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CAP with I-Tech in Spring 2010

Company Description

I-Tech is a Swedish company that is dedicated to developing and commercializing antifouling substances for marine antifouling paint. Antifouling paint (bottom paint) is the backbone of the marine paint industry with sales exceeding USD 1 billion. The market is heavily regulated through legislation in Europe and the United States. Marine Biocides are chemical substances added to marine antifouling paint to prevent biological growth on the painted structure. All such biocides must be individually registered with relevant chemical regulators. The cost for undertaking the necessary biological safety investigations adherent to a registration file can be estimated at millions of EURO. I-Tech’s product is medetomidine, which it sells to marine paint companies as a powder additive to marine antifouling paint. Its primary competitor is copper which is questioned because of its environmental profile as it accumulates in marine sediment. Because of its specific effects, medetomidine is only needed in single gram quantities where copper is needed in hundreds of grams. Its competitive advantage is consequently the combination of high potency and a benign environmental profile.

Student Project Description

As part of its international expansions goals, I-Tech asked GWU MBA students to develop an analysis of the U.S. market in order to launch its specialized marine paint products. Over the course of the semester, the students conducted extensive research and reached out to industry leaders to gather information about the recreational boating sector, including environmental regulations, to formulate the most logical point of entry for I-Tech. The students conducted an analysis of the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats of U.S. market entry. They stayed in close contact with their client throughout the process, giving I-Tech management updates on key findings throughout the process. The project culminated with the students presented their market entry strategy to the client at the U.S. Embassy in Stockholm, Sweden.

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