Business Model Generation Playbook

Value Network

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Important for this playbook

A value network is a system of organizations, individuals, and resources that work together to create and deliver value. There are many different value network models that businesses can use, each with its own advantages and disadvantages. In this article, we will take a look at some of the common value network models and how they are related.

Collaboration and Partnership

The “Joint Venture,” “Brands Consortium,” and “Affiliation” models all involve collaboration and partnership between different organizations. In a joint venture, two or more organizations come together to pursue a specific business objective, while a brands consortium involves a group of companies coming together to achieve a common goal. Affiliation involves an agreement between two organizations to work together, usually with one organization promoting the other’s products or services. These models allow businesses to share resources, skills and risks to achieve mutual benefits.

Intermediaries and Middlemen

The “Integrator,” “Omnichannel,” “Layer Player,” “No Middle Man,” “Orchestrator,” “Platform as a Service,” and “Virtualization” models all involve intermediaries and middlemen in the value network. An Integrator coordinates and streamlines the different parts of the value chain, while Omnichannel allows customers to shop through multiple channels. Layer Player provides a specific service or product that integrates into the value chain, No Middle Man allows direct access to customers or suppliers, an orchestrator manages and optimizes the value chain and Platform as a Service and Virtualization provide access to shared resources and infrastructure. These models allow businesses to leverage the expertise and resources of intermediaries to create and deliver value.

These business models are part of the Business Model Patterns printed card deck.

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Affiliation illustration



Help others sell your products

Bounties illustration



Offer rewards to an unknown crowd for reaching specified outcomes

Brands Consortium illustration


Brands Consortium

Pool resources across brands to create projects that benefit all members

Drop Ship illustration


Drop Ship

Send directly from wholesaler to customer without maintaining inventory

Integrator illustration



Take control of all resources and capabilities going into value creation

Joint Venture illustration


Joint Venture

Gather the power of multiple businesses to stand stronger together

Layer Player illustration


Layer Player

Produce more efficiently by specializing in only one value-adding step

Multi-Sided Market illustration


Multi-Sided Market

Bring together two or more distinct and independent groups of customers

No Middle Man illustration


No Middle Man

Skip the intermediary and deliver directly to customers

Omnichannel illustration



Seamlessly merge customer experiences across contact channels

Orchestrator illustration



Direct the value chain

Peer-to-Peer illustration



Mediate interactions between private individuals in a homogeneous group

Platform as a Service illustration


Platform as a Service

Enable ubiquitous and on-demand access to a shared pool of resources

Revenue Sharing illustration


Revenue Sharing

Extend value creation by creating symbiotic effects between stakeholders

Self-Service illustration



Transfer part of the value creation to the customer

Shop in Shop illustration


Shop in Shop

Let a brand owner take space in another company’s retail space

Virtualization illustration



Imitate a traditional physical process in a virtual environment

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