MarketLine Blog

Posts written by Goska Kafel

Ginkgo Bioworks: Quest to disrupt the biotech space

MarketLine

Ginkgo Bioworks, a Boston-based DNA writer and designer company, launched in 2008, is already one of the largest DNA writers in the world. It is expected to make over $20m in revenue in 2017. Ginkgo’s success is based on an innovative technology that uses yeast as a base to make all kinds of substances, including perfumes, cosmetics and sweeteners, from microbugs. This technology can be used across a whole host of consumer and industrial products, enabling customers to grow rather than manufacture better products. The company is currently working on… Read more

Beyond the pill: Pharma gets digital push

MarketLine

The global pharmaceutical market was worth $946.1bn in 2016, growing with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 6.1% between 2012 and 2016. Healthy market growth and big margins in the traditional pharma industry are attracting a new generation of startup companies, who are using big data, sensors and artificial intelligence to revolutionize the way healthcare is delivered and they are not afraid to compete with the incumbent Big Pharma companies. Emerging digital technologies from the new generation start-ups are reshaping the traditional pharma landscape. By collecting enough data, directly… Read more

Ezetap Quest to democratize India’s digital payments industry

MarketLine

India has recently been going through a digitalization of almost everything, and this revolution has now reached the traditional banking and finance sectors. As even large banks have realized that using time tested technology means always staying a generation behind, there is now much acceptance and demand in terms of implementing financial startup products and services in the country. Additionally, the recent and largest ever government demonetization caused a cash-crunch, hitting the remote, rural areas most, and left citizens with no choice but to go digital. With nearly 1 billion… Read more

Takata: Exploding end to a scandalous journey

MarketLine

Takata started out as a textile manufacturer more than 80 years ago and in 1960 expanded into the car parts manufacturing business, riding the wave of industrial expansion in Japan. After teaming up with Honda it became a leader in auto safety systems that also served overseas clients. In the late 80s, the company became the subject of an official investigation due to a reported failure of its seatbelts installed in many Takata-equipped Honda vehicles. The investigation led to the second largest safety recall in US history, affecting 8.9 million… Read more

Gene Editing: Bring your genome home

MarketLine

In recent years, two new genetic technologies have started a scientific and medical revolution. One is the ability to easily decode the information in our genes and it is relatively well known. It began with the development of tests for genetic diseases. They have proven they can be quite successful, leading to a reduction of human suffering. The other, not yet clearly understood by the general public, is the newfound capacity to modify genes at will. New editing tools to create genetically defined human cell lines have come to the… Read more

Behind the Digital Iron Curtain: Rise of Chinese Silicon Valley

MarketLine

After a long period of rapid, double digit growth, the Chinese economy entered a more sustainable phase of development, based on innovation and consumption. Given the large population of 1.3 billion in China, the explosive growth of smartphone users, e-commerce, and online content consumption and creation led to a digital revolution in almost all industries and business sectors. While the Chinese Communist Party is trying to match its social control in the real world with the virtual world, which becomes more and more restrictive, the country’s internet is thriving and… Read more

Selfie generation: Refashioning make-up market

MarketLine

The global make-up industry grew by a record 8.4% in 2016 and was the main growth driver for the cosmetics market worldwide. The range of make-up products is endless, and some product categories, in particular those highly popular with the generation of Millennials, (i.e. concealers, illuminating highlighters, lipsticks) are booming. These hyper-connected customers are young, have a strong purchasing power, new ideas about beauty, and are also very keen to spend money on beauty products. While clothing and department stores are increasingly closing their physical locations, not being able to… Read more

Tesco’s deal with Booker: Attempt to control the UK food supply chain?

MarketLine

The deal, announced in January 2017, grants several benefits to Tesco. It means that the incumbent retailer can expand even faster in the UK food convenience sector, the fastest growing part of the grocery market for a number of years. The merger with Booker will also give the retail giant the access to a new territory – the “out-of-home” eating market, as it will be taking over the supplier to a string of restaurants and cinemas. This is a new area for Tesco, but one that accounts for around a… Read more

Russian agriculture: Sanctions to create an agricultural superpower?

MarketLine

Following the Western penalties imposed on Russian companies in 2014, the Russian government responded with countersanctions, banning imports of many western food products. This encouraged import substitution and made Russian exports more competitive, thus showing that despite the poor state of east-west relations, there are plenty opportunities to be found in the Russian market. The Russian government, with an already set goal to diversify its economy which is heavily dependent on energy exports, has provided RUB215bn ($3.2bn) for the development of the agricultural sector, resulting in sudden and significant growth…. Read more

East meets West. The battle for supremacy in India’s e-commerce market

MarketLine

While China and the US currently dominate in terms of e-commerce spending, India is one of the world’s fastest growing internet markets. It is also the fastest growing country in the Asia Pacific region in the retail e-commerce space. The rapid pace of growth of e-commerce in India creates a huge potential opportunity and attracts not only local players but foreign e-commerce giants, like Amazon and Alibaba. The largest local players, Flipcart and Snapdeal, initially seen as the dark horses in this race and attracting serious investment, are now losing… Read more

LiDAR self-driving technology. A case of calculated theft?

