Platform Disruption is part of the geopolitical shift that is diminishing the power of the US economy in favor of China. I’m sure Americans will look back at the Obama years and puzzle over whether more could have been done to maintain US prestige as China’s economy changed phases.
I envisage a time, say three to five years from now, when platform businesses like Alibaba will control substantial segments of global trade. Global trade itself is the subject of platform disruption.
Platform disruption will substantially alter the multilateral trade governed and counted by global institutions like the IMF and World Trade Organisation. It will be direct business to consumer trade. The Alibaba platform will mediate that trade.
Alibaba expects B2C cross border trade to equal $1 trillion by 2020. That’s about 6-7% of global trade in goods.
I think within five years of that the figure will be nearer $3 trillion and much of it will be controlled by China platforms. A few months back Zennon Kapron and I wrote about it in The Chinese Road to Platform Disruption. You can download a copy here. The report also looks at how platform disruption is structured.
We’re about to publish a partner report on how Chinese Millennials are adding to the strength and power of the Chinese platform. But The China Road to Platform Disruption is a good place to being understanding the platform as a geopolitical tool.