Mark Lavelle: Amazon made availability and fulfillment part of the experience. You are assured that you will get the delivery at a certain date and time. It’s not just the product that’s unique. It’s actually an entire end-to-end experience. There are companies that are doing this.
On our platform, we’ve got Graze. Who would have thought you could reinvent snacking. It’s based out of the UK. It’s a huge business that has created a subscription model for snacking. We have a similar company called Birch Box that has a subscription model.
We’ve had Abbott Labs using the Internet of Things to develop a glucose monitoring system where the doctor prescribes it to the patient but the patient logs on to an Abbott site. They receive the medicine and the device. The device is Internet-enabled and it sends a message back so that doctor can see whether the patient is taking the medicine and whether its appropriate. You have a company forging a path to the consumer but also adding value to their product by using technology.
Sramana Mitra: In the use case of Abbott Labs, how does the insurance angle play in? Is that all worked into the process?
Mark Lavelle: I assume so. What they’ve done is change the notion of what medicine is. You still have a doctor to prescribe it. Once you have that, what you’re getting is not just a bottle of medicine, you’re getting a service around that medicine that ensures that it’s effective for you. It’s solving a problem of drug prescription effectiveness. Abbott is reinventing its business that way.
I’ll give you another really cool example. If you fly in to Frankfurt airport, you can pull up a Frankfurt app on the planes and in that, you can see where the gates are and what services are available. You can see every item for sale in Frankfurt airport. You can order those things on this app. It will be collected by couriers and provided to you at the gate that knows, based on the app, what flight you’re taking out of Frankfurt.
Forget about Amazon. People are collecting and they have spare time. They have interest in buying. The sellers are there and you’re using digital technology to connect buyers and sellers to where they’re gathering. There’s s a ton of fascinating opportunities opened up by this digital trend that we’re in.
Sramana Mitra: I’m also seeing a lot of the subscription model. I assume that the Magento platform has that functionality built in. If you want to do e-commerce in a subscription mode, you have that functionality available.
Mark Lavelle: Yes, it’s very flexible.
Sramana Mitra: If you want to do subscription, you can do that through Amazon.
Mark Lavelle: Yes. In my household, all paper goods are supplied by Amazon. That’s the scary thing. They’re so good at this now. It’s not just customers searching for something to buy. The next phase of this is anticipating what a customer wants. For men who don’t like to shop, they would just send you a trunk of clothes. If you don’t like it, you can put it back in the trunk. Over time, they got very good at understanding what a particular client wanted. It’s a good time to be a consumer.