Taking the most of intangible assets creates strong competitive advantage

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A glance at McKinsey’s to read one of their latest production : “Using Power Curves to assess industries dynamics“.

A survey based on  150 companies revenue shows that performance doesn’t follow a bell curve but a “power curve” that shows that most companies in a given indistry are above the average. What, said differently, means that few leaders take the biggest part of he revenue and only leave crumbs to the others. Said my way it means that many companies are failing to keep up, what is not an issue in a context of growth when it’s always easy to make feasts with lots of crumbles but is worrying in the current times.

One interesting point of the survey, even if thinking it explains everything would be naive, is about the exploitation of intangible assets in a given industy. In this case the curve is more pronounced than for industries using more conventional assets.

Power curves are also promoted by intangible assets—talent, networks, brands, and intellectual property—because they can drive increasing returns to scale, generate economies of scope, and help differentiate value propositions.

This survey is sectional. I would have liked to know what makes the diffrenece inside a given industry, that’s to say if the impact of intangible assets was likely to be as imporant in “tangible assets” oriented industry  where immaterial capital would have (or not) a major role if it was more taken into account.