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What drives big business to keep getting bigger?


Bruce Howe, CEO - Putti

Did you know that last year’s Fortune 500 companies made up two-thirds of the US Economy and (even more freaky), the top 50 companies make up 50% of that revenue! Unbelievable.

Bruce Howe from Putti is back this month to share his insights on the most common factor successful businesses have when it comes to implementation of tech. And it’s not what you think.

Bruce Howe CEO Putti
Bruce Howe CEO Putti

You know when you start seeing something happen on a regular basis around you and you think you are picking up on a trend and then you read a LinkedIn post or read an article somewhere and you are like… I knew it!

My old man, who is a bit of a legend, still subscribes to magazines and when he finds something up my alley, I get the well flicked through mag for me take to the lav.  The mag this time is Fortune500.

So, do you get the feeling the big corporates are just getting bigger? Consolidation, joint ventures and buyouts seem to be dominated by a few in media nowadays.  Aren't all our startups in NZ desperate to get the attention of Microsoft, Google, Apple, Facebook or Amazon?  Smart move really as they have the money and the desperation to keeping finding value for their ever-hungry shareholders!

The numbers speak for themselves.  Last year, Fortune 500 companies,  made up two-thirds of the US Economy and, even more freaky, the top 50 companies are approx. 50% of that revenue! Their dominance grows every year!  This industry consolidation will be the trend of our modern economy for years to come unless regulators get a grip and change it up. The reality of this change happening with the US taking on Chinese economic expansion is practically zero.

New tech and big data is driving the economy for sure.

But here is the clincher… "Firms that have invested most heavily in PROPRIETARY SOFTWARE, have emerged as clear winners in the current economy, experiencing productivity, sales, and labour force gains!" (Bessen, Boston University)

This is a massive learning for all businesses small, medium and large as we are force-fed off the shelf solutions for general business applications, ERP solutions, and external facing apps.  Really, we have to think about this, if we are looking to create a differentiated business and we use the industry-standard software, then how are we going to beat the other dudes!  I mean… really!

So, surely if our industries are driven by tech and data, the investment in proprietary solutions for all businesses has to be on the table.  Fortunately, with advancements in open source tech, and with the number of good developers around, this is a realistic option today. Fully customised, proprietary software solutions are achievable to all businesses that have a healthy balance sheet.

Businesses need to get their head around the equation of spending more upfront for something unique, that brings differentiation and IP to the business, that fits because it is designed to fit current business processes, allows your teams to get more done and provides a better outcome for your customers.   The beauty of customised software as well is running costs are lower, security capability is higher and updates or new features are easier to roll out.

Here is the deal - mobile phones are the reality and how we will communicate to all customers in the future. The smartphone market globally is 76% Android and 22% Apple.  Android owns that mass market and Apple talks to the premium customer.  Acquisition of new customers is practically over and now these two are on the hunt to make the most from their platforms. 

The best experience in mobile apps is native apps.  That means bottom-up, new builds taking advantage of the operating system and the new hardware coming online.  Native applications if built in partnership with great designers and experienced developers create unique IP for any business.  They deliver a customer experience unique to the brand and deliver differentiation.  By default, templated solutions and cross-platform frameworks come up against constraints to deliver what makes good businesses great.

Hmm… I saw it coming but now it all seems a bit obvious…

Talk to Putti about a custom software solution that builds IP in your business.

Bruce Howe is CEO of Putti. Putti Apps has built apps for leading international brands including ASOS, Marks & Spencer, Aéropostale and Air Europa. Locally, they are known for NZ Herald, Wendy’s Hamburgers,, Neighbourly and many more.

Drop Bruce a line, or visit

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