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Professors granted two year Tekes funding for research of digital marketplaces

The purpose of this research is to increase understanding of the structure, logistics and management of marketplaces.
Professor Lasse Mitronen (left), Professor Jim Kijima and Professor Arto Lindblom in front of the headquarters of Japan's largest e-commerce corporation Rakuten in October 2015.

The objective of the Tekes funded research projects, which will be kicked off by professors from the School of Business in January 2016, will be to increase the understanding of digital marketplaces and the ecosystems, structures, operating logic and management methods that form around them.

Digital marketplaces are electronic trade platforms, in which goods and services are sold and traded. The world's best known marketplaces are Alibaba, Amazon, Rakuten and eBay. Hundreds of millions of users from around the world visit the marketplaces in question daily. E-commerce marketplaces have become more common in Finland predominantly as places for consumer-to-consumer trade. The development and commercial utilisation of electronic marketplaces is still in its infancy in Finland.

'On one hand, our research project will help identify the commercial potential linked to digital marketplaces both locally in Finland and internationally in different market areas. On the other hand, the project can help us find new practical solutions and operating models for utilising market places in the procurements value-chain,' Professor Arto Lindblom explains.

The research project will be realised by analysing successful electronic marketplaces in Japan, the United States and Europe, which have experienced strong growth. Researchers will carry out in-depth study of these leading marketplaces in an effort to identify the field's best practices and innovative solutions for the development and commercial utilisation of marketplaces. A second objective is to identify the direction in which marketplaces are developing and the new types of competence requirements their administration will necessitate.

'The examination of international marketplaces can help us produce new information on the marketing of marketplaces, models for promoting sales, building and maintaining customer relationships and the utilisation of customer feedback and in-depth customer understanding in the creating of a product range and improved provision,' Professor Lasse Mitronen outlines.

The research project will be carried out at the Aalto University School of Business' Department of Marketing. In addition to Tekes, the project will receive funding from Kesko, Posti, Unilever and Descom. The overall budget for the project will be 600,000 euros. In addition to practical information, the research project will also produce important theoretical implications linked to marketplaces.

Further information:
Professor Arto Lindblom
Aalto University School of Business
[email protected]

Professor of Practice Lasse Mitronen
Aalto University School of Business
[email protected]

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