3D Printed Swabs to Reduce Shortages

3D Printed Swabs to Reduce Shortages

Formlabs, a Massachusetts-based 3D-printing company, is preparing its Ohio manufacturing facility to supply 100,000 swabs per day to stem the shortage of this key component of COVID-19 test kits.

These swabs will first be sent to partner hospitals that helped develop and design the swabs.  A plan is at work to access the distribution channels of 3,000 hospitals in the U.S. so that Formlabs can supply the much needed component of the COVID-19 test kits for widespread testing of the disease.


Video Spotlight: Hospitals face shortages of medical supplies as US cases spike (Mar 20, 2020, Fox News)


This post is based on the Tech Crunch article, 3D-printing company Formlabs expects to bring new swabs for COVID-19 to market, by Jonathan Shieber, March 25, 2020, and the YouTube video in the Spotlight. Image source: Jonathan Parry/Getty Images

Discussion Questions:

1. Is Formlabs in a position to address the shortage of medical supplies of COVID-19?

Guidance: Formlabs has the 3-D printing technology and ISO-135 controlled facility to manufacture test swabs, a key component of COVID-I9 test kits in high demand but short supply.  With more COVID-19 test kits, more testing can be done Continue reading

Facebook
Twitter
Fast Fashion Turns to Fast Trash

Fast Fashion Turns to Fast Trash

April 10, 2020

Ghana imports large amounts of secondhand clothing from the UK and other countries, but poor quality makes much of it unsaleable.  Over 50 tons a day, representing about forty percent of the items coming into Kantamanto, the main market, end up being thrown away.

Landfill sites in Ghana are overflowing with the debris.  Low quality fast fashion items, cheap single use t-shirts from marathons or other special events, and unclean items have little to no value in the resale market.  Vendors gamble, buying their bales of used clothing sight unseen, and hope for the best.  Sadly, much of what they purchase will be thrown away, making Ghana and other African countries a dumping ground for other countries’ unwanted textile waste.


Video Spotlight: How fast fashion choices in the the UK are causing an environmental catastrophe in Ghana (Feb 18, 2020, ITV News)


This post is based on the Daily Mail article, The fast fashion trash mountain: Shocking report reveals today’s cheap clothes are so badly made they often can’t be resold—and end up rotting into a toxic soup in Africa, by Barbara Davies, February 25, 2020, and the YouTube video featured in Continue reading

Facebook
Twitter
The Billion Dollar Brand Club Is Disrupting the Basics

The Billion Dollar Brand Club Is Disrupting the Basics

The founders of Dollar Shave Club, Harry’s, and other direct-to-consumer start-ups adopted razor-sharp strategies.

They focused on consumers’ simple needs and disrupted the old adage “You get what you pay for.” They fearlessly lured customers away from giant corporations’ established brands and succeeded. Their strategy was to offer quality, basic products at much lower prices than the competition’s and connect directly with their customers. However, for all start-ups, easy market entry with a catchy video on a Web site is both an opportunity and a threat: it helps achieve rapid success while leaving the door wide open to other daring, new competitors.


Video Spotlight: The Dollar Shave Club Video that Started It All


This post is based on The New York Times article, They Changed the Way You Buy Your Basics, by L. Ingrassia, January 23, 2020, and the YouTube video, DollarShaveClub.com – Our Blades Are [Expletive] Greatby Dollar Shave Club, March 6, 2012. Image source: Shutterstock / Oksana Kuzmina.

Discussion Questions:

1. In your opinion, what are the competitive priorities emphasized in Dollar Shave Club’s operations strategy? Distinguish between order winners and qualifiers.

Guidance: Review cost, quality, delivery and flexibility. To beat the competition, Continue reading

Facebook
Twitter