The focus of the INSPIRE project is the development of innovative business models for flexible, sustainable, and demand-driven manufacturing and processing. As part of the project, this report focuses on the proposal of novel and innovative business solutions to provide new opportunities for more flexible and sustainable business networks in the European process industry.
The business solutions are structured along five business model (BM) archetypes:
- Mass customization
- Decentralised or modular production
- Reuse and sustainability
- Emerging Energy Carriers
The methodology used regarding the development of the novel business models has two phases: (1) first phase initially checks whether the proposed business model archetype is “technically feasible” for a particular company and if feasible “how good” it is in terms of improving key performance indices for a particular company. In doing so, a list of requirements and critical factors that are relevant to the “technical feasibility” and the “additional value generated/fitness” is developed for each proposed BM archetype. The identification of such requirements and factors is based on both desk research and the feedback received from our industry partners through previous workshop and interviews, which will be further validated for Deliverable D3.3. Each factor is associated with particular objectives related with the three sustainability pillars: economic, social, and environmental. The first phase also outlines the methodology to measure the “scores” that a particular firm has for certain factors, which would yield the overall “fitness” of this business model. This model will be presented in detail in Deliverable D4.2. (2) In the second phase, challenges impeding the successful deployment of the BMs are defined as well as linked to the factors from the first phase. In order to help firms to deploy such models successfully, specific and concrete “solutions” are provided. The ultimate goal is to provide a decision support tool to help managers take some actions based on the solutions we provide in order to make sure that the scores a particular firm would have for the factors increase making the proposed business model more attractive. An overview of the methodology is depicted in Figure 1.
The set of challenges and business solutions we present here definitely is not exhaustive as there may be other specific solutions for different value chains. Our intention in this research is to create a general guideline for companies introducing new business models, instead of defining a specific business model case.
Figure 1. Methodology used in the deliverable for the definition of business solutions in each business model (BM) archetype
Table 1 presents a summary of the factors listed for the five BM archetypes (please refer to the particular BM archetype in Chapter 2 for details). The factors that are common to all archetypes are related to cost and flexibility. The other factors are focused on the customer, capabilities, risk, sustainability and corporate identity.
Table 1. Summary of the list of factors
Table 2 presents a summary of the solutions proposed for the challenges identified in the introduction of new BMs. It can be seen that most of the challenges could arise from misalignment between the product/service provider and the user, lack of a clear and well-defined scope, not clear obligations, the expectations are not properly set, the potential risks are not identified, or existing miscommunication or mistrust among the different parties. Therefore, is necessary that the parties can establish a deep trust and not a shallow confidence for a successful implementation of the different BMs for each archetype.
Table 2. Solutions for challenges that affect the introduction of new BMs
The reader can find the detailed descriptions of such solutions and ways to introduce the new business models in Chapter 2. In addition, some examples from different industries are also provided to show the impact of such “solutions” and to concretize “how” these could be implemented in the process industry in Europe.
Curious about the results? Read the full report here.