Hi Lisa, great read 🙂 I hadn’t heard of WP before arriving in the US so I’ve enjoyed catching up on the excitement around this new brand. It seems that a critical part of their initial strategy was the customer’s ability to receive five pairs of glasses in the mail. In thinking about these types of strategies for developing countries, the local postal systems present a significant challenge, as they are not sufficiently reliable or honest to deliver goods timeously or at all in some instances. The cost of sending these items through a more secure channel is often prohibitive, unfortunately. I hope that we will be able to innovate in Southern Africa to create delivery models that complement online beginnings for startups!
Anish, this was also my reaction upon reading the article. However, I’m now thinking about operations in terms of the different characteristics of successful manufacturing versus innovation/R&D. It makes sense that the organisational structure and culture impact the degree of free thinking and collaboration for innovation, which I hadn’t factored into my thinking on operational models previously.
I would be interested to understand more about the value-added services that TriMark offers, such as the monitoring of supply levels that you mentioned. What form would this type of tool take and what level of integration is required?
It would also be interesting to know more about their customer strategy. Have they partnered with all of the big hotel chains? Do they sell to retail customers at all?