Results tagged “corporations”

Corporate America Hasn't Been Disrupted

By Michael Mulvey on August 14, 2014 9:12 AM

Over at FiveThirtyEight, Ben Casselman drops a spoiler on the whole "disruption" thing:

Talk to anyone in Silicon Valley these days, and it's hard to go more than two minutes without hearing about "disruption." Uber is disrupting the taxi business. Airbnb is disrupting the hotel business. Apple's iTunes disrupted the music industry, but now risks being disrupted by Spotify. Listen long enough, and it's hard not to conclude that existing companies, no matter how big and powerful, are all but doomed, marking time until their inevitable overthrow by hoodie-wearing innovators.

In fact, the opposite is true. By a wide range of measures, the advantages of incumbency in corporate America have never been greater. "The business sector of the United States," economists Ian Hathaway and Robert Litan wrote in a recent Brookings Institution paper, "appears to be getting 'old and fat.'"

Corporate America is doing fine, but why?

Consolidation is one factor:

Large companies are becoming more dominant in part by buying up their rivals. Hathaway and Litan find that, not surprisingly, most major industries have become more consolidated over time, as Wal-Mart and Starbucks have displaced corner stores and coffee shops.4 It's a lot harder to compete with a multi-billion-dollar multinational company than with an independent business.

This entrepreneur stuff makes me think about crowd funding sites like Kickstarter. They're great (I've completed 2 successful ones), but they usually kickstart projects, not businesses.

Remember, there's no reason to fret. Very soon we're not going to have to work ever again.

Corporations Can't

By Michael Mulvey on August 1, 2011 7:30 AM

My former colleague Jedd Flanscha has a great new campaign up called Corporations Can't. It points out the absurdity of how corporations have the the same legal rights as living, breathing human beings.

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Imagination At Work

By Michael Mulvey on March 28, 2011 9:02 AM

From the NYTimes:

General Electric, the nation's largest corporation, had a very good year in 2010.

The company reported worldwide profits of $14.2 billion, and said $5.1 billion of the total came from its operations in the United States.

Its American tax bill? None. In fact, G.E. claimed a tax benefit of $3.2 billion.

That may be hard to fathom for the millions of American business owners and households now preparing their own returns, but low taxes are nothing new for G.E. The company has been cutting the percentage of its American profits paid to the Internal Revenue Service for years, resulting in a far lower rate than at most multinational companies.

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