Here are some of the nuggets from the MIT Enterprise 3.0 event last night:
* If you are an entrepreneur looking for opportunities to focus on, there are white spaces in the portfolios of larger players like Microsoft, Google and Cisco, especially in the area of Prosumer productivity and collaboration. Probably more built-to-flip models.
* SME is a big open space, and Software-As-a-Service (SaaS) coupled with subscription-fee business model, web/phone sales model, and internet-based delivery models makes SME business apps viable.
* Verticals, especially those with discontinuity, are good places to look. Media industry is full of discontinuity.
* Extended Enterprise is full of opportunities, especially around identity, security, and collaboration. Identity is a hairy problem, probably for the big boys to solve, with some Standards.
* Horizontal apps can be bootstrapped cost-effectively using SaaS platforms like Salesforce.com that they are OEM’ing.
* Indirect business models are worth exploring, like business apps supported by advertising or data services. PayScale is a good example.
* Enterprises are seeing much higher adoption of technology today than they saw in the client server / fat client days, as software is becoming easier to use in general. The driving factor is from the consumer side, with Web 2.0 type of apps, as well as the introduction of iPhone-style usability innovation. If you can come up with small apps that solve a problem and are extremely easy to use, you can gain enterprise adoption without going through IT, something impossible in Enterprise 1.0 or Enterprise 2.0.
Webex, eFax, YouSendIt, are good examples of such applications.