Full Stack

In an effort to better understand complex business system, I have spent a lot of time reading about interesting business models and strategies. There are a wide variety of theses to dig into, and, importantly, no universal recipe for success. That being said, I have been really interested in a few particular lenses, one of which is the “full stack model.” Contrast this with the “wedge model,” full stack companies start by offering the full service. Rather than sell to an intermediary, these full stack players bite off the whole pie and go direct to the end user.

These are generally more capital intensive businesses, but they have great potential given market adoption. They are also more likely to provide 10x value in a given space than one 

I enjoyed this framing from PG on the topic of “when you know you should just go out and beat your incumbents”: 

One company I have enjoyed reading about is Forward. They are a full stack, modern doctor’s office. Perhaps they are so much more, in that they are revolutionizing the way doctors work and patients interact with their health data. This is the future! 

I think there are lots of opportunities to build similar-type full stack companies across various service industries including haircuts, gyms, physical therapy, dentistry, etc. 

These are really hard businesses to get right with lots of moving pieces, customer education, and nuance. But I really do believe in this future. A future where “boring things” become less boring, cheaper, and better for everyone. 

This also aligns with my theory about experts and the modern economy. Ironman suits for everyone!!