"Profoot owes its existence to unconventional products, and its future depends on relentless innovation. "Dr. Scholl's is now owned by Bayer, which is something like an $80 billion company," explains Feldman. Profoot, by contrast, generates less than $50 million in annual revenue, although it turns a profit every year. "It just wouldn't be a very sensible strategy to go head-to-head with them," [Moi ici: A lição de David perante Golias] says Feldman. "I'm sure our entire company is their pencil budget."Enquanto lia isto pensava na lengalenga que ouvia na televisão quando era miúdo, e que ainda oiço alguns encalhados recitarem:
"But we also have tremendous advantages," says Feldman. "We can move much more quickly and come out with a product before their lawyers have figured out whether they can do this or that."
Often, Dr. Scholl's may not even want to do this or that. Ideas the giant company deems too small to pursue--"interstitial," as Feldman describes them--look like great opportunities to Profoot. "There are plenty of $5 million or $6 million angles we can occupy,"
In effect, Profoot has built a healthy business in a category dominated by a single giant by trying not to compete with it.
Profoot innovated not just materials but also the look and packaging of products, based on the mail-order catalog industry's obsession with novelty.
"I think right now we are clearly the best minds in this category," Feldman says. Alluding to Dr. Scholl's being acquired twice in seven years, he adds, "I don't know how much institutional knowledge is left at the leading brand right now."
Overall, Feldman is bullish. "We have no debt, we have never borrowed a dime, we have more product ideas than we know how to process," he says."
"As empresas grandes ficam cada vez mais grandes, só a regulação, só a intervenção do Estado impede os monopólios"A verdade é que sempre existirão empresas pequenas cheias de ganas de inovar, de experimentar, de servir melhor os clientes e, como efeito secundário, derrubam os gigantes, naturalmente.