Key Takeaways from the UL Product MindSet Study, Part I

Yesterday’s post conveyed some Interesting Facts and Figures from the UL Product MindSet, a recently released study that quantitatively surveyed 1,195 manufacturers and 1,235 consumers across a range of export and import markets in high-tech, building materials, food, and household chemicals. From these findings we will attempt to interpret where global manufacturing is going — and needs to go.

1. Global Manufacturing is going to continue to rise.

Not only did the top 10 export markets produce approximately 9.489 Trillion in exports in 2010, not only did growth rise an average of 13% in developed economies and 17% in emerging economies, and not only did manufacturing supply chains continue to increase to the point that an average product required 35 different global contract manufacturers, but 50% of manufacturers are still projecting, and endeavouring to increase, sourcing from additional countries. The reality is that many large multinationals, despite the increases in transportation costs brought on by the rising cost of oil, are still finding ways to make global sourcing profitable (and won’t leave the bandwagon until it breaks down to the point that it is irreparable).

2. Global Manufacturing, like Global Trade, is a Two-Way Street.

If one looks at the top exporters and top importers list, 9 of the top ten 10 countries on each list match. If an organization is going to manufacturer and trade globally, then the organization has to walk both sides of the fence and master both the importing and exporting game.

3. Going Global for Healthcare is Making More Sense by the Day

Not only is healthcare often cheaper and better in developing countries like China and India (where they have four times as many geniuses as the US), but when one considers that most of the medical devices and medications are coming from there anyway, and that the rich industrial centres have doctors that have training and equipment that rivals the training and equipment available to leading doctors in North America (and Europe), maybe an individual should go to India and pay out of pocket rather than risking his or her health (as he or she waits for 6 months to get treatment) and his or her financial solvency (as he or she waits to see if his or her co-pay coverage will kick-in or not). And if he has heart issues, the world-class Narayana Hrudayalaya Hospital in India probably beats the hospital down the street.

4. Selling Globally Is Starting To Make More Sense Than Selling At Home

China and India have four times the consumers, and China in particular is spending more on high-tech (and luxury) items than the US. And the general commitment to saving and financial solvency in Asia (as compared to the general commitment to borrowing from tomorrow to enjoy today that is prevalent in North America) means that that they have the money to spend if there is a product they want.

Come back tomorrow where we share our fifth, and final, takeaway from the Interesting Facts and Figures from the UL Product MindSet.