as a starting point when trying to understand where innovation comes from within a company. A good business plan will outline the company’s processes to introduce new products into the marketplace. It will specify what steps are necessary to achieve success in the new market, and what resources are required to make those products available to customers. It will also address how entry barriers may impact the company’s ability to sell the products into the market successfully. As a starting point, this document should provide information on what the company is attempting to accomplish, who it provides to customers, what it plans to do to compete in the marketplace, how it intends to manage innovation and its risk management activities.

When answering the question, “What is a business model?” companies must first determine what type of innovation they wish to pursue. Unlike those that entail mergers and acquisitions, different approaches are commonly thought of as forms of design. Still, all of them require a solid business plan to be successful.


Innovation is a vital part of the business world today. However, it is often difficult for new businesses to gain a foothold in the market for their product or service. Companies that cannot demonstrate a viable business plan and an effective leadership team are unlikely to see growth in their company. To be successful, innovations must meet with established business models, and a firm understanding of a business model is essential to make that transition.

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