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  • Writer's pictureDoug Howarth

How To Lose $1B

Irony is wasted on the stupid – Oscar Wilde In his 9/1/2021 article, Jon Hemmerdinger discovered Aerion, a company tied to its AS-2 supersonic business jet (C), was going to put its assets up for sale (E).  He further found Aerion had hired Development Specialists (DS) to manage the process, and DS had “not set a sale price, saying, ‘The market will tell them what their assets are worth.’” I nearly choked on the irony – Now they knew market reactions counted.  They sure didn’t previously. Had they studied their Demand Frontier (D) before they started, they would have known while there was a possibility of hitting their targeted sale figure of 300 units in a decade, those chances were slim. The US Presidential Helicopter program had a similar fate, failing to realize its Demand limits (A, B), and lost over $4B. The USG sold it for parts at four cents on each dollar spent. Aerion will sell intellectual property; its AS2 didn’t go into production.  Maybe they can get a dime on the dollar.  Based on their $4B development cost estimate, they likely spent $1B by the time they stopped. Next time, model the market first.  It costs a tiny fraction of the losses suffered forgoing market analysis. #hypernomics #innovation #technology #management #markets
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