Evaluation of future developments within a market is the basis for decision making on market entry and strategy development. Scenario analysis is one technique to assess different market developments and to derive a business strategy based on the resulting predictions.
Additive Manufacturing Strategy
To find and employ the right strategy in Additive Manufacturing it is essential to determine the aim that is to be achieved. In Additive Manufacturing market can be split into two business segments that follow a different aim.
On one side providers of products and services in the AM supply chain have to compete and prevail against other providers. This includes AM machine vendors, feedstock producers, service bureaus but also auxiliary products and service providers. On the other side are the users. Across all verticals they strive to create unique selling propositions and increase customer satisfaction by using Additive Manufacturing
AM Strategy for suppliers
Continuous innovations of solutions for the Additive Manufacturing process chain lead to an ever-evolving supply chain and enhanced competition. Small to medium sized enterprises dominated the AM market over the last decade. In recent years, many large companies became active in the AM business and began to offer products and services to their existing customer base in the supply chain.
In certain market segments the intensity of competition significantly increased. Over the last decade numerous players entered the market with Laser Powder Bed Fusion products and services that have a similar value proposition to the customer. Such low differentiation ultimately leads to, from the supplier point of view, undesired price competition.
How to find the right supplier strategy
The right value proposition for market entry
Market go-to strategy
AM Strategy for users
The medical device, aerospace or automotive industries come to mind that started to embrace AM and added 3D printing to their portfolio of production technologies. Increase of product performance and reduction of manufacturing cost are the main drivers for metal Additive Manufacturing adoption today.
The road to series production of metal Additive Manufacturing products is long. In the 2000s, announcements for serial applications were mainly found in medical and aviation industry. They identified applications with high benefits from adapting AM specific characteristics. Other industries such as tooling were also successful in utilizing the technology.
Time of market entry
The commitment to an Additive Manufacturing technology as well as the time of market entry marks a significant decision. Over the past 20 years, metal Additive Manufacturing has been introduced successfully into many industries. First movers utilized their competitive advantage and placed products and services to secure a strategic market position. However, to enter
as first mover may not always be the best choice. Advantages as well as disadvantages come into play for first movers and followers alike and have to be assessed accordingly. With continuous improvement of machines and processes as well as inventions of new working principles, followers may gain the upper hand by adopting superior technology.
First mover advantages and disadvantages
Follower advantages and disadvantages
“How do I find the Added Value for my customer?”
When formulating a business strategy, the central question should be: How do I satisfy the customer’s demands? To add further value to products and services, innovative technology such as Additive Manufacturing can be an answer. Following questions have to be addressed:
Identify opportunity in products and services with potential for added value
Identify suitable technologies by market screening – Additive Manufacturing may be a viable solution
Pilot study and knowledge transfer
Detailed market and scenario analysis
Implementation and qualification of Additive Manufacturing supply chain
Challenge dynamic technology development
Study on Additive Manufacturing Business Strategy
In Volume 5 of the AMPOWER Insights, the topic of Additive Manufacturing Business Strategy is covered in detailed. This includes description of the tools described here combined with fascinating use cases. If you are interested in reading more, download the issue today!