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The speed, aggressiveness and $$$$ being put toward the commercialization of nanotech in Asia, has moved the locus of nanotech business to Asia.
November 5th, 2012
Asia's Rapid & Aggressive Drive Toward Nanotech Commercialization
The locus of nanotech business has been moved to Asia by the speed, aggressiveness and $$$$ being put toward the commercialization of nanotech in Asia.
Korean electronics giants are investing heavily in nanotech R&D. If (and when), some nanotechnology proves feasible, the Koreans will probably be first in the world to ramp it up. Korea is also home to cashed-up conglomerates that are looking for the ‘next thing'. These giants can buy up whole value chains, such as Hanwa Chemical did in the solar business. Or make strategic investments in nanotech companies, such as POSCO has in nano carbons.
This may be good news for nanotech companies looking for an exit or survival. On the other hand it can mean that your nanotech materials supplier ends up in the hands of your competitor. It's an important point that many of the small nanotech materials companies probably cannot survive as stand-alone businesses over the medium term. Who's going to buy your supplier or partner?
Chinese companies are rapidly moving up the value chain. Chinese companies are supplying many advanced materials markets previously dominated by Japanese suppliers-- from lithium ion battery materials to phosphor materials for LEDs. Most of these Chinese companies are focused on selling into the domestic Chinese markets. Remember, the domestic Chinese market is so huge that these companies can grow rapidly and can still end up being very large. In 10 years, some of these Chinese companies are going to be huge within China, even without going international. Today's global leaders from the U.S. or Europe are probably going to look small in comparison to the Chinese companies in 10 years.
NanoGlobe has noticed another interesting trend during our visits to companies in China. We have observed that Chinese companies are creating not only their own special processes in order to develop their companies' proprietary materials or products, but they are also designing their own equipment. Even venture companies. They do not want to be restricted to standard processes, so they have advanced to tuning that intimate link between equipment and process in order to improve their product even more.
NanoGlobe will detail more of these rapid developments in the battery, PV, nano carbon, printed electronics and other industries in future newsletters.
Whether you are big or small, NanoGlobe is always on the ground, there, ready to help you understand and navigate such opportunities and threats.
- Dr. Mark Foley, Senior Consultant, Japan