The week was impressive, filled with visits to old school doers in the field. Each visit was to a company that has been in existence for decades, which means they endured the economic crisis. The week was a peek into the core of New York’s fame. The visits took us to several moneyed companies that had success over the years. The companies gave lots of credit to luck, downplaying their positioning in being luck by doing the right kind of research and developing a sound strategy to follow.
The story of Zephyr and General Atlantic provided the perspective of the institutional investors – those companies that maintain offices in the heart of Manhattan. What contrasted this perspective was the voice of Steven Ibach and his granular approach to how finance functions and how that change is changing the focus of finance’s investments.
The core activities cannot change, which drew our attention to peripheral products and services. By looking at the past innovations in technology, we were able to deduce that apps, social media, and payment methods will be the new sources of revenue for financial institutions as margins shrink from trading related services and traditional sources.
This is all due to the disruption brought about by successful business people who went through the process of launching their ideas, finding success, and returning to the market as investor. This return of theirs is breaking the mold that they used. As such, the interest in private companies is becoming much more scrutinized and investors are looking earlier into the life of the company in order to find the next big thing before it becomes too expensive to capitalize on. In other works, they look to find the idea before the valuation kicks in and drives up the price.
This change is something to consider. As large corporations with market incumbency locate and procure the rights to emerging ideas and technologies, they will continue to solidify their incumbency for years to come. This change could see the the course of mankind in the hands of a few corporations. The results could be a long-term monopolistic hold on the world’s market place.