How to spot and leverage opportunities for multi-industry digital disruption after Covid-19 subsides.

by Thales S. Teixeira

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Photo of confluence of rivers by Ashwini Chaudhary on Unsplash

Confluence: noun; the junction of two or more rivers.

The headphones was invented in 1910 by a Nathaniel Baldwin. For more than 105 years after that, headphones have not significantly differed from the original two small speakers connected by a mounting head brace with a cable.

By 2008, worldwide sales of headphones hovered around $4 billion, and headphone prices mostly sold in the range of $15 to $30. That year saw the appearance of a new brand, Beats by Dr Dre, selling headphone…


What are algorithms? How are they different? And how to find out which ones are truly valuable?

by Prof. Thales S. Teixeira

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Algorithmic technologies — Machine Learning (ML), Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Big Data (BD) — have become all the rage as tools for business innovation. Startup entrepreneurs have come to find that simply adding ML or AI to their business descriptions, without having to explain the nuts and bolts of how it works, results in an immediate spark of interest from potential investors.

For the past three years, I have been a judge in CNBC’s annual Disruptor 50 competition


by Thales S. Teixeira

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In recent years, companies have offered bonuses, awards, career advancement, time off from work, and other incentives to inspire more workplace innovation. But as my former Harvard colleague Teresa Amabile and others have shown, a pay-for-performance approach applied to innovation tends to generate “more of the same” new ideas rather than concepts that are genuinely path-breaking. Large company employees who value their jobs will naturally suggest low risk ideas that leverage their company’s existing resources instead of utilizing new assets, technologies and partnerships. …


You won’t make much money; but you can generate cash flow for other profitable ventures.

by Thales S. Teixeira

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Are you thinking of starting an online retail business? Conventional wisdom says you should think again. Despite the fast change in consumer shopping habits from offline to online shopping in virtually every category imaginable, most pure e-retailers consistently lose money, and it’s not hard to see why. Prices online are transparent, and barriers to entry are low. If you make and sell something unique, you might be able to turn a good profit. But if you sell brands or products that…


While monopolies exercise power over customers, monopsonies undermine competition further upstream. To date, they’ve largely been given a pass.

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Vintage engraving of The Kraken, a legendary sea monster.

by Thales S. Teixeira.

More than a century ago, when President Theodore Roosevelt began scrutinizing corporate anti-competitive behavior with his characteristic zeal, federal regulators focused their ire on monopoly power. After achieving market concentration, so-called robber barons such as John D. Rockefeller and Andrew Carnegie had driven up consumer prices for oil and steel. Washington sought to restore a level playing field and protect consumer welfare.

Today, by contrast, fast-growing markets face an entirely different threat. Amazon, Apple, Google, and Facebook…

Prof. Thales Teixeira

fmr Harvard Professor

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