As a global operating company TenCate develops and produces functional materials with distinctive characteristics and added value. These materials contribute – in modules or in systems – in a positive way to progress of social, ecological or economical issues. Safety and protection, sustainability and the environment are key global trends.
In a technology-driven world should risks for people, environment and equipment remain manageable wherever possible. Then, sustainable protection is our guidance.
For the development and production of new functional materials TenCate draws from technological change. Improvements and innovations in techniques and technologies can also be realized outside the core areas of TenCate. Because textile technologies and basic technologies (such as chemical engineering) develop from materials technology into materials science, new functional materials replace existing or future creations.
Derived from the business model of TenCate, the company employs a model for managing innovation. The four cornerstones contribute individually to the required fundamental renewal in the short, medium and long term.
In the medium term, the renewal of (product) specifications at customer level is necessary to properly keep in touch with ongoing social developments and changing customer needs.
TenCate constantly identifies technological developments based on the technology roadmap of each division. From the so called enabling technologies derive new materials, modules and systems. On the basis of these solutions in the – near or far – future new product-market-technology combinations can arise within our company. In the long term, the renewal of existing enabling techniques or technologies in the processes is necessary to efficiently continue producing in a cost effective manner. Two types of technology innovation can be distinguished:
- Sustaining technology innovation. Technology innovation can be supporting to existing production processes. A sustaining technology innovation only evolves existing markets or value networks with better value, allowing the TenCate company to compete with sustaining improvements. Sustaining technology innovations may be either evolutionary or revolutionary.
- Disruptive technology innovation. A disruptive technology innovation helps to create a completely new market or value network, and eventually goes on to disrupt an existing market and value network over a period of a few years or decades, displacing an earlier technology or technique. A disruptive technology innovation improves a product, module or system in ways that the market does not expect. It creates a breakthrough change.
For TenCate, product innovation is ‘business as usual’. It is the differentiation of the existing product portfolio with the creation and subsequent introduction of improved or new related products or related services.