Business models case studies
Augen approaches their business in several ways. One approach is to sell directly to customers using the services of a business partner to market and sell their products and services alongside those of their own.
In markets where Augen is not present, their approach is to work entirely through partners whose role it is to find business opportunities for them. This model operates in a number of different ways, for example, charging out at a certain rate from which partners add a margin or alternatively Augen charge a higher rate and give partners a percentage of the revenue.
Another option is to utilise Augen’s resources from the Vietnam operation to undertake projects in other countries and get paid as a New Zealand company. In this way they are using another country’s resources to generate revenue for their New Zealand business.
Thinking in this way has expanded Augen’s horizons so the traditional concepts of importing and exporting are no longer fundamentals that shape the way they work. Goods and services are readily accessible throughout the world and so the emphasis is instead on the selling of products and services from ‘someone’ ‘somewhere’ to ‘someone else’ ‘somewhere else’, and bringing that revenue back into New Zealand.
The challenge for entrepreneurs such as Augen is the need to be firmly focused on their ability to solve their client’s problems. Who in which country have what problems, and how can they find and bring the solutions from other countries? For instance, the leadership at Augen believes the only truly sustainable resource New Zealand has is our ability to innovate. However, the reality is that to develop innovations in a cost effective manner can only be done by taking these ideas offshore, for example, to Asia, and then selling the finished products to customers anywhere else in the world.
Since its first innovative expansion, Augen has continued to expand the business group under the same umbrella. One of the challenges has been to continue to develop an organisation able to accommodate new lines of business while continuing to sustain different multi-business environments. This has required the development of a unique management team that is able to operate within this environment and constantly adapt to new ways of working.
In order to grow their business, Augen depends on external relationships both in New Zealand and overseas. They now have a model that is not only very flexible but incorporates a mindset and culture that recognises the importance of working with other parties.
Many of the challenges come from the structural frameworks associated with having multiple businesses under one umbrella.