Look into B2B Market and Corporate Offices

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B2B Market

A market that is established in the use of alternative solutions to ownership are companies. Corporate groups understand directly in their balance sheet the benefits of not being asset heavy, so the benefit is immediately tangible in comparison to the residential application. I divided the solutions in five categories, with some examples and best applicability below.

We can learn from those initiatives to shift our mindset from “owning” to “solving a personal need”, which does not require necessarily to buy something. Our mindset has already shifted for some of the items, for instance, the subscription model is heavily used in our houses with Spotify, as opposed to buying physical CDs, or Netflix. However, there is still a lot of room to explore other business models below to bring it available to residential use, as an entrepreneur and as a consumer.

  1. LEASE: The provider typically controls and maintain the objects. Companies tend to lease assets that will have continuous use for a longer period.
    • Leased office equipment, such as copy machines (Xerox)
    • Leased industrial and heavy machinery (in the construction sector, for instance, which can also be rented)
        • If it is an Operating Lease, it is not needed to maintain the product. The provider is typically responsible for doing routine maintenance and to supply another product in case it stops to work.
        • Frequently, the lessee can buy the asset at the end of the leasing period for its residual amount, if that proves to be beneficial.
        • However, in the business case, leasing does come with accounting obligations in the balance sheet.
  1. RENT: The customer pays access to the object. Usually rental is for a shorter period of time than a lease, with no accounting obligations, but also subjected to change of price and conditions easier than a lease.
        • Assets that are used just in special occasions or punctual situations, for instance furniture and infrastructure for a conference or roadshow, will not create a problem of storage and maintenance afterwards.
  1. SUBSCRIPTION: On going services, usually on digital form, such as software licenses (not acquiring the software) and photo stock websites
        • Usually there are updates that the subscription will cover, for instance a new software version.
  1. POOL / SHARING: one product is used by many customers, can be from one company only or a consortium with many companies in a building, for instance, as part of a condominium benefit.
    • It is very common in offices to have a car pool that employees share during office times, for example to visit clients. Other transportation means, such as bikes, are often also included.
    • Services can also be shared, for instance one reception for several offices.
        • Asset is still readily available, although it does not belong to only one person/business.
        • It reduces idle time of using the asset, hence also reducing costs.
  1. PAY-PER-USE: when the service or product is not frequently used, there is the possibility of paying for it just when necessary. For example, companies that do not make copies or print often, and instead of leasing or owning a copy/printer, just use the copy shop.

This is definitely not an extensive list of services available, but a start point to learn from this market and apply the same mindset, not only for owning less things, being sustainable, declutter and “spark joy” (getting on board of the trending KonMari method) but also realizing that it can be financially beneficial for our households. Looking forward hearing more opinions and/or examples!

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