Friday 4 August 2006

Business Model for Measurement Repository tool using Open Source

ADI should build a business around the Measurement Repository tool it is building by using an Open Source business model.
ADI is about to develop an in house Measurement Repository tool to address CMMI requirements for project measures.
This will be an effective, professional tool that has the potential to be sold to the broader community. There are currently no plans to sell the tool as the cost of promotion probably outweigh potential sales.
ADI would do well to Open Source the core Measurement Repository software and make money by selling services to the Software.
Key benefits from open sourcing the software include:
  • ADI can sell software module enhancements for enterprise customers.
  • ADI can sell support to enterprise customers.
  • Open source developers will enhance the software and ADI will benefit from these enhancements.
Key requirements needed to make this business model a sucess.
  • The software needs to be built upon Open Source components so that users can download a free product.
  • ADI needs to retain ownership of the source code.
An excellent example of how this business model has been applied is Sugar CRM as explained in an interview at

Thursday 3 August 2006

How to innovate in a large company

For a large company to behave as inovators, it needs to set up small, disconnected divisions within the company which can act like a startup company. This is the theme of a speech by Mark Bregman, chief technology officer of Symantec.
My employer could do well to take note. Two of my employer's key values are:
  • Develop People
  • Behave as Entrepeneurs and Innovators
I've been actively trying to build a new business line within my company based on building Geospatial Open Source solutions. My goal has been to win small contracts, build credability and then become a contendor for larger work. We have had a few wins but have had more lost opportunities because:
  • The opportunities are small and have not been given the priority required for small jobs.
  • The processes of large contracts are being forced upon small jobs and making ADI uncompetitive.
Typically, large companies buy small innovative companies to get inovation into their product suite. However this has downsides:
  • It is usually difficult to retrofit products from the small company with existing products in the large company.
  • Innovative employees from the small company are less likely to want to work in a large company without an opportunity to innovate.