Chris Zook of Bain & Co. wrote the book "Unstoppable" and an op-ed in the WSJ on "hidden assets" that turned around Apple, GE, Nestle and others. These companies "discovered" existing products, markets or innovations but only when key players chose to pursue them. Apple built its platform on the iPod, GE tapped the strength of GE Capital and other survivors found their solutions in-house.
Nine of 10 companies that renewed themselves in the past decade used assets that had not been maximized. Zook's research found that half of the Global 500 companies since 1994 have seen their world changed by core business threats. Sounds like the situation Bristol Myers-Squibb faced when the company turned to idea management tools - details at http://www.imaginatik.com/webdoc_idea_case_bms.
About half of those challenged companies used merger/bankruptcy to lose their positions. The other half made risky fundamental strategy changes to grow and survive. Stories like these are reminders that species have to adapt to survive. After all, Nokia began as a wood/paper company. . . so cell phones and snow tires took it a long way from its roots (insert groan here).