Case Study

Bossard Fasteners (B): Developing a digital strategy by refusing a digital transformation

2 pages
September 2018
Reference: IMD-7-2021

Back in 2014, Bossard’s growth had been driven largely by an excellent executive management board, led by CEO David Dean, a long-time Bossard leader, who focused on three strategic pillars: product solutions, engineering and logistics. While enjoying the success of the company, the CEO and the Chairman started a process to focus on new technologies that will impact the industrial fastener market and the production of their main customers, i.e. OEM manufacturers. 3D-Printing, for example, will not replace the manufacturing of industrial fasteners in the near future. However, if more industrial parts are 3-printed and not assembled, there is no need for fasteners. On the logistics and production front, the Internet-of-Things (IoT), Industry 4.0, and Robotics will change the factory of the future. Big Data, Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence will also open new frontiers in manufacturing, and finally, “smart screws” have the potential to serve as sensors for collecting relevant data. Despite all these new technology, Bossard decided that it does not need a “Digital Transformation”, but realized that it had no shared vision for the company’s digital future.

Learning Objective
  • How to identify opportunities and threaths from new technology, both for the focal company’s own business model, but more importantly, for the business models of its customers.
  • How to distinguish a “digital transformation” from a “digital strategy”.
  • How to create a roadmap for developing and implementing a digital strategy without weakening the established and successful business model.
Artificial Intelligence, Business to Business, Digitalization, Differentiation, Digital Transformation
Global, Switzerland
Bossard Holding
Field Research
© 2018
Available Languages
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