SECTION I: The product
|1a||The innovation potential of this product is related to:
|The product is partially market driven innovation and partially coming as a substitute of similar products, which it supersedes with it better characteristics and advantages. Seeking cable disruptions is a very common problem nowadays with the enormous span of any kind of cable nets – power providing, communication, internet, TV, etc. So the demands for such a device, which can facilitate the technical and servicing staff in showing the exact location of the breaks, thus spearing precious time and money, are great. Besides the other strong points one of the advantages of the unit is its compact design and light weight, allowing benefit of its services “on spot”, not only in the laboratories. The low price, compared to those of the competitors, can make the unit widely available to all possible end users.
|1b||What added value for end-users does the product hold?
• higher quality
• Better technical characteristics
• Other …
|One of the most important advantages of the device and its strongest side for the end users is the unit’s excellent price. Being compact and mobile, the device could be easily carried n the pocket and used instantly directly at the site, where the problem is. The lack of calibration before each measurement means less time for exploitation, fewer problems with the personnel, saved service time for repairing the disrupted cable.
The end user will also benefit from the cheap and simple use of the product, easily operated and understood even without special training.
|1c||What is the Unique Sales Proposition of the potential product?|
|The main advantages of the unit are basically its unique proposals to the end customer. First of all – extremely low price – approximately 10% of the price of the rivals. The “operator friendly” measurements – no need of highly qualified operators – just power the unit and connect two cables to get the distance to the disruption in meters. Lack of preliminary extensive calibration – the unit is immediately ready after switching on. Easy to take along, due to its light weight and dimensions and capable of 5000 h of continuous working with just one battery. Reliable and data providing even in cold weather conditions – it can work at -15 – 20 Degrees Centigrade. Narrow error range – just 4-5% – this means that in case of testing a broken power line for example with length 10 Km – the problem is localized in just 40 meters segment, which have to be checked by a technician, instead of loosing weeks to search for disruptions along the 10 000 meters distance.|
SECTION 2: The Market
|2a||What is the target market for the product?
Please describe the characteristics of your target market.
|The needs of such useful device are great. They can be estimated in thousands just in Bulgaria. Needless to say the unit is a highly specialized piece of equipment, marketed directly in a small segment of trained technicians and engineering staff. The target market of the item could be the big power supplying companies, those of telecommunication and TV and Internet providing, emergency servicing groups in case of natural disasters, etc. The portable device for indication of cable disruptions could be useful even for individuals and technicians, servicing and building home cable nets of any kind for localization of problems in hard or impossible to reach points. The market could be broadened in Europe and then worldwide targeting the same groups.
|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 could be characterized as leading, using technology, applied by several companies. Many world leading and well-known electronics manufacturing companies are marketing similar equipment. Comparable devices are offered by limited number of European and USA companies. The search has revealed similar proposals from Fluke, Tektronix, Siemens, Philips, etc. These companies are specialized in test and measurement equipment, although industry-leading, but offering very expensive units. And most of their devices are part of an extensive measurement lines, precise, but not portable, which can not be used “at site”.
|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 proposed device serves already existing and increasing demand – the problem with frequent cable disruptions and the need for exact indication of the disruption point is quite frequent nowadays. This portable device for cable disruptions indication could save thousands of work hours, as well as valuable materials and metals. Especially for Bulgaria – this technical decision could contribute extremely for minimization of the servicing time in case of stolen power or railway supply cables, indicating precisely the distance to the break point.
|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 correct marketing strategy could contribute to a wide spread of the portable disruptions indicating unit within the industry, using such equipment, however the broadening of the market is limited to the narrow target groups, mentioned above. The main marketing advantage is the excellent price of the product, compared to the rivals.|
|2e||Strategic partnerships (existing or potential).|
|At the moment the researcher is looking for a possible partnership in order to arrange manufacturing of initial small sized batch.
Strategic partner could be found in the face of a large well known company, specialized in measurement and testing equipment. They could be interested in implementation of the know how in their production lines for optimization of the costs. On the other hand granting a license agreement is also a possible way for development. The product is interesting for the specialists and could be manufactured and marketed under the name of a leading test and measurement company manufacturer
SECTION 3: The Competition
|3a||What is the competition within your target market?|
|The competition is mainly in the face of the big testing and measurement equipment manufacturers – Textronix, National Instruments, Siemens, Philips, etc. Some of them are covering Europe, the others mainly USA, but nowadays the electronics market is a global one, so the proposed product should expect facing strong rivalry, with multimillion advertising budgets. The national market is a little bit different. The Bulgarian market is driven by the “lowest possible price” demands and this is the main “decision taking” reason in this moment. So this device for indication of cable disruption is looking very good in front of the leading, but quite expensive and complicated measuring units. The market pattern of very few specialized testing equipment manufacturers in Bulgaria is also favorable for developing a decent market share for the new product.
|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)
|Among the main advantages of the new product is at first the excellent price, almost 90% lower, than those of the competitors. The product is portable, light weighted and easily stored in a pocket. All indications are clearly readable on a LCD display in meters. No special knowledge and experience needed to get the results of the measurement. Another great feature of the product is in it autonomy – using only one alkaline battery for 5000 h of continuous testing.
|3c||Potential products relate to the following price range:
• High price range
• Average price range
• Low price range
|All abovementioned advantages of the indicator for detection of cable disruptions position it naturally in the low price segment. The end user will strongly benefit of its low price, while getting the same accurate results as with highly specialized and expensive equipment of the leading brands. The excellent price could make the product highly available even for individuals or home technicians.|
|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 potential product could be marketed either to the regulated or free negotiation markets. This device could be very interesting as equipment for the service and emergency squads of the big companies – heat suppliers, electrical power suppliers, telecommunication, internet providers, etc. The low price is also another tool for marketing among the individual users and small home-based servicing businesses. Further development for lowering the end price or implementation of the cheaper analog indicator for detection of cable disruptions could open also possibilities for direct marketing of big quantities of the device, as home appliance.|
SECTION 4: Indicators
|Estimated cost of the new product (digital variation)||240 EUR/pc.|
|Expected market volume (potential / maximum number of users)||5000 pcs/year|
|Expected sales volume||Up to € 1,56 mill annually|
|Expected market share of the company (proportion between sales and total company sales in the relevant market)||15-20%|