Future of the Cleanroom Industry
No one wants to be the buggy whip manufacturer when it comes to new technology, they want to be Henry Ford. Sometimes it’s better to be Firestone. Firestone was already established as a manufacturer of tires for wagons and buggies in 1900 before Henry Ford selected them to be the official tire of his Model T in 1906. Some people say it was coincidence that Harvey Firestone became good friends with Ford before his Model T started mass production and others will say Firestone saw a good business opportunity and made it happen. The growth of secondary industries is an opportunity for the cleanroom industry to grow and profit with them. The cleanroom industry is growing. There is more demand for cleanrooms, for a variety of purposes, than a decade ago. Right now the cleanroom industry is worth an estimated 3 billion dollars in 2015 and is projected to grow to 3.8 billion dollars by 2020, a 27% increase. That’s a change equivalent to the entire national output of Grenada for a year. The biotech industry has grown at 11% annually between 2010 and 2015, the nanotechnology sector by 19% between 2011 and 2014, and the pharmaceutical industry is projected to grow by 31% between 2013 and 2018. Growth in sectors that require cleanroom environments are driving the sudden growth in the cleanroom industry.
There are new advances made everyday in medicine, biomedical engineering, microprocessors, nanotechnology, and other fields sectors. A constant influx of All these brilliant ideas are going through the process of becoming physical things and they need a place to be built. Modern drugs need to be made in sterile environments, biomedical research can’t risk contamination., A a stray hair can ruin a quarter million dollar batch of processors, and nanotechnology works on such a small scale that any sized contaminant can be a disaster. This is where the The best part comes into play, if you’re already established in the cleanroom business… someone has to build those cleanrooms. It’s not just the technology being made in the cleanroom that‘s advancing, its the clean rooms themselves. Softwall cleanrooms are the most popular method of constructing a cleanroom, but new manufacturing techniques like modular hardwall cleanroom construction is are becoming increasingly popular. Hardwall cleanrooms are growing in popularity for a number of reasons including design flexibility, ease of construction and reduced installation cost. When businesses decide to purchase a cleanroom it’s a major capital expense and they know that a properly maintained cleanroom should last for decades. With that in mind, forward-thinking businesses are putting a premium on newer, more efficient systems. Energy efficient decentralized air filters, decontamination systems designed to be almost maintenance free, a general shift to modular design for all pieces of cleanroom equipment are examples of new versions of cleanroom equipment. Not every customer will need the cutting edge technology, but some will find value in future proofing their facility during construction. If you’re already established in the cleanroom construction industry, the next few years should be rewarding and profitable. With all of this projected growth we see two ways to capitalize on this extra potential revenue, maximizing during the boom or planning for long term growth. There’s a catch though, these high growth rates won’t last forever. Eventually the supply of cleanrooms being built will catch up to the demand of the market and things will slow down. If there are projects you have to pass on due to lack of people or equipment, consider scaling up. In industries that require specialized construction processes, look at breaking into those markets and providing cleanroom solutions for emerging needs.
Much like how knowing is only half the battle, building a cleanroom is only half of the job. We could make the most cutting edge, state of the art cleanroom and it would still need to be maintained or it would become a cutting edge, state of the art non-functioning cleanroom. Disposable items, like gloves and wipes, make up ⅔ of the cleanroom industry product sales. With every new cleanroom built there’s a new cleanroom that has surfaces to be wiped, filters to be changed, and workers to be gloved and properly garmented. While cleanrooms can only be purchased and built once, disposables are purchased over and over again, sustaining long term growth of disposable sales for every cleanroom built. Building a retail division from a construction company is a great use of extra profits. Most cleanroom retailers won’t have the chance to use a sudden influx of profits to create new divisions within their company though. What they can do during this time of growth is focus on making their business as efficient as possible. A major advantage in the long run for retailers is the knowledge they already have. Think about the charts that encourage people to start saving while they’re young. They show the lifetime difference between investing 20 instead 30 and that return of investing at 20 blows 30 out of the water. Your knowledge of the industry is your investment capital. Having a head start on people coming into the retail side of the industry is huge. When you know there’s going to be an increased demand for your goods for the next 10-15 years, making investments in your company is a much easier decision to make. A new inventory system, for example, that seems too expensive now, will be worth it over the lifespan of the system due to the increased amount of business it allows you to do. With the growth of its underlying industries, the cleanroom sector is growing at an impressive rate and is projected to continue that growth for the next few years. And Hutchins & Hutchins, Inc. is here to help you and your company get the most out of that growth in the coming years, being Your Cleanroom Supplier!