AN EVALUATION OF PRODUCT INNOVATION AS A STRATEGY FOR THE SURVIVAL OF MANUFACTURING FIRMS IN NIGERIA
This research work is to examine the effect of product innovation as a strategy for the survival of manufacturing firms in Nigeria, a case study of Ama Breweries (Nig) Plc Enugu. To carry out the research work Ama Breweries were uses as a sample which was drawn from zone. In the case of research useful on finding, good application were made which among other include good combination materials as the case may be and as it was recovered that it makes to help new product to look more attractive to the people made the product for. In the other hand, product innovation helps the firms to be competing on the newly available products with its competitors. It was also observed that a lot of factors contribute to the failure of the impediment to the success of product innovation which includes product labeling, packaging, branding and product positioning. Effect has been made to solve all these problem, however relevant information will be obtained from staff of Ama Breweries industries and their distributors through questionnaire moreover, the analysis and data collection of the respondents. Finally, the summary of the findings will help the researcher to make recommendation on the best way to achieve company objectives through innovation.
1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Production innovation is important in any dynamic economy. It determines both the level of economic growth and standard of living of the citizens product innovation takes long to spread through the social system.
Most of the product in the market today have undergone changes overtime. Some that were in the market year ago have phased out with new product are introduced into the market on a continuous basis. When some existing company’s product enter decline stage there is need to carryout product innovation.
Furthermore, customers want new products and competitors must do their best to supply them these products. Competition has played a major role in encouraging Ama Breweries Nigeria Plc Enugu to carry out product innovation. This is because of the desire of the company to better its distinctive advantage over the competitors.
A company can add new product through acquisition and new products innovation. The acquisition route can take three forms. Ones the company can buy other companies, it can buy franchise or license from other company. In those case the company does not innovate new product but acquires the right to existing one.
However, Ama Breweries Nigeria Plc, had suffered much danger and uncertainties in product innovation. This danger are basically on the area of finance and human resource wastage without achieving success, in production of the product innovation which say that its either you innovate those basic factors not withstanding Ama Breweries Nigeria Plc recognized that they act to remain in business for considerable time.
Product innovation which is regarded as introduction of new product or modification of the existing ones either by changing the physically structure of the product or its package or the quality to meet the consumers need of Ama Breweries Nigeria Plc, Enugu and basic concern of this research work.
BRIEF HISTORY OF AMA NIGERIA PLC ENUGU
Nigeria Breweries Plc, incorporated in the 1946, is the pioneer and largest brewing company in Nigeria. Its first bottle of beer star large rolled off the bottling lines of its logos brewing in June 1949. Other Breweries were subsequently commissioned by the company, including Aba Brewery in 1963, and Ibadan brewing 1982.
In September 1993, the company acquired its fifth breweries, sited at Ameke in Enugu State. Ama Breweries is the largest breweries in Nigeria and of the most modern worldwide operation. Enugu brewing were discounted in 2004, while the company acquires a malting plant in Aba in 2008.
In October 2011 Nigeria Breweries acquired majority equally interest in Sona system associates business management limited (Sona system) and life breweries limited from Heineken N.V this followed Heineken acquisition of controlling interest in five breweries in Nigeria.
Sona system is two breweries in Ota and Kaduna, life breweries in Onitsha have now become part of Nigerian Breweries Plc. Together with the three brand, Goldberg, Larger, Malta Gold and life routine of the Lager.
Nigeria Breweries Plc, now has eight operational breweries from which its products are distributed into all parts of Nigeria, in addition to the malting plants in Aba and Kaduna.
The company has profound of high-quality brands including Star Larger (1970) place larger, legend extra stout (1990) Abu extra stout, however larger (October 2011), Star life Larger (February 2014), pale large. Ace passion apple spark (December 2014), Alcohol free drinks.
Maltina (1997) in three variation, namely: Maltina classion, Maltina strawberry and Maltina pineapple: Maltina sip-it (200% in Tetrapala, Amstel Malta (1994), fayrouz in pear and pineapple (2006) Climax energy Malta Gold (October 2011).
Most of the products are in returnable bottles and all products are available in cans Fayrouz is also P.E.T bottles.
The company head office are located in Lagos.
1.1 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
In any competitive market enough, the marketing practitioners is often faced with ordering of how to determine the nature of demand for his product in a given market segment. In view of this, a lot of problems came up to plan for product innovation which include:
i. Inadequate Capital: Inadequate capital has been major problem of Ama Breweries Nigeria Plc, in trying to plan product innovation, it was observed that product innovation requires a lot of capital since a lot of planning has to be made and the management of Ama Breweries Nigeria Plc was unable to provide the capital required. However, this is difficult for the company to innovate.
ii. Inadequate time for the planning of the product innovation is another factor that militate against the success of the company in an effect to innovate their product. However, the allocation by the management for the planning of product innovation is usually very short which makes it difficult for them to achieve the objective product innovation.
iii. Inadequate Information on product innovation is also another factor that render product as a life wire of every organization planning activities, the organization cannot do without accurate and timely information. However, the organization may be abstained from the company customer, sales people and from the competitor’s activities. In view of this company it was unable to obtain the necessary and required information that will help toward product innovation.