13 Hot Business Model Innovations To Follow in 2013

May 20, 2013 2:00 PM ET

Sustainable Brands: News & Views

Last week we started a series of four "hot lists" outlining key developments worth following in our community this year. Our first installment highlighted 13 hot sustainable products; today we look at 13 hot business model innovations that are creating new markets or transforming existing ones. Here they are

  1. A new 3D printing service by Staples — named ‘Staples Easy 3D’ — delivered by the office chain store in partnership with Ireland-based 3D printer manufacturer Mcor Technologies. Thanks to this new business line, users will be able to upload CAD or CAM files online before walking over to the nearest 3D-printing-enabled Staples to pick up respective objects coming out of a high-end 3D printer. As far as input materials go, Staples is starting out with paper objects only; however, designers, artists and many other creative types are surely already thrilled.
  2. Sprint’s BuyBack program, a profitable take-back program that gives customers credit for trading in their old phones, while helping close the loop on some valuable materials. Have a look at the in-depth description in this video for insights into the strategy and ecosystem of partners Sprint has utilized to collect four phones for every 10 it sells.
  3. SupperKing, a unique new iPhone app that aims to disrupt restaurants the same way Airbnb has disrupted the hotel industry. In the spirit of the trendy peer-to-peer economy so well-utilized by the likes of Lyft and TaskRabbit, this model allows you to sell seats at your dinner table to anyone who’s up for your cooking as an alternative to restaurants. On the other side of the two-sided markets are, of course, the users who can check out what’s cooking, book a seat at a stranger's table, rate the meal and make some new friends in the process

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