The case “Du Pont Kevlar Aramid Industrial Fiber (Abridged)” states the development history of Du Pont’s products, and focuses on investing and marketing of Kevlar.
Kevlar is a fiber which Howard W. Swank, general manager of Du Pont’s Textile Fibers Department, and other Textile Fibers Department’s managers were keen on. Kevlar is based on the former products of Du Pont, such as nylon, and Nomex Aramid fiber. Kevlar’s development was closely related to that of Nomex. It is a much stronger and stiff fiber than nylon and steel, and can be stable at high temperatures. After the Fiber-B first came out in 1960s, Du Pont found some problems with it. Two years later, Fiber B-1, which is also called Kevlar Aramid fiber, came out with better…show more content… In 1969, the Textile Fiber Department sent Fiber B’s samples to tire companies and aerospace companies, and it got good responses. When Fiber B-1 was developed, the Textile Fiber Department thought they understood how customers in the tire and aerospace industries would evaluated the new, better material, so the department did not do any preliminary assessments. Even though Fiber B-1 is superior to Fiber B, it still needs to be tested before putting it into the market in order to make sure it works well. The customers’ feedback is very important to a new product. Du Pont did not continue to do the sample tests and sample research which may cause some problems.
When Du Pont invented Kevlar, it did not have a specific target market, and it just followed its history market without creativity. Du Pont always wanted to produce a stronger fiber than before, and its market has always been tire and aerospace industries. After the promotion, Du Pont focused on the tire cord market. I think Du Pont chose the right market. The tire market is an existing market with large potential. From 1970 to 1973, the tire cord consumption was increasing from $539 million of pounds to $683 million of pounds. As radial tires entered the tire market, the older materials could not satisfy the properties of them, and only Kevlar and steel can be used in radial tires. It seems that Kevlar just needed to compete with steel. This is a