[NOTE: Because of our strict NDAs protecting our clients, these cases do not include identity indicia. We never post a client situation that can strictly identify them or could adversely affect them.]
Large competitors were increasingly disrupting and out-maneuvering our client’s smaller sales force, threatening revenue and continuing operations.
This client has a long, proud history of niche imaging services.
However, their market had been dominated by a few very large competitors, relegating our client to single-digit market share and <$15M in sales, with slight increases year-to-year.
With the acceleration of digital innovations in imaging, those large competitors were investing in technologies our client couldn’t match.
Conventional innovation could not overcome these expenditures, and we were engaged to find something entirely new to assist the company in surviving — and hopefully growing.
How We Addressed This Critical Challenge
By combining research and convergence innovation, we found an entirely new use for our client’s imaging capabilities that had not been developed elsewhere.
Based on our recommendations, our client determined it could grow from <$15 million in revenue to $1 billion in 18 months. (If done well, we calculate that figure to be considerably larger over 2-3 years).
The key was going beyond the standard uses of their imaging.
Utilizing the capabilities of a tech startup we located in a tech cluster in another country, they could enter an entirely new market, serving a massive new customer base of 1.2 billion customers globally.
This would require a reasonable investment in software development and low-cost cloud resources. Staffing for this level of development would be easily obtainable or outsourced.
We recommended protecting this innovation with patents.
But more importantly, the innovation could be licensed, even to competitors at a cost that would not drive them to create competitive systems.
For a small business, this was a complete sea change. While there were incremental costs for entering this new market, it did not impede their current products and services or customers. And the ROI for the effort would be astounding.
When faced with a critical situation, no matter how small the company, we look beyond just a band-aid solution for an opportunity that can not only save the company, but create an opportunity to grow massively.
Even in the face of giants.