‘Winners and Losers will stand the test of time. It provides, in a single place, the best case histories of winners and losers in the age of the Internet – an age that is changing competition for all time to come – that I have ever read.
Levis carefully observes what has happened, meticulously teases out the similarities among the cases, and tests those observations against the experience of companies with less successful histories to determine what works and what does not. He goes beyond the cliches and quick answers to give us a deep appreciation for why understanding the history of these companies may, in the end, be the best way to understand their future – and the future for all of us.’
Richard Foster, author of Creative Destruction
‘A highly intelligent, nuanced account and Levis’ disclaimers are as salutary as his insights.’
‘A solid account of smart, nimble upstarts slaying old-industry behemoths and of flawed creative geniuses creating and destroying fortunes.’
David Rowan, Observer
‘Compelling… Break-neck histories of the likes of Amazon, eBay and Google.’
‘I thoroughly enjoyed Kieran Levis’ Winners and Losers: Creators and Casualties of the Age of the Internet, a collection of case-studies of businesses that have thrived or tanked as a result of their relationship to technology. From record companies to IBM, from Sony to Webvan, from Google to Nokia, Levis examines the clunkers and the strokes of genius (or luck) that made headlines for each firm as it coped with the ‘net’s disruptivity.
After each case-study, Levis tries to extract the principles embodied by the decisions that led to the companies’ fate [. . .] and by getting all this meaty context about what worked and for whom, I felt better equipped to make decisions about my own strategies in the future.
Cory Doctorow, www.boingboing.net
Indispensable for anyone interested in how businesses today really work.
Brian O’Grady, Irish Independent
Levis’ Winners and Losers is mainly about the people who, over three decades, have created markets where none existed.
In each case, Levis provides a readable digest of what is already known, and debunks an urban myth or two. . . . As he shatters these myths, Levis uncovers something interesting: many of these world-changing enterprises had no business plan when they started, and so the process of orderly investment appraisal so beloved of Lord Mandelson and his civil servants doesn’t apply.
Levis is good on the things that distinguish new markets from mature ones. In most radically new markets, for example, the need that the innovation addresses has never been clearly articulated before (so there’s no relevant market research data); business models often seem bizarre; and at the outset it’s ‘unclear who will sell what to whom, if indeed any money does pass hands’.
John Naughton, Management Today