To tap the rising popularity of digital services, a leading fixed-mobile telecommunications operator launched a new business unit focused on the sourcing and delivery of digital content, both for its recently launched IPTV offer, as well as its mobile content and VAS offering.
As in other markets, in Saudi Arabia, the rapidly expanding availability of fixed and mobile broadband ushered in a massive surge in the consumption of digital content in the Kingdom. Between 2009 and 2015, the number of Internet users doubled as smartphones and tablets flooded into the market. As a result, by 2013, Saudi Arabia was the largest per capita consumers of Youtube videos globally, and now averages more than 90 million video views every day.
To tap the rising popularity of digital services, a leading fixed-mobile telecommunications operator launched a new business unit. The unit was part of broader Innovation and Corporate Venturing effort into the digital media sector. This unit was focused on the sourcing and delivery of digital content, both for its recently launched IPTV offer, as well as its mobile content and VAS offering. The new business unit needed to set clear short- and long-term goals on the direction it would take to support its parent company in meeting the digital content needs of its customer base. It also needed a strategy for marketing to its parent company’s customer base, Internet users more generally, and future Internet users still to come online.
As with the Internet, the possibilities for the new firm seemed extremely broad, if not quite endless. It needed to map out how it would select content, source it, package it, and deliver it. It also needed to determine how to organize its workforce, structure the financials, define processes, and reach out to its parent’s current and potential customers.
To complicate matters, the new unit’s management was all new. Yes they were talented and well educated. They had far more ideas on where the company should go and how it should get there than was possible given their resources and the market context. Moreover, they were not aligned with each other or with the goals and strategy of the parent company, preventing the type of decisive action needed to make the new company a success.
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