4.06.2007

Pursuing Lean in a Competitive Market

“Lean Manufacturing is Revolutionizing the North American HVAC Circulator Pump Industry.”


            That is the heading on a news release from Research and Markets, an international marketing research firm. The release promotes a new report from Frost & Sullivan providing an overview of this niche market.


            I don’t know whether “revolutionizing” is a correct description. However, based on the news release, the detailed report (which costs several thousand dollars) describes an industry that is ideal for the application of lean principles.


            It’s a small industry; the North American market for heating, ventilating and air-conditioning circulator pumps generated revenues of $144.2 million in 2004.


            But while growth is forecast for the industry, the market for the pumps “is highly competitive with very little room to differentiate among competing product,” the release states. “Manufacturers are challenged to improve production methods to minimize manufacturing costs in order to reduce price.”


            They are doing just that, the release says, adding, “The manufacturers can succeed in the market by expanding their product offerings to provide different accessories along with the pumps while reducing their overhead costs.”


            Isn’t this the type of thing lean experts have been saying for years?


            If any of you have this type of experience – using a lean strategy to gain advantage in a competitive market, whether it be pumps or anything else – post a comment and let us hear about it.


 

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