FLOOW2 is the first business-to-business sharing marketplace that enables companies and institutions to share overcapacity of equipment, knowledge and skills of personnel. Users can register on the platform for free and participants pay a subscription to advertise their equipment on the platform, providing a revenue stream for FLOOW2.
FLOOW2 facilitates the sharing of overcapacity of business equipment and the skills & knowledge of personnel that are under-utilised for half of the time, by making it transparent and tradable on their platform. The platform is currently operational worldwide with a rapid global expansion plan envisaged.
There are many existing business models based on collaborative consumption, however they primarily focus on consumers and peer-to-peer sharing. Meanwhile, FLOOW2 focuses on the sharing activities between companies in a huge range of sectors, from construction to healthcare.
I foresee the sharing economy becoming an integral part of the future. It will be inevitable for any good and responsible entrepreneur. No business in the world will be able to go without asset sharing anymore. FLOOW2 is sustainable, brings financial benefits and strengthens the social cohesion between organizations and people. Multiple value creation at its finest.
FLOOW2 sees its platform as a win-win for businesses because companies who have committed the upfront capital investment on equipment can increase their revenue through using the platform to rent out any equipment and personnel not being deployed at full capacity. It also gives other companies access to equipment they need at rental prices that make it worthwhile as an alternative to investing in and owning the equipment.
Advances in ICT and social media have contributed to collaborative consumption’s viability and FLOOW2 have designed an offering that enables businesses to take advantage of this trend. The key to a collaborative consumption business model’s success is its ability to demonstrate to potential clients that the convenience of having access to equipment has more or equal benefits to owning the goods themselves. FLOOW2 has designed the customer interface of their platform bearing this in mind.
Registration on the platform is free, enabling users to access an online planning tool for project managing equipment requirements and availability. The company also provide additional services, like online payments services, credit checks, tracking and trace service on assets and insurance through partnerships with other businesses. Participants pay a subscription to advertise their equipment on the platform, providing a revenue stream for FLOOW2.
The FLOOW2 platform represents a shift from the existing vertical model to a horizontal model which empowers many smaller actors to work together and do business together rather than relying solely on relationships with larger suppliers. FLOOW2 creates an additional relationship in the marketplace potentially reducing barriers to entry, because there is an opportunity for a start-up that has the sales pipeline and project management skills to conduct business without having to invest in the equipment it uses, given the vast free capacities in most probably close proximity.
One of the key barriers to medium and large companies switching to a model like FLOOW2 is the mindset change required to shift from ownership to access. Asset sharing is a new business process within most organisations, and requires a different approach to traditional operations and procurement practices. To assist with this change, FLOOW2 have developed six essential steps to asset sharing:
When businesses implement asset sharing into their organization, they should be aware of the professional game they’re playing. Asset sharing is an additional, value creating, business model so organizations should treat is as one and put in the proper amount of effort. Implementation is easy, and can be done in six simple steps.
There is no question that FLOOW2 is a disruptive business model which, based on its design, has the potential to expand globally and be applied to multiple products and sectors. The founders of FLOOW2 have had the foresight to develop a solution that overcomes the key barriers which have up until now prevented the B2B sector adopting collaborative consumption.
For further information visit the FLOOW2 website.
This case study was researched and co-authored by Geraldine Brennan, Doctoral Researcher, EPSRC Centre for Innovative Manufacturing in Industrial Sustainability, CEP, Imperial College London