MarketLine

Google and Uber started off as friends with Google parent Alphabet investing $258m in Uber in 2013. They then became competitors, as Uber started experimenting with its fleet of self-driving cars in 2016. Finally, in 2017, both companies ended as adversaries in court, engaging in a bitter legal fight to control the future of transportation. The suit details the lengths Waymo goes to in order to protect its trade secrets, including purchasing LiDAR components from numerous vendors and completing assembly in-house to prevent any single vendor from knowing everything about… Read more

Big retail takes control of Russian food market

MarketLine

The Russian food market is amongst the largest and most populated globally. As the population of 146 million people continues to grow, they are also buying more food. There are a lot of opportunities for further development, especially in the convenience segment, as the grocery retail market is significantly less saturated than in Western Europe. Changes in tastes and technology have opened up the sector to new suppliers and new ideas. However, after almost a decade of double digit growth, this over $300bn market has seen a significant deceleration recently… Read more

Pet business of the future: A whole different breed

MarketLine

The pet industry in the US is booming, approaching $60bn in revenue. Growth in the market is derived both from increasing pet ownership as well as from increased spending per pet. If people have been willing to buy something for themselves, they are likely to now buy it for pets. There are plenty of opportunities across various segments of the industry, especially in the pet-related services segment which is growing at nearly twice the rate of the overall pet market. People increasingly view their pets as part of the family… Read more

Self-driving to the future

MarketLine

The line between the auto and tech industries is rapidly blurring, with the pursuit of autonomous driving and a shift from car ownership towards car sharing and ride sharing. China is widely viewed as the next frontier for growth and many market players are looking to establish a foothold in this country, which requires significant investment. To keep up with changing market trends, most major auto makers are investing in their own driverless-car technology, which is less costly if done in cooperation with high-tech companies, like Google or Apple. The… Read more

Global Haircare Market – Data Infographic

MarketLine

An infographic with summary information on the global haircare market

Halal: The new organic

MarketLine

The global halal market, which includes products and services complying with Islamic laws and regulations, was valued at $1.7tn in 2012, growing faster than other consumer markets despite the recent global recession. At a time when many Western markets are reaching their saturation point, Muslim consumers are becoming a target audience, and the halal market is emerging as one of the fastest growing consumer segments in the world. Despite the common belief that the term “halal” is limited to meat and poultry, opportunities in the halal market go way beyond… Read more

Russian e-commerce market presents significant business opportunities for those able to overcome its challenges

MarketLine

With 84.4 million internet users and 27 million online shoppers Russia is already the largest online community in Europe and growing rapidly. With a skyrocketing number of Internet users, but a still underdeveloped commercial environment, the opportunity to build a successful online selling business in Russia is huge. The biggest growth areas are mostly in the remote regions, where growth is 50% higher than in central cities. Even amid a slowing economy, the country’s online shopping kept increasing at a double digit rate in 2013, making it the fastest expanding… Read more

Whole Foods: A victim of its own success?

MarketLine

Whole Foods, the US-based organic food retailer, is not now nor will it ever be a cheap shopping experience. Despite its high prices, the company has seen its revenues rise in recent years, as demand for healthy, natural foods has constantly increased. However, despite a whole paycheck being needed to shop at this organic food giant, recently only a fraction of one has been needed to buy the company’s stock. The company has seen its shares fall almost 35% in 2014. The main reason for the stock’s poor performance is… Read more

Semiconductor industry back on track

MarketLine

The global semiconductor industry recovered in 2013, growing by 5.4%, after a contraction recorded the year before. Regionally, the Americas showed the largest increase (11.4%), while Asia Pacific grew by 4.3% and Europe recorded a 3 % growth. At the same time sales fell sharply in Japan, contracting by -15%, mostly due to the devaluation of the Japanese Yen. The United States has rebounded to once again become one of the largest and fastest growing regions for semiconductor manufacturing globally. The US semiconductor industry grew nearly three times faster than… Read more

Inglot refuses to play by the rules and wins a share of global make-up market

MarketLine

Founded over 30 years ago, in the small Polish town of Przemysl, Inglot Cosmetics started as a chemical manufacturer, producing cleaning fluid for cassette players and cheap eye shadows. Within only a few years, taking advantage of the changing political situation in the country, the company became a large cosmetics manufacturer with a presence at all major beauty gatherings and events around the globe, from the runways of Fashion Week to the stages and sets of TV and Broadway musicals. As examined in the MarketLine Case Study ‘Inglot Cosmetics –… Read more

