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The Death of Walmart: Mom and Pop Are Back or Everything as a Service (XaaS)

4/12/2017 5:56 PM

Nobody likes Walmart.  They are who they are, however, for several good reasons: purchasing power, warehousing, distribution, marketing, merchandising and most importantly, because it makes the rest of the enterprise go, financing.  They have just about killed any small business who used to compete with them with these very powerful tools.

But with today's technology, cloud based applications Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS) and Software as a Service (SaaS), smaller businesses can compete on a more level playing field with the giants of industry.

Because you only pay for what you use or pay a subscription fee, Sentia can write enterprise software for dozens or hundreds  of (or thousands or millions or all of them) small businesses, to give them even better capabilities than their huge competitors, on things that software can automate.  This gives mom and pop business owners the ability to do what they do best: providing great products and great services.

While its true that the solution will be a one size fits all, business is a one size fits all kind of endeavor.  Every one fills out the same tax return has the same generally accepted accounting principles, has fixed and variable costs, capitalized equipment, sales and so on.  what we foresee doing is providing all the tools to manage a small business in an enterprise kind of way, but at a low cost.

This doesn't, however, give a small business the purchasing power, distribution, marketing and other abilities that the large business possess.  Once we have several business using Sentia's software we can leverage the power of numbers and start providing more and more services, like these, to our members.  We can purchase warehouse and distribution center space for our members.  We can eventually provide logistical and delivery support.  We can offer a captive insurance company that provides health insurance for a company's employees, and we can do all this collectively, and we can do it with even more power than the Walmarts of the world, because collectively we are far larger.

It isn't just about what Sentia can do either.  Once our members start using each other exclusively, costs plummet.  Maybe Molly's Bakery needs a sign that Joe's Sign Company can produce.  Maybe Joe keeps his sign creating materials in the same warehouse that Molly keeps her bulk baking supplies.  We can automatically send the materials for making a new sign to Molly's shop with Molly's next flour delivery.  Joe makes more money because his costs are lower since he warehoused and shipped his materials with Molly's, and he can pass that savings on to Molly.  In the end, everyone wins.  Molly's customers get great cupcakes at an affordable price, Joe makes more money than ever through built in marketing in the "collective" and the corporate, faceless Walmarts of the world get left out in the cold.

All we need is a great software company to design and build the applications that do all this for us and coordinate the management of everything.  I just happen to know a likely suspect.

The only thing we are missing is a snappy name.  How about "Everything as a Service (XaaS)?"

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