Synthes Case

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Synthes Case Study

Team S
Santiago Sanchez Villalba
Bharat Pawar
Morris Li
Jose Llanos
Tiia Paananen

What are the different threats to the sustainability of Synthes` competitive advantage?

Synthes has several threats to consider in the near and upcoming future. The first threat we can talk about is with regards to imitation. Imitation is a big deal in the internal fixation device industry. Synthes has become the leader in this market due to several competitive advantages, for example the affiliation with AO, which surgeons take as a sign of confidence. These advantages have been able to sustain them with huge market share and very high sales during the last 20 years. They have also created other competitive advantages within
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The threat level is still low because the first trial of bioresorbable failed and the second generation has not yet fully convinced surgeons. But most doctors seem open to the idea or already use some of the bioresorbable derivatives to substitute some of Synthes` products today. The difference from the first generation bioresorbable products to the second one improved drastically and the third generation could eventually be almost as effective as today’s solutions. If Synthes is not fully prepared there could be a very big threat to the company not only in sales but also reputation because they are known for being the top dog and always offering the newest products for internal fixation. A company with a similar strategy (affiliation to AO, good sales reps, high quality product) could not only imitate but also substitute if the product part were to be able to be effective and accepted by doctors. Although there are threats in a competitive industry such as this one, we believe that Synthes has enough actual and probable competitive advantages to sustain throughout time as a leader in the internal fixation industry. When we discuss the S-Curve for Synthes, we could see that bioresorbable technology is slow and improving poorly because it is not understood quite well. If anybody gets it right we could see the acceleration process and this is where Synthes would be highly
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