I was struck over the holiday season by the news that AkzoNobel had sold its Decorative Coatings Business in North America to PPG. The news reminded me that, while change management commentators devote considerable attention these days to the environmental pillar of Sustainability, consideration must also be given to the economic pillar when developing new business strategies.
Only a few week to go until the European Coatings SHOW will its open doors again. Besides raw materials, services, lab equipment also one hall will be dedicated for showcasing new developments in production technology. The organizers report growth particularly in the production equipment segment. About 30 per cent of the exhibitors present solutions in this segment – trend still rising. In my opinion one of the most challenging tasks for the coatings industry is to optimize costs without compromising performance and quality. But which role plays production technology exactly in this context? Will we see a huge innovation step in the near future and how will it looks like?
Recently I had a discussion about innovation. But when is a product really new and when is it just an improvement? I think we shouldn’t use the word "innovation” for every change of the product. I would rather talk about development or modification.