Larry Downes

Leading E-commerce Strategist; Author, Unleashing the Killer App

Co-Author of Unleashing the Killer Apps: Digital Strategies for Market Dominance. The book describes how executives can redefine the rules of their companies, industries, and relationships by acknowledging digital technology as the leading source of business disruption today, and provides twelve fundamental design principals for developing killer apps. Larry Downes is a consultant and speaker on the Impact of digital technologies on business strategy. He is a senior lecturer at Northwestern University, where he teaches technology, strategy, and law, and a fellow with Diamond Technology Partners and its Diamond Exchange, an Interdisciplinary roundtable for senior executives working to develop digital strategies.


See Below for Full Bio

  • Speaking Topics:

    e-Commerce, Future, Globalization, Management, Technology, Vision

  • Travels From:


  • Price:

    $20,000 - $30,000

    Notes on Fees

  • Videos
  • Full Bio
  • Speech Topics
  • Books
  • Testimonials
  • News
No Videos Found For this Speaker!

Co-Author of Unleashing the Killer Apps: Digital Strategies for Market Dominance. The book describes how executives can redefine the rules of their companies, industries, and relationships by acknowledging digital technology as the leading source of business disruption today, and provides twelve fundamental design principals for developing killer apps. Larry Downes is a consultant and speaker on the Impact of digital technologies on business strategy. He is a senior lecturer at Northwestern University, where he teaches technology, strategy, and law, and a fellow with Diamond Technology Partners and its Diamond Exchange, an Interdisciplinary roundtable for senior executives working to develop digital strategies.


