Sustainable Business for ABB Motors and Generators

Examensarbete för masterexamen
Master Thesis
Quality and operations management (MPQOM), MSc
Kullander, Axel
Malmberg, Johan
The market for large motors and generators has experienced a decreased demand during the last couple of years following the drop in oil prices in 2014. This follows significant investment in the sector by different actors in 2005-2014, which has resulted in an oversupply of large motors and generators on the market. ABB’s division for Motors and Generators is a high quality, high cost supplier in these markets and has been challenged to keep demand high for its products. At the same time, renewable energy takes ever more market shares on the global energy market, incentivized by efforts like the Paris Agreement of 2016. With the objective of finding new business applications for ABB Motors and Generators within sustainable energy production, this study has identified and analyzed a number of potential such applications. These applications have been evaluated in regard to ABB’s resources and capabilities to compete in the prospected markets, and through an external perspective where market and technology forecasts have been taken into consideration. The analysis is based on a theoretical framework regarding business markets as networks, as well as resources in business relationships. Three markets have been identified as having a high potential to constitute strong new business opportunities for ABB – Geothermal Power, Large Windmills, and Grid Stabilization Products. The increased share of renewable energy creates a less stable electrical grid that can be stabilized by counteracting short fluctuations with synchronous condensers. The demand for these condensers are expected to grow in the amount of uncontrollable power (i.e. sun, wind etc.) being added to the grid. Geothermal Power is an energy source that can provide sustainable and clean baseload power to the electrical grid which will be vital in counteracting longer fluctuations, particularly from uncontrollable energy sources on the grid and different power demand at different times during the day. Wind power is currently one of the cheapest forms of producing energy and the trend goes towards producing larger windmills, where the large generators can be used. The changed business environment has also left ABB with a need to look over its sales channels, to further increase the effectiveness of its efforts to argue the value of its high-cost, high quality solutions. It is concluded focus should be on influencing end user customers to motivate the high quality and high cost of ABB’s products.
Övrig industriell teknik och ekonomi , Other industrial engineering and economics
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