Duncan Industries Essay

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Annette Behunin BUOM 485 Case Study - Duncan Industries October 4, 2011 Background Duncan Industries manufactures automotive hoists, with a focus in surface hoists used by repair shops, service stations, automotive garages and car dealerships. There are two types of hoists, in-ground and surface. Within the surface lifts, there are several types manufactured including two and four-post as well scissor lifts. Surface lifts represent 78.5% of the market, and scissor lifts are but a small portion of that representing 6.0% of the surface category and 4.7% of the overall market. Duncan Industries specializes in scissor hoists. In 1999, the company captured 46% of North American scissor hoist sales and 2.1% of the overall hoist market. The president of Duncan Industries is Mark Duncan. As a design engineer, he has a solid background in the industry working eight years for a Canadian subsidiary of a U.S. manufacturer before starting Duncan Industries in 1990. Mark had designed an above ground lift and was passionate about the development of this lift with its unique scissor design and wheel alignment pads. Unfortunately, his senior management did not share his passion. They were, however, more than supportive of his decision to take this product to market on his own. His plan was to build a superior product that would be recognized as the “Mercedes” of hoists. His design included a locking mechanism that would be easily adjusted and secured based on the mechanic’s specific needs. Additionally, his hoist requires less maintenance and specifically facilitates optimal ease in wheel alignment. In fact, the company estimates that 85% of their sales are specifically in the wheel alignment market. Duncan Industries has been able to achieve the goal of being a recognized leader in safety within the lift industry. Mark has four patents for his

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