Business case

Last day, I spoke with a friend of mine about making a sustainable-based business. He told me he has a friend who has a business project : selling disposable forks and knives made with organic raw materials, and thus “non poluting” products.

Great for the sustainable development ! Indeed, those organic forks and knives are :

– biodégradable because made out of corn.
– oil economical (because no plastic material made with petrol)
– Less polluting

First, we can think that this business is great for the environment as it seems less polluting than traditional disposable forks and knives. But after some reflection, I think that this business has some fallout. Indeed, imagine that we need 1 square meter of cultivated corn to make one disposable fork. The latter should have been used to feed people rather than for an industrial transformation like this.

Besides, I discovered a report on the Mosanto company which use lobbyisme and pressure over corn producteurs to impose their transgenic corn. Thus, the side effects of this are :

– Soumission of corn producters to the Mosanto policy (social negative consequence)
– Soil erosion due to the monoculture of corn (weak havoc the environment)
– Pollution by pesticide and insecticide (weak havoc the environment)
– Deforestation to conqueer more and more places to cultuvate this corn used for industry and not for food (negative consequences over the environment)

By doing so, to produce millions of disposable forks, we would need millions of square meters of corn which involves all the drawbacks cited before. Even if those forks seems ecological, their mean of production shows the contrary.

This thinking shows me that we need to think not only about the product himself to know if a product is sustainable or not, but also how this product is made. Besides, about those forks, to make them ecological, why not recycle them instead of making them from another raw material ?

If you want to red ths article in French, just visit my Pourquoi entreprendre blog 😉


Bid rivalsAs a junior account manager in an affiliation society in France, I discovered many different websites and Internet-based businesses. The following one I’ll present you was the most astonishing one I’ve discovered since that time : Bidrivals.

Indeed, this website sales many products at the lawest price possible. For instance, nathalie378 has bought a white Nintendo DSi  at only 8€ (instead of 150€ on the market). A business which is very interesting for the consumers at that time of decreasing purchasing power. Then, how such a business can sell those products at such low prices ?

Here the explanation of the business model of this website :

Bidrivals is a bid selling website. In other words, it sells many products (especially high tech products) at a begining price of 0.01€ . Then, the webuser purchases bid credits (1 credit = 0.50€) so that he may make a bid over the desired product. Each time he clicks on the offer button , the price increases by 0.01€ while spending 1 credit, and thus 0.50€. How do we know who has won the bid ? Thanks to the countdown. When the time reaches 0, then the last webuser who made the bid won the product at the final price. The webuser has the possibility to escape the game and to purchase the product at the market price.

Anyway, how the company wins money ? To explain this, we will take the previous example of nathalie378.

She won the Nitendo DSi at 8€. In other words, webusers have clicken 800 times so that the price reaches 8€ (0.01€ x 800 bids = 8€). Each time a bid is done, 0.50€ has been spent. Thus, 0.50€ (price of a credit) x 800 bids = 400€. By doing so, Bidrivals earned 400€ + 8€ = 408€. Considering the market price of this product is around 150€, we can assume the company made a 272% margin just with this sale ! Such a lucrative business !

Now you see how I was astonished by such a profitable business idea.

Click here if you want to read this article in French.