Sunday, June 18, 2017

Unique and highly regulated Gondola business.

The Gondola business in Venice is unique and interesting, reflecting the long history and traditions.

It is strictly regulated by "traditions", instead of "law", that people seem to “have to” follow. The "traditions" include, but not limited: must be Venetians, must be male (can’t image these in US), and must have family track record in Gondola business for generations. The licensing fee is extremely high at 250,000 Euro and the base model of Gondola boat costs >40,000 Euro. These “regulations” and extremely high entering cost may protect certain group of people, push competition out and maintain profit margin.

There are pro and con for their strict “traditions”. The pro can be preservation of their Gondola style and culture; incentive to maintain high quality of service from high profit margin. The con can be lack of competition and high price for visitors; tradition is hard to change to adapt to the demographic change, such as declining number of available candidates as Gondola sailors/drivers.

What do you think about the unique Gondola business?

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