About the Illustrations

In SimplySeven, each Internet business model is illustrated with a drawing as well as an icon. The icons serve as navigational guides through the web site as well as the book.

The Illustrator

The illustrations for Simply Seven were created Alexander Gellner. Alexander is a Berlin-based designer specialized in illustrations, cartoons and motion graphics. Alexander graduated from the University of Applied Sciences Berlin. Among his clients are several film production companies and TV networks. Alexander works pro bono for The Red Cross of Germany. Check out his work at www.gellnerism.de.


Although the symbolism of some of the illustrations are obvious, some are not. Here are the explanations.

Service Sales

service salesThe drop of sweat symbolizes the fact that services are sold directly and the lack of scalability of most Internet services businesses.


subscriptionThe infinite loop is a reminder of the long-term contractual relationship that subscription businesses are based on.


retailThe retail business model involves a lot of real world “stuff,” warehouses, logistics, shipments.


commissionThe commissions business model is the first involving not just two, but at least three different parties.


advertisingThe first 100 free-standing cylindrical advertising columns were erected in 1855 – this is an illustration of such a column. The entrepreneur, a Berlin-based publisher, was granted the right to display advertising by the city administration, provided he combine it with news which would be of value to the public. The relationship between advertising and information persists today, driven by the need to reach the target audience.

Licence Sales

license salesThe light bulbs symbolize the creativity behind works of intellectual property, such as music, film or books, and also software. The tree with numerous light bulbs shows that digital intellectual property can be reproduced easily. It also hints at the fact that creativity is never an isolated act, but builds on previous achievements.

Financial Risk Management

financial risk managementThere is no more classic representation of financial markets than the bull and the bear. The rider of the bull and the bear makes money by predicting financial outcomes and taking appropriate financial positions.