Recently, I noticed Grundig claiming to be a “tech company”. It made me cringe.
Just because Grunding TV connects to Alexa, does it make Grundig a tech company?
Isn’t Grunding a consumer goods company?
It does use technology to produce consumer goods. But does that suffice to call a company a “technology company”?
Technology means anything that helps us produce things more efficiently.
If you use the term technology in that respect, in the 21st century, that means all companies are tech companies.
Let’s see what Clayton Christensen, the author of The Innovator’s Dilemma has to say about this:
“Most new technologies foster improved product performance. I call these sustaining technologies. Some sustaining technologies can be discontinuous or radical in character, while others are of an incremental nature. What all sustaining technologies have in common is that they improve the performance of established products, along the dimensions of performance that mainstream customers in major markets have historically valued. Most technological advances in a given industry are sustaining in character.”
According to Christensen, sustaining technologies make existing products better, and that strengthens current businesses.
“Disruptive technologies bring to a market a very different value proposition than had been available previously. Generally, disruptive technologies underperform established products in mainstream markets. But they have other features that a few fringe (and generally new) customers value. Products based on disruptive technologies are typically cheaper, simpler, smaller, and, frequently, more convenient to use.”
According to Christensen’s description, if your technology doesn’t change the competitive landscape and adopting technology doesn’t make it unique, you are not a tech company.
By that definition, I would argue that Grundig is not a technology company.