Business models

To benefit from innovations and survive in today’s changing environment, it is critical that firms adapt by transforming their business model. A firm’s business model is critical for its performance including its capacity to grow and internationalise as business models are focused on creating new markets and addressing new customers. Business models vary according to the nature of product/service offerings, the geographical markets in which a firm operates and the level of relatedness of its product/service offerings. Firms can develop new and more competitive business models by:

  • developing the firm’s resources through research and development
  • bringing resources into the firm (i.e through recruitment or acquisitions)
  • through external collaborations (i.e joint ventures, alliances).

Based on desktop and interview data, we developed a fit-for-purpose framework integrating insights from our research on business models and captured the diversity of business models in the METS sector. This research was undertaken in our Business Model program by our team at the University of Queensland, led by Associate Professor Damian Hine and Dr Henri Burgers.

Introducing the METS Business Model Benchmarking Tool

This video presentation by Dr Henri Burgers explains what a business model is, why a business model is important to a firm’s success and how METS firms can take steps to create a better business model:

Our sample

A national survey captured the most relevant data from METS firms regarding the performance and characteristics of their business models. Responses were received from senior executives of 300 METS firms active in Australia, representing a wide variety of industries, geographical locations, employee sizes and levels of engagement with the sector. Most of the METS firms in our sample were small and medium-sized firms: 20% having < 5 employees; 37% between 5-19 employees; and 35% from 20-199 employees.  Only 8% of METS firms employ 200 or more people.

Start the Business Model Benchmarking Tool

METS firms can input their data into a web-based template that returns a benchmark comparison via a formatted, easy-to-read, printable PDF report. It can be used by firms to understand where their models sit in relation to the sector’s common (and/or successful) business models by conducting an evaluation at the component level. Click the image below to start:

digital abstract for toolkit
Business Model Benchmarking Tool


Fact Sheets

These fact sheets summarise the key research findings from our Business Models Program:

The components of a business model

The global mining environment is highly dynamic. METS firms need to create novel business models that unlock new economic value from new technologies; support more resilient competitive advantages and improve readiness for change across the sector. We define a successful business model as a system of essential activities and resources that creates economic value for a firm’s customers, their partners and themselves.

This Fact Sheet explains our fit-for-purpose framework, outlining three key components of a successful METS business model: Value creation; Value delivery; Value capture






Business models of METS firms

For a METS firm to be competitive, they need a business model that creates value for its customers and has effective market and distribution channels.  To be successful, the firm needs to capture the value they create for their customers in order to reinvest in improved processes and competitive positioning.

This Fact Sheet describes the characteristics of business models employed by Australian METS firm.






Thumbnail-Benchmarking report

METS Business Model Benchmarking Tool

To develop Australia’s first sector-specific business model benchmarking tool, we integrated insights from our research, including interviews with over 300 senior METS executives from active METS firms across Australia.

This tool captures the most relevant data regarding the performance and characteristics of these business models.  METS firms can input their data into a web-based template that returns a benchmark comparison in an easy-to-read printable pdf report.  The report can be used by firms to understand where their business models sit in relation to the sector’s successful business models.