Disruption is Good For Business

Disruption is good for business. It keeps the tech sector moving and most people in tech get that. Nearly half of global tech leaders expect either e-commerce platforms (27 percent) or social networking platforms (22 percent) to be the most disruptive business models over the next three years, according to over 740 technology industry leaders from 12 countries who participated in KPMG’s Technology Industry Innovation Survey.

The finding comes as global e-commerce spending is expected to increase from USD 3.5 trillion in 2019 to USD 6.5 trillion in 2023[1], with e-commerce giants pioneering new technologies such as AI, speech recognition, drones and autonomous vehicles.

Tim Zanni, Global Technology Sector Leader, KPMG International, said, “E-commerce giants are pioneering the use of new technologies and often disrupting other sectors like food delivery, healthcare, insurance, energy and prescription drugs, while social networking platforms are striving to capture an ever-larger percentage of consumer mind share and wallet with new offerings.”

Although tech leaders believe this disruption will be led by US companies Amazon and Apple, many believe that Chinese companies are also likely to be among the most disruptive companies in the coming years.

Philip Ng, Partner and Head of Technology, KPMG China, commented, “Among the most disruptive businesses, China and US companies dominate the list. These disruptive companies tend to drive innovation in multiple sectors, which by default will be disruptive to many other companies but also result in great utility and benefits.”

Fifteen percent believe Alibaba will be the most disruptive company, following closely behind Amazon (16 percent) and Apple (16 percent). Chinese companies Baidu (4 percent), Tencent (3 percent), Didi (2 percent) and Xiaomi (2 percent) were also named among the most disruptive.

Irene Chu, Partner and Head of New Economy & Life Sciences, Hong Kong, KPMG China, added, “While emerging technologies will certainly have widespread impact, certain industries are more susceptible to disruption than others. Telecommunications, industrial manufacturing, healthcare/life sciences, aerospace/defense, financial services, in that order, are expected to be most likely to experience the greatest transformation as a direct result of emerging technologies.”

On a personal level, global tech executives named social media apps among their favourite apps, consistent with social networking platforms ranking as the second most disruptive business model overall. However, while digital payment platforms were also ranked a highly disruptive business model, payment apps were not named as a favourite app, suggesting that full consumer adoption and reliance is still a way off.

In terms of visionaries who are leading the way in the tech world, industry leaders named Sundar Pichai, Elon Musk and Jack Ma as their top three technology innovation visionaries. Interestingly, in a separate survey of 600 millennials working in the tech industry globally, respondents made similar choices, with the top three being Elon Musk, Jack Ma and Bill Gates, but they also cited more Chinese leaders.