Driving Global Growth: Strategic Expansion for Specialty Polymers Producer

Case Study

Faced with the challenge of extended growth targets, a Top 100 Specialty Polymers producer, Polymers Company*, needed to develop a geographical expansion strategy and revitalize its innovation process. I helped this client with a well-defined geographical expansion strategy and provided a roadmap for growth.

The Story

The Situation
Polymers Company was taken over by a capital investor who extended their growth targets. But at the same time, the company found its home markets threatened by intensifying competition and the commoditization of products that had previously been strong differentiators. Its innovation portfolio couldn’t keep pace with the new growth targets.
The company aimed to venture into new regions but needed a comprehensive understanding of the market landscape, competition, and customer expectations. It also sought to assess its existing portfolio’s alignment with market demands and identify areas for improvement and innovation. Furthermore, the company aimed to explore strategic options while evaluating associated risks.

The Approach
Working closely with the CEO, I started an investigation to improve two critical capabilities required for successful implementation of a growth strategy:

  • Identify market needs: I helped senior management understand key macro trends over the next 20 years and the impact of these trends on two target regions. Also, I conducted thorough market research in these two distinct geographical regions to gauge potential interest and demand, analyzing key competitors and players to understand their strategies and positioning.
  • Generate attractive new offerings: After analyzing the product portfolio, benchmarking it against market requirements and identifying gaps, I worked with the business units in virtual workshops to brainstorm about how to meet current and future customer needs, including calculating the expected annual returns on products designed to meet those needs.

The Output
I synthesized the findings into a comprehensive SWOT analysis, providing a clear view of the company’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats.

Based on that, I presented the company with three strategic expansion options, each accompanied by a detailed breakdown of costs and associated risks. I went beyond mere suggestions by outlining the innovation and investment requirements necessary to execute each strategic path effectively. This guidance aimed to empower the company as they navigated the decision-making process.

The Results

We identified over 20 new innovation opportunities and we ensured that 25% of its Research and Development resources are focused on long-term sustainable innovations that create higher value.

Polymers Company also gained a comprehensive understanding of the market situation in the target regions and a clear innovation strategy emerged, aligning the company’s future offerings with market demands. This well-defined geographical expansion strategy provided a roadmap for growth. Risks and investment needs were transparently identified, enabling informed decision-making.

Ultimately, Polymers Company was equipped with clear and actionable insights. They are now able to consistently deliver against the aggressive growth targets from its investors. Through a combination of meticulous analysis, strategic guidance, and informed decision-making, my client now stands poised to conquer new markets and secure sustainable growth.

*I take client confidentiality seriously. While I’ve changed the company name, the results are real.