A company that makes artificial limbs can tell emotionally moving stories like no other. Of course, most of us don’t need assistive aids. Plus, we have business to attend to as we make commercial machinery, electrical components, widgets, etc. As such, you might be tempted to scroll past a story about a company in a whole different industry.
But I would argue that PTC Creo customer College Park Industries is worth a closer look, no matter your line of business.
College Park is a prosthetics company that is growing its market share, entering new markets, improving profit margins, and sweeping the competition—and it’s not all done with heartwarming human-interest stories. It’s done with smart engineering and business ideas that any of us could learn from.
Meet Customer Needs.
College Park’s flagship (and first) prosthetic is the Trustep, an artificial foot launched in 1991. Today, the company offers many different styles of foot prosthetics. The product range addresses the needs of younger and older people, larger and smaller foot sizes, and average and athletic lifestyles. The company expands its line every year, and as a result is growing its market share.
Find Neglected Markets.
College Park has 10 different product lines. In just the past few years alone, the company added the Soleus, Velocity, and Celsus. Many of these products are specialized for unique lifestyle choices. Snowboarding? Rock climbing? Afternoon gardening? College Park has a solution for them all. And that’s been key in helping the company break into new markets and find new customers.
In addition, the company is expanding geographically with projects to bring quality prosthetics to people in countries with little healthcare support.
It takes vision and courage to venture into new markets. Fortunately, College Park, like its customers, has plenty of both of those traits.
Use Technology Intelligently to Improve Profit Margins.
One way that College Park succeeds in reaching new markets is by keeping quality high and costs reasonable. The company does this in two ways:
- Engineers constantly evaluate new and improved materials and manufacturing processes to make sure they’re making the best products for the lowest costs.
- The company effectively leverages individual components in such a way that it can offer hundreds of thousands of variants. For example, the Trustep product is customized using fewer than 5,000 components, for a total of 460,000 options. This reduces inventory, lowers product costs, and allows for more exhaustive testing of all components.
Patent Your Work.
Here’s a no-brainer: College Park designs are patented, and so they’re not likely to be replicated by competition.
Why Should You Care About Prosthetics?
College Park Industries is a leader in a unique market, and it’s likely to stay that way. But it’s interesting to note that the company got there the same way most of us do:
- Meeting customers needs
- Expanding into new markets
- Keeping up with materials, processes, and costs
- Protecting intellectual property
We’re eager to tell you about our customers like College Park and their successes because we all learn from each other regardless of our industry. Keep watching this space for more stories from PTC Creo customers and how they grow their businesses.