Föhrenbergkreis Finanzwirtschaft

Unkonventionelle Lösungen für eine zukunftsfähige Gesellschaft

Archive for 26. Juli 2019

What Microsoft’s revival can teach other tech companies

Posted by hkarner - 26. Juli 2019

Date: 25-07-2019
Source: The Economist

But it is still not perfect

It must feel good to be back on top—and this time, almost liked. Twenty years ago Microsoft was considered an evil empire, scheming for domination and embroiled in a bruising antitrust battle with America’s Justice Department. Five years ago, having dozed through the rise of social media and smartphones, it was derided as a doddery has-been. Now, after several stellar quarters—this month it reported revenue of $33.7bn, up by 12% year on year—Microsoft is once again the world’s most valuable listed company, worth over $1trn. How did Satya Nadella, the boss since 2014, pull off this comeback? And with American trustbusters starting on a new review (see article) of “search, social media, and some retail services online”—ie, Google, Facebook and Amazon—what can the other tech giants learn from Microsoft’s experience?

First, be prepared to look beyond the golden goose. Microsoft missed social networks and smartphones because of its obsession with Windows, the operating system that was its main moneyspinner. One of Mr Nadella’s most important acts after taking the helm was to deprioritise Windows. More important, he also bet big on the “cloud”—just as firms started getting comfortable with renting computing power. In the past quarter revenues at Azure, Microsoft’s cloud division, grew by 68% year on year, and it now has nearly half the market share of Amazon Web Services, the industry leader.

Second, rapaciousness may not pay. Mr Nadella has changed Microsoft’s culture as well as its technological focus. The cult of Windows ordained that customers and partners be squeezed and rivals dispatched, often by questionable means, which led to the antitrust showdown. Mr Nadella’s predecessor called Linux and other open-source software a “cancer”. But today that rival operating system is more widely used on Azure than Windows. And many companies see Microsoft as a much less threatening technology partner than Amazon, which is always looking for new industries to enter and disrupt. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

Posted in Artikel | Verschlagwortet mit: , , , | Leave a Comment »

The regulatory woes of Big Tech multiply

Posted by hkarner - 26. Juli 2019

Date: 25-07-2019
Source: The Economist

But the titans may yet emerge unscathed

“How did you go bankrupt?…Gradually and then suddenly.” Many technology entrepreneurs know this quote, from a novel by Ernest Hemingway—and often, from experience. The words have, of late, taken on new meaning. After years during which tech’s titans could do no wrong, they are now being pulled into a vortex of regulatory woes that make headlines almost daily. Big Tech is not about to implode. But will it come out intact?

The latest burst of antitrust activity came on July 24th, when Facebook said that the Federal Trade Commission (ftc), an American regulatory agency, had launched an investigation into the company. The news came soon after the ftc released details of a much-anticipated privacy settlement with the firm.

The social network will pay a $5bn fine for violating a previous privacy deal with the ftc. But Facebook also agreed to formalise its privacy processes, for instance by creating a special committee on its board and by designating compliance officers. Its boss, Mark Zuckerberg, will also have to certify the firm’s compliance—which could make him personally liable should Facebook fail to get its act together.

A day earlier, America’s Department of Justice announced that it would look into how big online platforms have achieved market power and whether they abuse it. The doj did not say which firms it had in mind, but Google is likely to be one. The department’s lawyers are reportedly already preparing to investigate it.

Trustbusters on the other side of the Atlantic—who have already fined Google more than €8.2bn ($9.3bn) in recent years—are not resting on their laurels. On July 17th Margrethe Vestager, the European Union’s competition regulator, announced that her department had opened an investigation into whether Amazon uses the data it collects from merchants’ sales on its sites to push its own products. Insiders expect the eu’s next target will be Apple, which stands accused of using its control of the app store on its iPhones to favour its own services, mainly Apple Music. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

Posted in Artikel | Verschlagwortet mit: , , , | Leave a Comment »

Boris Johnson Turns to Maverick Brexit Architect to Deliver EU Split

Posted by hkarner - 26. Juli 2019

Date: 26-07-2019
Source: The Wall Street Journal

Prime Minister Boris Johnson puts the blunt political strategist in charge of making sure the U.K. can get out of the EU

Dominic Cummings

LONDON—Dominic Cummings, an architect of the 2016 British referendum campaign to leave the European Union, has spent the past three years railing against the government for its failure to break with the bloc.

Now the fate of Brexit lies partly in his hands.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Wednesday named the 47-year-old Mr. Cummings as one of his most senior advisers, putting the blunt political strategist in charge of making sure the U.K. can get out of the EU in just over three months.

Mr. Cummings hasn’t been shy about criticizing the government’s handling of Brexit so far. In his blog he trashed British civil servants and even senior euroskeptic lawmakers who he said were “too busy shooting or skiing or chasing girls to do any actual work.”

“He has got a reputation as a maverick genius,” says Tim Bale, professor of politics at Queen Mary University of London. “But also someone who tends to rub people up the wrong way and enjoys doing so.”

Placing a critic of the British establishment at the heart of Downing Street points to the gamble Mr. Johnson is making as he plays hardball to get out of the EU by Oct. 31. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

Posted in Artikel | Verschlagwortet mit: , , , | Leave a Comment »