  • The Emerging Science of Services
    After 100 years of product-focused engineering, the rise of a software and information-based economy has spurred the development of a new science—a science of service design, delivery, and optimization. Services science, for obvious reasons, is closely associated with the emerging services-oriented architecture familiar to IT professionals. This talk outlines the basics of the two, and their overlaps and divergences.
  • Strange Tales of the Supply Chain Revolution
    The exploding availability of information in standard formats from the beginning to the end of the supply chain is leading to new opportunities for collaboration, new sources of revenue, and, at the same time, tremendous tension among long-time partners. The driver of this revolution, of course, is the continuing price/performance improvements in core IT, including the introduction of low cost RFID tags. This talk describes the nature of the coming revolution, highlighted with three stories of organizations in very different industries that have either shown early promise or suffered early casualties.
  • The New Laws of the Jungle
    As information moves to the center of the global economy, problems at the intersection of law and business innovation are becoming more frequent and more dangerous. Executives at all levels of the organization, and not just in the legal department, need to understand the sources of these new conflicts, both to avoid stepping on landmines and perhaps even to learn how to include legal strategies in the overall strategy, as many organizations have already done with great success.
  • The CIO’s Role in Corporate Strategy
    Over the last ten years, CIOs in organizations large and small have been called on to take a more active role in the development and execution of corporate strategy. For many CIOs, this has proven to be the turning point. Those who are prepared to take a seat with fellow executives have found rewarding new career opportunities; those who have been unable to make the change are increasingly finding themselves in out-sourcable positions. This talk introduces some of the more important tools IT executives need to know about, including the development of an innovation portfolio and a technical and organizational architecture suited to rapid change, if they are to thrive in the new environment.
  • The Next Generation in Computing
    A seismic shift in information technology is taking place, equivalent in importance (and disruption) to the move during the 1980’s from mainframes to client-server. Larry Downes discusses seven key features of this new architecture and how companies can begin today to transition to it. More to the point, why should they?
  • Public Choice and Corporate Responsibility: The New Technology Dilemma
    History has shown over and over that preemptive regulation of emerging technologies does more harm than good, yet corporations and their trade associations often miss the chance to shape government decisions. How can you recognize the potential for your business of the latest technologies—whether stem cells or fuel cells—and work today to form the best public policy solutions to their development and regulation?
  • “Extreme” Collaboration
    The increased availability of transaction data from an exploding set of sources is enabling a new generation of business applications that will revolutionize the supply chain, breaking many old links even as it forges new ones. As data breaks down barriers within and between organizations, what are the possibilities for “extreme” collaboration?
  • The Strategy Machine: The Merger of Planning and Execution
    As in many previous technological revolutions, the difference between winners and losers boils down to successful, sustained execution and the discipline of strategy. Some companies have learned that in times of accelerated transformation, the only way to succeed is to remove the obstacles to change and integrate planning and execution as never before.
  • Building an Information Supply Chain
    History teaches that the development of new business infrastructure is harder than it looks, but once it’s done, surprising new applications and new sources of wealth result. Across industries, improved information flows and the introduction of disposable computing directly into consumer goods is creating a parallel supply chain built on information about the underlying transactions. In many industries, this information supply chain will be the future source of profits. How do you position yourself today to thrive in that future?
  • The New Industrial Revolution
    Clear away the debris of the boom-and-bust cycles of information technologies, and you find profound transformations going on across industries--transformations driven by information technology innovations that go well beyond the Internet. Larry Downes argues that sooner or later every industry will wake up and find itself, like the character in Franz Kafka’s novel “The Metamorphosis,” changed into a cockroach. What are the stages of change? What are the warning signs that the hard parts are upon you? What are the tools executives need to thrive in the emerging new industry structures? Is being a cockroach such a bad thing after all?
  • Unleashing Killer Apps: Digital Strategies for Market Dominance
    What are “killer apps” and how can you be an exploiter rather than a victim of them? The key concepts of digital strategy are introduced and highlighted with numerous examples from start-up and traditional businesses.
  • The Transformation of Industry
    The information revolution is not simply about merchants selling goods and services to consumers over a new channel, but a profound transformation of every step of the supply chain. What are the warning signs of an impending meltdown, and how can you position yourself to take maximum competitive advantage of the emerging industry that is evolving around your business?
  • Twelve Design Principles for Launching New Ventures
    Based on research over three years and over 100 companies, Larry Downes has developed twelve fundamental design rules for developing ventures, both for traditional companies as well as start-ups. The principles are introduced and demonstrated with numerous, current examples from his on-going consulting work.
  • Digital Strategy and the Customer: From Relationship Management to Partnership and Collaboration
    The digital revolution is giving new power and a new voice to customers, overcoming long-standing obstacles to organizing and tapping the expertise and desire they bring to interactions with you. Forget about call centers and “customer relationship management.” The time is now to begin building true communities of value in which customers form partnerships not just with suppliers but with each other as well.
  • Obstacles to Catalysts: Overcoming Strategy Inertia
    Once the great ideas are uncovered, the hard part really starts. Larry Downes explores eight surprising obstacles to the successful launch of new ventures, including human capital, marketing, regulation, organization, culture, and finance. Strategies for identifying and overcoming these obstacles are demonstrated through current examples and case studies.
  • The Crisis in Financial Services
    With the accelerating deregulation of the financial services industry, it becomes clearer that the invisible hand shaping the new industry to emerge has been and will continue to be digital technology. How can banks, insurers, brokers, traders and other players in the old world make the transition to the new world and even improve their competitive position in the process?
  • Killer Apps: The Social Dimension
    Digital technology is having a profound effect not just on the world of commerce but on social interaction as well. Larry Downes talks about the economics of communities and why they will become the true engine of value creation in the increasingly digital world. What are the expectations and abilities of the next generation of customers, managers, and entrepreneurs? How will they compete against the “digital homeless”?
No Books Found For this Speaker!
No Testimonials Found For this Speaker!
No News Found For this Speaker!



  • As always, you deliver excellent service. Thanks!
    Camden National Bank
  • "As I mentioned before, your engagement model was incredibly easy to work with, and I know we came to you on short notice!  I would highly recomm...
    Capitol One
  • The event was EASY Cake! and it went over very very well.  Thank you so much for the help and organization, it made my life very easy. 
    Boys & Girls Club
  • "The group that I work with to obtain all of my keynote speakers is Executive Speakers Bureau and I can tell you that I don’t like working with ...
    Indiana Youth Institute
  • "OMG Richard! As always you make me look like a rock star. Every single speaker we selected hit it out of the park. Thank you again. Can't even say wh...
    Arizona Hospital and Healthcare Assn.
  • "We loved our speakers. Thanks to you and your team for your outstanding service and thank you for your patience!"

