The Business of European Platforms: How Digital Intermediaries in E-Commerce, Food Delivery, Health and Care, and Social Networking Manage Value and Compete
Friederici, N., Reischauer, G. & Lehdonvirta, V.
Digital platforms are powerful intermediaries that play an important role in shaping today’s economies and societies. In the eyes of both the public and regulators, the platform economy is defined by dominant companies like Google, Amazon, Facebook, Apple, and Microsoft (GAFAM) – globally operating tech giants that each operate multiple platforms. These large platform companies are known for building and exploiting large indirect network effects (the more users, the higher the value of the platform for other users). They offer users convenient and now ubiquitous products that have become the infrastructures for the digital economy (such as app stores, search engines, messengers and social networks). Almost all the global platforms were created and are still headquartered in the United States and, more recently, China.