An Ecosystem-Level Process Model of Business Model Disruption: The Disruptor's Gambit
50 Pages Posted: 26 Apr 2018 Last revised: 15 May 2018
Date Written: February 1, 2018
Based on a longitudinal case study, this paper presents an ecosystem-level process model of the interlocking key activities of the business model disruptor, other ecosystem participants (customers, partners, media, analysts), and the incumbent. Together these constitute a strategic process of ecosystem evolution from incumbent-centered to disruptor-centered. We identify the phenomenon of a “disruptor’s gambit,” where the disruptor reveals its intentions early on through effective framing, followed by rapid adaptation of its business model to satisfy ecosystem needs. These processes generate a virtuous framing-adaptation cycle, where feed-forward and feedback enable rapid response to customers and partners, while engaging them as force multipliers during new ecosystem creation. Our findings suggest that framing constitutes a dynamic strategic process enabling disruptors to reduce uncertainty, dislodge powerful incumbents, and shape new ecosystems through business model innovation.
Keywords: disruption, business model innovation, framing, adaptation, ecosystem creation
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