PART B: valorisation plan
SECTION I: The product
|1a||The innovation potential of this product is related to:
|Ecranoplanes are at the moment used mainly for military purpose. The fast development of communications and transport nowadays show that there is a need for quick and cheep means of transportation in civil use, for civil application. This poses the challenge of finding solutions that secure good flying parametres of the ecranoplanes in combination with low power engines. With this in mind the innovation potential of the product relates to:
|1b||What added value for end-users does the product hold?
• higher quality
• Better technical characteristics
• Other …
|The introduction of this innovation into production is expected to add value in terms of:
- higher quality
- better technical parametres of the craft
- lower exploitation and maintenance costs
by decreasing the engine power and the fuel consumption and increasing the lifting capability of the air craft at the same time.
|1c||What is the Unique Sales Proposition of the potential product?|
|- Better load-lifting capability
- lower fuel consumption
- better aerodynamic features for low level control of the aircraft (i.e. at low altitude)
SECTION 2: The Market
|2a||What is the target market for the product?
Please describe the characteristics of your target market.
|The global market is the target market for this ecranoplane.
Potential interest for this aircraft exists in Europe, USA, Asia and North Africa, as well as Australia.
Potential users of these types of ecranoplanes could be diverse:
- transport companies – for transportation in areas of multiple islands or archipelagos, e.g. Greece, Malasia, Indonesia, etc. This ecranoplane is very suitable for individual transportation between islands, or from mainland to island.
- Usage of ecranoplanes in agriculture – it is very convenient to use ecranoplanes for treatment of agricultural areas with chemicals, etc.
|2b||How the product is characterized from the following options? Number of companies producing similar products in the field.
• Base – applied by all companies in the industry
• Leading – applied by a single or limited number of competitive companies
• Key –at a development stage, but has already proven its potential
|The product can be characterised as Leading as it is produced and applied by a limited number of companies worldwide.
The most important competitor would be ATT from Russia – this company produces ecranoplanes I Volga 2 capable to fly at low altitude over the water surface but not well over the land surface – cannot fly over big obstacles, e.g. bushes. It has a very powerful engine – 235 horse power, turbo diesel engine.
|2c||What type of market demand will be satisfied?
• Existing demand – the market is already developed
• hidden (latent) demand – the market has yet to be developed
|The market demand could be qualified as hidden, as the majority of ecranoplanes are produced for and used in the military service.
The market for civil aviation is not developed due to the lack of a safe aircraft of this type. There are attempts by some companies to introduce this type of aircraft into civil aviation but unsuccessful as they have not managed to improve the safety features of the aircraft. For the time being China produces similar ecranoplanes of two kinds: (I) for military service, and (ii) for passengers. Yet the latter differs from the one proposed herein by having two engines, 250 horse power each. It flies at an altitude of 20 m above water surface only, i.e. above flat surface.
|2d||What is the current stage of the product’s market life cycle?
• Implementation, implementation in production (leading to a radically new product offers)
• Growth (rapid spread within the industry or outside it)
• maturity (parameters of the technical characteristics of manufactured products reached their maximum, higher-grade products can be manufactured on the basis of technological substitution)
|The market stage of the product’s market life cycle could be assessed as either as stage of implementation in production, or as stage of growth.
On the one hand the product is well known but mainly in the military area. On the other hand there is some civil application but it is mainly by big crafts with very powerful engines and made to transport many people on board.
Whereas the present R&D result concerns the development of a small craft that has the capacity to transport 2 persons on board, that is economical in terms of fuel consumption and is easy and safe in terms of control of the craft.
|2e||Strategic partnerships (existing or potential).|
|The company has not sought for strategic partnerships thus far. It has good business contacts with the Technical University of Plovdiv which has the laboratory and technical equipment needed for the testing of the prototypes. Moreover, the university also has a faculty in aviation.
There is need to find partners for the marketing. Potential partners for introducing the product on the market could be sought from Russia and the USA.
SECTION 3: The Competition
|3a||What is the competition within your target market?|
|A major competitor could be ATT from Russia – provided they develop a similar aircraft known as “I-Volga”. I-Volga transports 5 people. There is no information on particular producers of ecranoplanes of this category. It is very likely that research in this area is currently ongoing in China and the US.
|3b||What competitive advantages will the introduction of the new product ensue?
• lower prices based on lower production costs
• product differentiation (uniqueness of the product proposal)
|The product has a number of competitive advantages and they fall in both of the above categories:
- lower prices based on lower production costs, and
- product differentiation
There are similar products but they have limited application area – mainly in the military service. In addition they have lower safety and consumption features. *In comparison to them, the present aircraft has increased safety and lower specific costs with increased load capacity at the same time, and hence – increased area of application of the aircraft.
|3c||Potential products relate to the following price range:
• High price range
• Average price range
• Low price range
|The product would be sold on the market within the average price range. There are assumptions that similar products shall be marketed on the Russian and other foreign markets in the high price range.|
|3d||Potential products will be marketed:
• To regulated markets (e.g. heat supply, water supply, universal telecommunication services, agricultural products, fishing industry, architectural services)
• To markets operating on the principle of free negotiation between agents on the market
The present aircraft shall be marketed on markets operating on the principle of free negotiation between agents on the market.
The sales of such products have been made mainly on regulated markets (military). The aim now is to have the present product marketed on the free market – for civil aviation, where prices can be freely negotiated.
SECTION 4: Indicators
|Estimated cost of the new products||Ecranoplane for 2 people onboard, 1 engine, ready to be produced at about 13-15 000 EUR|
|Expected market volume (potential / maximum number of users)||30-40 pieces a year|
|Expected sales volume||30 000 x 40 pieces|
|Expected market share of the company (proportion between sales and total company sales in the relevant market)||Ultra light aviation - it could take up to 20-25% of the global market.|