Low-cost thermal transfer coder
An 18-month collaborative development
project involving Sagentia Innovation and
Markem led to the successful launch and
sales of a low-cost industrial coder
Our client asked:
Our client wanted to develop a low- cost thermal transfer coder
specifically for developing markets, based on market research that
showed a strong potential demand for such a product.
With a full in-house portfolio of on-going new product developments,
Markem concluded that an external development and design partner
would be the most efficient use of resources. In particular, the partner
had to demonstrate a track record in design for low-cost projects.
Following a competitive tender Sagentia Innovation was chosen as
the development partner.
The project story:
The approach, adopted from the outset, was one of collaboration:
Markem undertook voice of the customer research, product validation
testing and additionally provided application knowledge. Whilst
we were responsible for all product design, development and
introduction to manufacture. This included the selection of both
Chinese component manufacturers and the final assembler.
Results: deliverables and outcomes
The new printer, which is specifically designed to print onto film
packaging ‘in process’, comprises three units: a printer, local user
interface and power supply. To meet market requirements for a
low-cost solution, we actively controlled costs by undertaking
a careful trade-off analysis of features and benefits versus cost
throughout the specification and design phases. This, coupled with
our management of production tooling, component manufacture
and final assembly, ensured that we were able to deliver within the
cost parameters set out by Markem.
We also met the time deadlines set by Markem. From our initial
meeting with the client through to product launch took just 18
months. Within the first three months we completed an initial
concept design along with a supporting business case. Design
for prototype was achieved by month eight and a first fully
functioning prototype was available 10 months into the project.
A fully representative sample was delivered to Markem after 15
months. To achieve this ambitious target, we fielded a strong
team comprising of product designers, electrical and mechanical
engineers, software specialists and production engineers.
Since its launch, the coder has been well received in the
marketplace and generated strong initial sales.
Our consultants, scientists and engineers redefine what’s possible and help R&D groups across the medical, industrial, consumer and food and beverage sectors achieve commercial return from their opportunities.
We have completed over 10,000 projects for start-ups and global market leaders alike, from understanding the market & technology landscape through to developing and delivering complex products.