    National Association of the Blind
  • Bridgeworks was awesome!!! Great feedback from all!! Thanks for all of your collaboration and positive we'll use you in the future.  
    Johnson & Johnson
  • "Thanks to you and Jo for all your efforts.  Connie Podesta and Roger Dow were great!"   
    National Apartment Association
  • "I want to thank you for helping with our Principals Day event. Marshall Goldsmith was excellent. Not only is Marshall the consummate professional, be...
    Burns & McDonnell
  • Everything went really well and we really enjoyed having Jack Uldrich as our speaker!  He was entertaining and funny and provided great examples....
    Novo Nordisk
  • "Let me just say again, what a pleasure it is to work with you and ESB. You really make it harder for others to reach the bar."
  • Thanks to Richard and Jo for all the coordination. Another homerun from Executive Speakers Bureau!  
    Wisconsin Hospital Association
  • "My entire team has enjoyed the experience of working with you and ESB more than words can express. Everything was handled in a professional and timel...
    Cregger Company
  • "I wanted to share with you feedback of my experience in working with Executive Speakers Bureau.. Very responsive and detail oriented.  When I wa...
  • "My mind was very much at ease knowing that Jack Uldrich was so well prepped.  I will definitely use your agency again."  
  • "I appreciate your recommendations.  In addition, you are always a pleasure to work with and understand the pains of an over worked meeting plann...
  • The Nebraska Hospital Association along with numerous other state hospital associations have enjoyed a long-standing relationship with Executive Speak...
    The Nebraska Hospital Association
  • "Richard, Your ability to put me in front of just the right group again and again, is nothing short of amazing. You work your tail off, you sweat the ...
    Alan Hobson
  • "Your tenacity and persistence in staying in touch with us is a model example of good salesmanship and partnering.  I will be using you as an exa...
    Schneider Electric
  • "You made my job so much easier! You are the only bureau I will use."     
    Sigma Systems
  • I want to thank you for all of your assistance you and Jenny were wonderful. If it had not been for you sending me suggestions I would not have found ...
    West Virginia Tourism
  • "We not only went 3 for 3 but I'd say they were all home runs! Thanks for your help on the speakers. It was a key and very positive component of our c...
  • Thanks to you, Jo and the rest of your team.  You are the BEST.  Knowing you are behind a speaker allows us the luxury of concentrating on o...
    Ohio Hospital Association
  • We truly appreciate the excellent support and attention to detail we have received from Executive Speakers Bureau.  They have provided us with so...
  • “Thank you guys it was a pleasure working with you.... You made the whole process easy. Thanks again”
  • "I LOVE this list that you sent me! I emailed several different places on Tuesday an...
  • "Let me tell you that the ESB team and Christine's responsiveness, follow up, proactivity, industry knowledge, and overall customer service was phenom...
    Clear Link
  • "Everyone loved Bob and he was so nice on site. Thank you for all you did. The process was so easy and we will definitely work with you again next yea...
  • "I shared with Kaplan [Mobray] that I had never had this type of experience with ANY vendor I have worked with in the past. Your responsiveness to urg...
    Gates Corp.
  • "I will be sure that all involved know what a wonderful resource you have been. The universe smiled on me when I discovered Executive Speakers and you...
    Ocala Eye
  • "This year’s speaker line-up at our Summer Meeting was the best yet. We knocked it out of the park. Thanks for all your help securing such excel...
    North Carolina Hospital Association
  • I’ve used the services of a number of speakers bureaus in the past. However, my current experience working with the Executive Speakers Bureau ha...
  • "Thank you so much for all your help in putting this together on such short notice. I will definitely use your services again in the future."
    Applied Materials
  • We could not have done it without you.  Thank you for the outstanding suggestions.  The speakers were by far the best we have ever had.
  • Our bank has held an annual business and economic conference for the past 9 years.  We have worked with Executive Speakers every year and I have ...
    First Midwest Bank
  • "WOW, is all I have to say and thank you!  Our event was a huge success and you never steer me wrong, both David Cottrell and Ryan Estis were exc...
  • "It was a great pleasure to work with you in making this event a success. Your professionalism, attention to detail and response to all my questions a...
    Fellowship of Christian Athletes
  • Thank you to both of you for everything surrounding Mr. Will as our special guest. I suspect, soon, I will be in touch regarding our next event. 
    Oxford Financial
  • You ladies really are the BEST!  After this event I am going to be on the hunt for keynote speakers in May.  I really want to work with you ...
Need Suggestions? Have Questions?

Need Suggestions? Have Questions?

Call us to discuss how we can help find the right speaker for your organization.

Get Ideas in 2 Hours or Less

Please fill in information below

Executive Speakers Bureau consistently receives praises about our speed and efficiency. From the beginning of your event planning, our extensive online speaker database and resourceful staff allow us to quickly equip you with the best speaker for your event.

Need a last minute speaker? No worries. Our speed and efficiency help us give you ideas for speakers in two hours or less.

Privacy by SafeSubscribeSM