Inflection Point

DEFINITION of 'Inflection Point'

An event that results in a significant change in the progress of a company, industry, sector, economy or geopolitical situation. An inflection point can be considered a turning point after which a dramatic change, with either positive or negative results, is expected to result. Companies, industries, sectors and economies are dynamic and constantly evolving. Inflection points are more significant than the small day-to-day progress that is made and the effects of the change are often well-known and widespread.

BREAKING DOWN 'Inflection Point'

Andy Grove, Intel's co-founder, described a strategic inflection point as "an event that changes the way we think and act." Inflection points can be a result of action taken by a company, or through actions taken by another entity, that has a direct impact on the company. Regulatory changes, for instance, could lead to an inflection point for a corporation that was previously held back by regulatory compliance issues. Inflection points in technology include the advent of the Internet and smart phones. Politically, an inflection point can be illustrated by the fall of the Berlin Wall or the fall of Communism in Poland and other Eastern Bloc countries.

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