International Journal of

Business & Management Studies

ISSN 2694-1430 (Print), ISSN 2694-1449 (Online)
Busting the Myth of the Sharing Economy – A framework to analyze this new business model of sharing

Abstract


There have been numerous discussions on the sharing economy to identify the contributing factors of its success. The focuses are more on the demand side, the user behaviours, or the peculiar nature of platform business which is closely associated with this new mode of business operation. This article tries to work on the supply and operational side of the business, with an analytical framework covering four key aspects related to the assets being shared. Those are the value, ownership, geographical distribution of the assets and whether the assets are genuinely being shared. Four types of sharing businesses have been analyzed, namely, bikes, automobiles, apartments, office spaces. The outcome of the analysis is to predict the possible success or failure of any existing or new businesses in this new economic landscape. Moreover, the results of the analysis indicate that, from the supply side perspective, sharing is in fact not the key success factor, while asset ownership and its corresponding high or low maintenance cost are the more relevant considerations. The hype generated around this concept of sharing economy may have overshadowed the essence of this business model.