PS: Indians here are referred to only for Emphasis!
Views expressed are entirely mine.
..From my archives.
A consistent theme in most Business case studies produced in America and taught all over the world, are phrases like “cut-throat competition”, “wafer thin margins”, “declining bottom line”, “rising costs”, “shrinking bottom line” and such scary terms. These expressions make it sound as if every goddamn business in the world is barely managing to earn two square meals a day for their promoters and employees. They haven’t spared one industry in which competition is not cut throat. Case writers, business schools and MBA ecosystem either thrive on such case studies or are simply obsessed with such a narrative of Business as usual. I look forward to reading a Harvard case study on sex toys industry soon and I am reasonably certain margins are shrinking in that business too!
A fallout of such an education laced with excessive use of such phraseology can be dangerous. esp. in countries like India where there is literally NO competition in MANY businesses. This (teaching of American case studies) is probably one of the reasons why most educated Indians, esp. MBA’s are scared at the idea of starting something of their own. They perhaps actually end up believing that there is indeed a lot of competition and hence it may not be a good idea to venture on their own (but are quick to decry the “evil” corporations who are making good monies "sucking their blood and sweat")
Just this evening when I fancied a good coffee around the so called “posh area” of the city where I operate from, I could figure out only two extreme options viz. Small taprees (tea shacks where I am unsure when the cups were last sanitized) where I can get something that feels like coffee for 15 Rupees (25 US cents approx.). The other option was Cafe Coffee Day where a takeaway cappuccino set me off by 130 Rupees (approx. 2.20 USD). Then there is Starbucks where a cappuccino costs the same it does in NYC. Local everything but International prices. There was absolutely nothing in between. In the whole price band of Rs.10 to Rs.130 there is no organized player in the hot beverage market in the entire country.
Given the rising middle class incomes and the average dispensation to spend money on stuff like coffee, I am certain there is a room for at least 5 players in between these two extremes. A clear differentiation in branding and service is also possible if one is creative.
I look forward to see some unemployed or an underemployed enterprising MBA to cash in this opportunity before an “evil” MNC major decides to start a new coffee chain in this segment. Now that enough Venture capitalists are here to fund. This certainly does not need foreign direct investments that Narendra Modi is aggressively pitching for though I welcome the idea of competition at ANY cost.