Startup Success: Five Proven Business Models

London Business School

London Business School


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Who should attend

This programme is suitable for anyone involved in startups, whether you are an aspiring entrepreneur or potential investor. Participants come from all over the world and across sectors and industries, with diverse levels of experience.

Attendees include:

  • Aspiring and existing entrepreneurs or change-makers.
  • Business founders looking to grow and scale ventures while maintaining equity.
  • Corporate professionals responsible for internal growth and innovation.
  • Individuals looking to launch a business and understand which models are most applicable for different situations.
  • Professionals seeking the models disrupting traditional businesses and how to compete with them.

About the course

Debunk the myths surrounding the startup community and revive the overlooked business models that accelerate growth.

The secrets to startup success

Unearth the insights to sustain startups by discovering the business blueprints of some of the world’s leading brands.

Good for you

  • Learn five proven business models to preserve your equity.
  • Understand how to apply the models in a variety of startup scenarios.
  • Experience a highly interactive learning environment – ask questions and solve problems through live faculty webinars.
  • Contribute to moderated discussion boards that expand your learning and foster new relationships with fellow change agents from across the globe.
  • Learn how successful firms such as Uber, Netflix and Zara funded early-stage growth, and discover the failures they bounced back from.
  • Build credibility as a founder by showing your certificate of completion.
  • Take part in the programme’s ‘Business Model Contest’. The winner receives a $5K cash prize to fund their business idea, and a one-hour consultation with Professor Mullins.

What you learn

  • Module 1 – Starting your venture: Customer funding vs. Venture capital
  • Learn and apply tools for exploring market uncertainties, and evaluate whether or not to seek VC in a new venture.
  • Module 2 – Matchmaker models: Lessons for a sustainable marketplace
  • Understand strategies for balancing supply and demand in matchmaker markets, and assess the potential challenges and opportunities faced by various matchmaker companies.
  • Module 3 – Pay-in-advance models: The importance of courage and trust
  • Learn and apply tools for developing relationships with early customers and managing cash flow using a pay-in-advance model.
  • Module 4 – Subscription and SaaS models: Making the economics work
  • Evaluate the merits and drawbacks of various subscription models across industries and understand strategies for maximising return on investment from new customers.
  • Module 5 – Scarcity and Flash Sales models: When less is more
  • Assess customer-funded scarcity models that maximise cash flow and the conditions in which those models will most likely work.
  • Module 6 – Service-to-Product models: Build it for one, then sell it to all
  • Learn how to convert a not-so-scalable service business into a highly scalable product business.
  • Module 7 – Completion week: Put a customer-funded model to work in your business
  • Assess the viability of your business idea and select a customer-funded model.
  • Module 8 – Make it happen
  • How to implement the various customer-funding models and a debrief with John Mullins on the final assignment and Q&A.

How you learn

  • Flexibly access programme content through multiple devices, allowing you to easily manage schedules and learn remotely - anytime, anywhere.
  • The learning material schedule follows a modular approach, with new content released weekly.
  • Peer learning – in the form of discussion forums and surveys – allows you to track your progress.
  • Video lectures and live teaching sessions with Q&As create an immersive, engaging learning environment, easily accessed from outside the classroom.
  • Assignments are often linked to participants' real-world situations, facilitating the practical application of concepts.
  • Our unique platform allows users to create a profile, connect and collaborate with peers, and interact with industry experts such as programme leaders, coaches and teaching assistants.

Business models discussed

  • Matchmaker models (Uber, Airbnb, eBay)
  • Pay-in-advance models (Pobble: Social enterprise to improve children’s literacy, Funovation: Entertainment, The Loot: Failure story from India)
  • Subscription and SaaS models (Netflix, Amazon Prime, Naked Wines)
  • Scarcity and Flash sales models (Zara: Fast fashion, Ryzex: Used equipment)
  • Service-to-product models (Go Viral: Video advertising)


John Mullins

An award-winning teacher and scholar and one of the world’s foremost thought leaders in entrepreneurship, John brings to his teaching and research 20 years of executive experience in high-growth retailing firms, including two ventures he founded and one he took public.  Since becoming an entrepr...

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Startup Success: Five Proven Business Models at London Business School

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Coursalytics is an independent platform to find, compare, and book executive courses. Coursalytics is not endorsed by, sponsored by, or otherwise affiliated with any business school or university.

Full disclaimer.

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