Thanks for the post. I agree with Danny’s comment that it is early to call 3G model a success. I wonder if a focus on cutting costs when times are good will leave them limited levers to pull when we slip into our next recession. What is clear though is that their “zero-based budgeting” approach is becoming an industry standard among activist investors with Nelson Peltz and Bill Ackman employing the strategy this year as well. http://blogs.wsj.com/moneybeat/2015/03/25/on-zero-based-budgeting-activists-at-knee-of-3g/ Presidential candidate Carly Fiorina has even argued to apply this strategy to the federal budget. It will be interesting to see if over the coming years this approach will be a standard bearer for successful business / operating model alignment. I wonder if you could apply this effectively to more capital intensive industries such as manufacturing where fixed costs take a much bigger slice of the pie.
Thanks for the post. I whole-heartily agree with your assessment with WeWork and the success they have had to date. You touched on this at the end, but I would be very interested to learn more about what the company is doing (if anything) to protect itself from the inevitable real estate downturn we will see in the next 2-4 years. San Francisco, with office prices per sq ft now higher than Manhattan, is witnessing an eerily similar rise in real estate prices as it did during the dot-com bubble, after which the market massively corrected. Once prices turn, WeWork will be either stuck with high inventory or forced to rent space at a big discount, making their previous investments money losers. Furthermore, if most of their customers are tech start-ups, their cyclical risk to real estate is heightened, as the number of tech-start ups dwindles rapidly in down markets when VC funding dries up. It will be interesting to see what happens in the next downturn and if they can whether the storm.
Thanks for the post – I too have flown Emirates and really enjoyed the experience. I remember reading a few articles this past spring questioning whether Emirates had gone too far in their “lean cost” operating model as their crews were ranked as having some of the longest hours in the industry. The below article details allegations that Emirates coaches pilots to under-report time on duty to avoid the aviation regulator in the UAE. I am curious as to your stance regarding these reports and whether you think the company can continue to grow “sustainably”, given that safety is immensely important in this industry.