Saturday, June 22, 2024

Identifying the Success Factors of Startups: Insights from BCG’s Tibor Merey on Web3 and Blockchain Technologies


Boston Consulting Group’s Tibor Merey: What’s the difference between a failed startup and a unicorn?

In a fascinating presentation at the London Blockchain Conference, Tibor Merey, Managing Director and Partner at the Boston Consulting Group (BCG), shared insights on what separates successful startups from those that fail, specifically focusing on the burgeoning world of Web3 and blockchain technologies. The discussion, part of the Best Practices for Enterprise Adoption track, delved into the practicalities of launching Web3 business initiatives, a field where Merey and BCG have extensive experience, advising on over 180 blockchain and Web3 projects.

The presentation started with a simple yet revealing interactive query: Merey asked attendees to indicate their direct involvement in Web3 or blockchain projects. A majority raised their hands, but when asked if they were receiving more client demand than they could handle, most hands were lowered. This led to Merey’s critical point: the importance of business value over mere technical features in blockchain solutions. Drawing from a survey of decision-makers with investment power in blockchain technologies, Merey highlighted that these individuals prioritize business value above all else, listing technical attributes significantly lower in their criteria.

Merey outlined the evolution of Web3 technology, marking the current phase as ’embedded Web3′ or ’embedded blockchain’. This stage involves integrating blockchain technology deeply into corporate supply chains worldwide, indicating significant investment and interest from both financial and tech sectors. This development, according to Merey, positions blockchain as a key protocol layer for the augmented world’s future transactions and relationships.

He further illustrated this with real-world use cases. For instance, Tracr, a venture BCG built for DeBeers, leverages blockchain for providing indisputable proof of diamond provenance. Similarly, for Klockner, a German steel manufacturer, BCG developed a digital product passport that verifies the carbon footprint of their green-steel products using blockchain. Another example, Eherisc, utilizes smart contracts and Oracle technology for immediate insurance claim payouts, demonstrating blockchain’s versatility across different industries.

Merey also touched upon the financial implications of blockchain technology. He mentioned the growing trend of asset tokenization, predicting that by 2030, $16 trillion worth of assets, ranging from securities to real-world items, will be tokenized. This, he believes, will pave the way for a much more innovative and decentralized financial system.

Despite these advances, Merey stressed that adoption remains the ultimate goal. To this end, he posited four crucial questions that anyone with a Web3 or blockchain business idea must answer — in a specific order. However, during a lively Q&A session, when asked about the distinction between unsuccessful startups and those that become unicorns, Merey referred back to these foundational questions. He observed that failures typically occur when addressing the initial two questions. He emphasized the importance of early customer engagement, potentially with just a prototype or a landing page, to gather valuable feedback. This customer-focused approach, promoted by BCGX, BCG’s build unit, is pivotal for navigating the path from a nascent idea to a successful, scalable enterprise.

This insight from Tibor Merey not only underscored the dynamic potential of blockchain technology across various sectors but also provided a blueprint for aspiring entrepreneurs looking to make their mark in the Web3 space. The difference between a failed startup and a unicorn, it seems, lies in understanding and delivering business value, prioritizing customer needs, and effectively navigating the complex terrain of adoption and scalability.

Alex Sterling
Alex Sterling
Alex Sterling is a seasoned journalist with over a decade of experience covering the dynamic world of business and finance. With a keen eye for detail and a passion for uncovering the stories behind the headlines, Alex has become a respected voice in the industry. Before joining our business blog, Alex reported for major financial news outlets, where they developed a reputation for insightful analysis and compelling storytelling. Alex's work is driven by a commitment to provide readers with the information they need to make informed decisions. Whether it's breaking down complex economic trends or highlighting emerging business opportunities, Alex's writing is accessible, informative, and always engaging.

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