Luxottica to make nerdy Google Glass look cool

MarketLine

Luxottica Group S.p.A. (Luxottica or ‘the group’), the world’s largest producer of eyewear, which offers a range of premium, luxury, sport and performance glasses, has signed a strategic partnership with Google over its Glass eyewear. According to the agreement, the two groups will work together to create innovative wearable devices for the Glass brand. Luxottica will put Google’s geeky device through the designer’s laboratory in an attempt to make it cool. The eyewear giant is expected to take care of the design, development and distribution of Google Glass. The company’s… Read more

Sudden End To Kingfisher’s Reign

MarketLine

Kingfisher – popularly known as King of good times – was established in 2003 by the liquor baron Dr. Vijay Mallya, who named the company after his favorite beer. After a modest start in 2003, Kingfisher managed to quickly build a strong brand and high visibility, by becoming the first ever player in the Indian airlines industry to operate in the lucrative niche of premium domestic flights and rapidly growing its base of happy customers. The company made all efforts to make the flight and the whole travel experience as… Read more

Motorcycles sales stuck in neutral

MarketLine

After a brief recovery in 2011, the global motorcycles market contracted again in 2012-13, with the European region showing the steepest decline. According to the Motorcycle Industry European Association (ACEM), the European market has now hit rock bottom and 2014 should see a slightly more positive sales performance. In addition to general weak economic conditions, motorcycle distributors blamed poor climate, especially the long lasting winter in 2013, for negatively impacting on sales. In the UK, the market for motorcycles is taking longer to recover than the car market, as the… Read more

Car sharing industry – beginning of the end?

MarketLine

Zipcar, Inc. operates a car sharing network, providing self-service vehicles, conveniently located in reserved parking spaces, by the hour or by the day. The company offers its solutions to individuals, universities, businesses, and government agencies. It is present in North America and Europe. Zipcar’s way of doing business is particularly appealing to young city dwellers, who do not own their own cars, but walk, bike and use public transportation instead, most of the time. They usually like the cool cars  that Zipcar provides, such as Mini Coopers, or Toyota Prius,… Read more

Luxottica fares well despite uncertain global economy

MarketLine

Despite the cooling of the overall global luxury market, the outlook for sunglasses and eyewear, especially in emerging and developing markets, including South America and Asia, looks bright. Growth opportunities in emerging markets are based on the greater purchasing power of the upper-middle class, the proliferation of luxury stores and the increased availability and rising consumer recognition of premium and luxury brands. The concentration of global wealth in emerging markets has created increased demand for luxury items and accessories, driving consumption in the premium segment. This is great news for… Read more

giffgaff: Replacing traditional telecoms business model with co-created products and services approach

MarketLine

Despite declining revenues and increasing saturation of the overall UK telecoms market, mobile retail operations revenue increased in 2012, according to the independent regulator and competition authority – Ofcom. Although the rate of growth of the number of mobile subscribers decelerated significantly, there are still business opportunities to take advantage of, especially for mobile virtual network operators, who incur much lower costs and enjoy higher profit margins than traditional operators. giffgaff is a Telefonica-owned, SIM-only, pay-as-you-go mobile virtual network operator active in the UK. The company rents its mobile network… Read more

McDonald’s is going to pumpkin battle with Starbucks

MarketLine

To maintain profitability in the face of higher labor, occupancy and operating costs, McDonald’s is responding by adding more premium and also expensive, items to its menu. After introducing wraps and smoothies, the company is now looking to take a sip of the coffee market and win some of the Starbucks crowd. Pumpkin spice-flavored latte is the new battlefield. According to Starbucks spokeswoman Alisa Martinez, Starbucks has sold more than 200 million pumpkin spice-flavored lattes within the ten years since they were introduced in 2003. A 16-ounce pumpkin-spice latte sells… Read more

Global air passenger numbers to double in 20 years

MarketLine

Airbus, the European plane manufacturer, predicts that air passenger numbers will more than double globally over the next 20 years from 2.9 billion to 6.7 billion in 2032. The France-based manufacturer attributes this growth to a bigger global middle class, urbanization, migration and tourism. Airbus also predicts that 29,220 new aircraft will be needed over the next 20 years, in order to meet this increased traffic. About 10,400 planes of the total number will be necessary just to renew existing fleets. Overall, new orders for aircraft would amount to $4.4tn…. Read more

Ukraine reduces reliance on the Russian gas and imports more from Europe

MarketLine

Ukrainian state energy company, Naftogaz, has reduced gas imports from Russia by 30% so far in 2013 and will cut them further in 2014. At the same time imports from Europe will double, according to Ukraine’s Energy Minister Eduard Stavytsky. Imports from Europe are expected to reach 2-2.5 billion cubic meters this year, and no less than 5 billion cubic meters in 2014. The reason behind this move is the high price of Russian gas. While the sample average price of gas supplied from Europe by German firm RWE (RWEG.DE)… Read more