Towards a New Business Model Canvas for Platform Businesses in Two-Sided Markets


  • Kyllikki Taipale-Erävala Post-Doctoral Researcher
  • Erno Salmela Post-Doctoral Researcher
  • Hannele Lampela Senior Research Fellow




This study aims to increase the understanding of digital platform businesses and business model innovation in two-sided markets.


A new business model canvas tool was created through abductive reasoning and a real-life case study. The case was a unique driving school digital platform that belongs to employee and professional service platforms.


The proposed business model canvas is based on Scholten’s canvas (2016) for platform businesses and complements it by acknowledging changes in people’s values and macro-environmental factors as new elements.

Research limitations/implications (if applicable)

The study is limited to an exemplary case of a driving school digital platform. However, the results and the novel canvas tool can be applied to innovating business models for digital service platforms in many industries.


The novelty of the study is derived from the insights created by the case study and the new tool that helps platform businesses innovate in two-sided markets.

Keywords: digital business model; two-sided market; canvas; value proposition; values; PESTEL

Author Biographies

Kyllikki Taipale-Erävala, Post-Doctoral Researcher

D.Sc. (Tech.) Kyllikki Taipale-Erävala is as a Post-Doctoral Researcher in the MicroENTRE research team at the Kerttu Saalasti Institute, University of Oulu, Finland. Her research expertise is competencies enabling business survival in SMEs in changing business environments. Additionally, she is interested in developing micro enterprises, innovation, business model development, knowledge management, advanced services, and entrepreneurial education.  She has experience of SME entrepreneurship, in the field of training and education, supervision of apprenticeships, and HPA and energy technology.

Erno Salmela, Post-Doctoral Researcher

D.Sc. (Tech.) Erno Salmela is a Post-Doctoral Researcher at LUT School of Engineering Science. His research interests include experimental innovation and learning, design thinking, sustainable value creation, digital ecosystems, disruptive and systemic innovations, demand-supply chain management and decision making. My research has mainly focused on machinery industry and industrial service businesses. He has performed 14 research projects in collaboration with other research organizations and industrial companies. Furthermore, he has been project manager and principal investigator in 8 of those projects.

Hannele Lampela, Senior Research Fellow

Hannele Lampela, D.Sc. (Tech.), M.Sc. (Econ.), is a Senior Research Fellow in Industrial Engineering and Management in University of Oulu, Finland, where her research area is information-driven management. She also holds a title of docent in Industrial Engineering, specializing in information and knowledge management in LUT University, Finland. Her research focuses on organizational networks, knowledge management, and new business models. She is interested in innovation management, managing product knowledge, and knowledge work in general. She has published in several journals including International Journal of Information Management, International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Innovation Management, International Journal of Product Development, and International Journal of Technology Management.