Businesses that grow exponentially need to carefully consider the risks of running out of sources of income. Sources are not unlimited and simply growing in size, does not guarantee longevity.

The Speckled Wood butterfly teaches us something about rapid early growth.

A piece of research in 1994 identified the following about this beautiful Pararge aegeria:

High growth rates at the beginning of life negatively affect larval survivorship and those with high growth rates will also have high weight-loss rates if food becomes scarce. Most interestingly, they are also less likely to survive if food becomes available once again.

Businesses that grow exponentially by acquisition, merger, or simply because of demand need to consider the risk of growing too quickly and then running out of ‘feed’ for the business.

The larger you grow the more 'feed' you need to sustain your growth and if the Speckled Wood is anything to learn by, the simple resumption of sustenance may not be enough to ensure survival.

Manage the risk of exponential growth by aligning growth rate with sustenance.

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