Case study - A leading high-tech vehicle component manufacturer


The context

Our client is a Tier 2 manufacturer of high-tech components for high-speed rail vehicles in the UK. The client's production capabilities were only suitable for specific types of components with specifications for high quality finish, low weight and high strength.

The market for vehicle components in general is large. It covers air, road, rail and sea and demand occurs at build and through the life of each vehicle. The client wanted to understand how they could diversify their product range to supply components into other rail markets and the air sector. They wanted to understand the opportunities and plan how they could target those particular markets.

The vehicle component markets can pose barriers to trade. High levels of safety regulations, certification and compliance are time-consuming and expensive. Customer relationships are often complex, involving consortia formed to support specific operators or projects, or to overcome global trading restrictions. Also the largest vehicle manufacturers have well established supply chains, so the best entry strategy is not always going direct to the Tier 1 builder. Finding the right partners is the key to opening bigger opportunities.

Client objectives

Enter the air fleet market and expand the UK rail component business into international markets

The market intelligence problem

The challenge was to find the specific opportunities for the client for their niche products and production capabilities.

General market and sector information was not good enough. Detailed datasets did not exist to support the client's decisions.

The information needed to be built bottom-up from a wide variety of sources and be based on opportunities presented by each operational fleet of vehicles in each country around the world.

The Marketvista Dataset and Research

The Dataset and Research was delivered to the Management, Production and Sales teams.  The data was delivered in different formats for each group: as a database, lists of companies and sales targets ready for loading into their CRM system and a number of handy analytical workbooks.

The intelligence we delivered:

  • Identified, sized and prioritised individual contract opportunities in the global air and rail markets
  • Specified which product types to focus on to address each market
  • For the high-priority opportunities and markets, identified key contacts in each target customer with the most need for the client's range of products

Overcoming the market intelligence problem

Foundation dataset

The foundation dataset was quickly extracted from our extensive knowledgebase built from thousands of sources giving intelligence on:

  • vehicle manufacturers, their suppliers and products
  • global market and trade data
  • social, economic and political factors that would affect our client’s ability to target opportunities

Providing the context

Additional commercial and open sources of data were added to the foundation to provide rich intelligence necessary to find the largest opportunities such as detailed fleet information and order books.

Filling the gaps

Over 750,000 automated web searches were launched to harvest information missing from existing sources such as:

  • competing component manufacturers, their products and customers
  • infrastructure investment projects driving demand for new fleets
  • maintenance requirements and their refurbishment cycles for each model

Client orientated

For rapid adoption by the business we orientated the data to our client's point of view. We incorporated our client's terminology and classifications to maintain consistency for them. We integrated their existing data on customers, known competitors and opportunities to provide a natural and seamless view of the information.

Detailed primary research

Telephone interviews were conducted with in-country procurement teams to confirm their purchasing requirements and selection criteria so our client’s Sales team could make an impressive first contact.

We fixed the inconsistencies in established commercial sources; data on the infrastructure projects required particularly attention.

We filled significant gaps in the available data sources. Gaps included the order books for the smaller aircraft manufacturers, the metro rail fleets globally and information on important markets such as India.

To support detailed analysis, we added intelligence into the data. For example, to enable calculations of opportunity size we incorporated the number of each component type required in each model of vehicle and the number of vehicle units required by each opportunity

The Marketvista Dataset


Additional value

With its detailed 360° view of each of the markets, the Marketvista Dataset supported a wide range of analyses. The different teams within our client were able to use the data to achieve their objectives, and more.

  • Their Production team could clearly see the existing supply chains and work out where they wanted to enter the market with new products. For each scenario they could see the competitors, the suppliers and partners.
  • The Sales team were able to see the key competitors, their propositions, the channels they used and the key messaging in each market so they could better position their strengths.
  • The Production team could assess the likely demand for new builds and through life servicing and assess their future needs for a skilled workforce, new production equipment and any additional workspace.
  • The data was loaded into the client’s CRM system and was instantly allocated, accessed and used by the Sales team to approach the right contacts at the target opportunity. The data armed them with intelligence on the key contacts, relevant products, the likely order size and time to order, and the strengths and weaknesses of their competitors.
  • The Management team identified and assessed risks and they were able to put in place suitable plans to avoid, transfer and mitigate them.


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