Quantum Technologies: A Non-Financial Analysis
Despite losses in market share and revenue over the past several years, quantum Technologies remains a leading innovator of alternative energy power trains for automobiles, carbon composite fuel storage vessels and other efficiency-enhancing features of motor vehicles, solar panels for use in stationary electricity production, and a host of other renewable energy technologies (Quantum 2011). The company has struggled under rising costs and a lack of demand for its products that require greater up-front expenditures from consumers during the recent economic recession, and the past three years have shown very poor performance in terms of market reach and sales numbers for the company (Fool.com 2011; Yahoo 2011; Google 2011). Throughout this period, however, the company continued to research and develop new products that keep the company a competitive choice.
At present, an exclusive contract with luxury electric and hybrid car manufacturer Fisker to produce solar panels for its Karma series promises to revitalize Quantum and place it back at the forefront of the alternative energy industry (Fool.com 2011; Quantum 2011). Continued diversification of the product offerings and research areas that Quantum Technologies remains involved in presents many opportunities for future growth as well as the ability to create effective branding, establishing the company as the source for alternative energy technologies Quantum 2011). Government subsidies for the adoption of renewable energy technologies and long-term savings as well as ethical incentives are expected to increase the market size and Quantum’s market share as the global economy recovers (Google 2011; Yahoo 2011).
Quantum faces competition in several sectors, but does not really have a perfect competitor operating in all of the same industries and product lines that Quantum offers (Google 2011; Yahoo 2011). Primary competitors include BorgWarner, Inc., one of the leading manufacturers of drive-train and power-train components for traditional motor vehicles as well as industrial and agricultural vehicles; with no specialization in renewable energies, this company does not exactly compete directly with Quantum, but when energy source is considered optional BorgWarner’s products can absolutely be produced cheaper than Quantum’s, and are found in many vehicles (Yahoo 2011). At the other end of the spectrum, SatCon Technology Corp. creates utility-grade renewable energy sources for business; more direct competition is experienced with various products produced by this company, and in recent years SatCon has been more effective at securing industrial contracts (Google 2011).
Market trends are clearly leading to greater sales of “green” technologies as more and more consumers become aware of these products and the need for alternative energies (Fool.com 2011; Quantum 2011). It is expected that ten years from now, solar panels will be standard features in new home construction and utility department expansions, creating a great deal of increased demand for Quantum Technology’s products. If these market trends continue even twenty years out, which seems likely as such technologies become cheaper to adopt the more they proliferate, Quantum could well be established as one of the leading providers of energy technologies in utility and motor vehicle use (Fool.com 2011; Quantum 2011).
The current shift away from traditional energy technologies and towards a greater dependence on renewable energy sources and the technologies that allow for energy creation, storage, and distribution from such sources will have an enormous impact on Quantum Technologies over the next ten and twenty years. The company is itself a major driver of innovation in this area, and the efficiency of renewable energy engines and power generators will decrease the cost of operations for the company even as the same products and efficiency increases will enhance and increase its sales (Quantum 2011). Twnety years from now, it is expected that major utility grids will at least be in the beginning stages of being capable of handling energy input from renewable sources, and this will increase industrial demand for many of Quantum Technology’s products enormously (Foo.com 2011).
Quantum Technology’s diversification is a major strength of the company, as it is somewhat shielded from major changes in any one application or industry in which its products are used. A weakness can be found in its dependence on external business contract and a lack of direct-to-consumer sales. A large opportunity exists for the company in the current economic recovery, however, which is likely to be accompanied by renewed interest in renewable technologies and provide a wider market of consumers willing to pay premium for renewables. Major consumer vehicle manufacturers have largely ignored Quantum in favor of other companies or in-house technologies, which threatens to erode this opportunity,
From a political standpoint, Quantum Technology is still a relatively strong company; political incentives to move to renewables have helped to pressure consumers, industries, and public utilities/governments to adopt renewable energy technologies such as those produced by Quantum. Economic factors have not been favorable for the company, especially given its luxury associations, but this trend appears to be reversing with the current global recovery (Google 2011). Following (and in many regards leading) the political pressure to develop alternative and renewable energy sources, social pressures and trends have been moving towards “green” products and innovations as well, which is also a boost for the company (Fool.com 2011). Technological forces have also been a boost to the company, as its own research and other developments are increasing the pace at which this industry is expanding and can become potentially mainstreamed (Quantum 2011; Yahoo 2011).
There is great value potential in Quantum Technology’s products, as they can derive a maximum benefit from the trend towards renewable energy use. Such resources are also not manufactured by many firms increasing the rarity and thus potential profitability of Quantum’s offerings (Fool.com 2011). Imitability presents something of an issue, as other companies do produce similar items, but this firms is very organized and ready to capitalize on its capabilities.
Fool.com. (2011). Quantum Technology. Accessed 21 February 2011. http://caps.fool.com/Ticker/QTWW.aspx
Google. (2011). Quantum Technology. Accessed 21 February 2011. http://www.google.com/finance?q=NASDAQ:QTWWD
Quantum Technology. (2011). Accessed 21 February 2011. http://www.qtww.com/
Yahoo. (2011). Quantum Technology. Accessed 21 February 2011. http://finance.yahoo.com/q;_ylt=AhaLdmQNG8PmBjKzPsLwg2bxVax_;_ylu=X3oDMTFiNnU5dWY1BHBvcwMxMgRzZWMDeWZpU3ltYm9sTG9va3VwUmVzdWx0cwRzbGsDcXR3d2Q-?s=QTWWD
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