Innovation and Market Analysis of INGENASA
Examensarbete för masterexamen
The purpose of this master thesis project is to identify the intangible resources needed by the biotechnology firm INGENASA to design technological innovations and markets. For this purpose, a theoretical method has been set-up to gather and analyse the information needed to obtain a good overall picture of key aspects of the knowledge based process in this company. Our analysis indicates that the most critical intangible resource in the innovative process is the company knowledge in the scientific and technical field (e.g. knowhow, experience and capabilities in different areas of science). Due the specialised nature of its business, the human capital is one of the most important intangible resource of INGENASA and the key drivers of the innovative process. Therefore, the success of INGENASA is highly depended on its ability to retain and attract qualified scientific and technical personnel. The development of future innovations will be depended on how well the company can manage to create marginal improvement of customer utility (e.g. reliability) by controlling certain parameters of its products such as their technical performance (e.g. specificity, sensitivity, etc), for example, by implementing and applying cutting-edge technologies (e.g. RT-PCR and phage display) and know-how. It will be important to continue creating customer utility of flexibility and efficiency through technical accessibility provided by INGENASA’s technical support. The analysis indicates that the most important intangible resources needed in its current market are its brands, patents and contractual agreements with different parties. (e.g. clients, distributors and R&D partners). Also, INGENASA generates structural control based on three intellectual building blocks. The first building block is based on the biotechnical control consisting in patents to claim the key components (e.g. antigens), and their applications in veterinary diagnostic and disease preventions and contractual agreements with employees and R&D partners. The second building blocks is based on trademarks and trademarks rights used to communicate the value experience (e.g. reliability) to the customers and to claim its specific connection to the company. The third intellectual building block is based on commercial agreement with clients (e.g. food and animal firms, and govermental laboratories) and distributors in the diagnostic field to extract financial value from the invention and value proposition. Our analysis indicates that there is a great window of opportunities for INGENASA in China due the high economical losses in the animal industry, specially in the swine industry, caused by infectious diseases. For example, until now there is not any advanced diagnostic product for porcine rotavirus in this market. When approaching this market, INGENASA can plan to acquire intellectual property rights such as patent rights concerned with antigens, method patents, or design patents to establish a defensive wall for business in China. For the long time development in China, it is necessary for INGENASA to acquire trademark rights and establish brand reputation in this market, which requires this company to get to know trademark system, the culture and customers. Secrecy protection is also of importance in this approaching process. When being infringed, firstly INGENASA can ask for administrative remedy that has become one important feature of Chinese system. In this approaching process INGENASA desires to take use of low labour cost combined with advanced technology to gain competitive edge. There are several entry models that INGENASA can choose such as exporting, licensing, establishing venture or purchasing venture. The analysis indicates that the appropriate entry models for INGENASA at the present stage are license or joint venture. In the way of license or joint venture INGENASA is able to cooperate with Chinese partners by contributing advanced technology to gain low cost labour, marketing network and other valuable local resources. How to balance the relationship with cooperative partner, establish structural control by keeping the leadership in technology, holding intellectual property rights all the time and designing contractual obligations are of significance for business in this market. By getting to know various customers and implementing effective marketing strategies INGENASA is capable to establish brand recognition in this market for long-time development. Being aware of some difficulties, INGENASA needs to pay attention to intellectual capital management and protection as well as other issues, for example, importance of connection and culture differences. In general, intellectual property rights, proper entry model, desirable cooperation partner, designed contractual relationship and customer strategies may enable INGENASA to become a successful actor in this huge market with great potential.