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Research and development of Nike
Throughout the technologies years, Nike Research and Development team has always been researching on the latest technologies and techniques to implement more improvements and develop further on their products –footwear and apparel lines.
Nike research and development laboratory team has been researching on their footwear this few years. They have come up with development on shoes like the Lunarlite technology which will create a most responsive and lightest cushioning material for Nike’s certain footwear, mostly for competitive athletes. Nike Sports and Research Lab has show studies that Lunarlite Foam would spread the whole pressure loads across the whole feet, thus reducing accumulative pain on their feet when running and also reduce impact on fragile bones. The result shows the new Luanrlite cushioning is 30% much better than the previous technology, Phylon.
While working on their past technology, Kevlar which is a light, strong para-ramid synthetic fiber use on the athlete shoe. Recently Nike has come up with a revolutionary technology, the Flywire.
Flywire comes about with embroidery by one of the members of the research and development team when he saw a simple embroidery machine which gives him the inspirations.
Flywire has high-strength threads work like cables on a suspension bridge with support engineered. Vectran is a high-performance multifilament yarn spun form liquid crystal polymer, is used to make the Flywire’s cables. This technology has spurn Nike Research and Development team to a greater edge in creating innovative idea. This technology has help Nike designer to cut the shoe weight by up to 50% which is a remarkable development. The Flywire cables will wrap around the foot much like tendons and the design was inspired by cables from the suspension bridge.
Not only on footwear technology, has Nike Research team improved on its apparel technology with the help of the Vectran treads which they have recently found out. The apparel would have Vectran treads throughout the chest and shoulder and totally adds a new kind of support but also original graphic look to the product, thus it could reduce wind resistance and keep the body temperature at a cooling and dry degree.
Product development and new product
The upcoming Beijing Olympics in August has bring consumer close attention to Nike’s product. Not to disappoint, Nike has recently launched its latest innovation, the Flywire track shoes, it has rise attention of many of the capability of the new product. This Flywire footwear comes in two pieces- the Zoom Victory Spikes and Zoom Mutumbo. This new footwear are constructed by the Vectran treads which was recently develop by the Nike research and develop team, thus making the footwear the lightest running shoe in the upcoming track and field event in Olympics. It will only supply to the US track and field team first before releasing it to the public in late October.
Nike has come out with all new apparel not only new footwear but an apparel that has redevelop and reconstruct by new-found technology of Vectran. The all new apparel is called Windrunner , which is an apparel develop from its previous product , Nike Fit( an upper body tights) . This new Windrunner enable to reduce wind resistance by 36% as compared to the previous product and also improve performance by cooling the temperature of the user.
Another new product would be launched together with the Flywire footwear is the Nike HyperDunk . The Nike HyperDunk is 18 percent lighter than the average Nike basketball shoe and is the lightest and strongest basketball shoe Nike has ever created. This product is partially made from the Flywire technology; therefore it is lightweight and strong.
With the Nike laboratory working on each particular area that is to develop, the research team has developed an idea of collaborating with Apple Company with their iPods. The research teams manage to develop iPod compatible footwear together with its own Nike footwear after a few years when Apple comes out with their all music player- iPod. Due to the popular demand, Nike sizes this opportunity together with Apple to research and development on the collaboration.
This first jointly produced product requires some mechanic components in the shoes and also an electronic sensor inserted under the inner sole of the shoe. Thus, the sensor talks to a small wireless receiver that attaches to the Apple iPod music player. The components work together to give voice prompts, interjected while the music is playing and keep track of the user running distance and timing. All the necessary jogging information like the distance covered and time taken can be uploaded into the user’s computer. The shoe from Nike would be equipped with a small sensor that can track motion and other metrics that runner may find it important. This digital technology from Nike together with Apple has made a revolutionary advancement.
Franchisor support services
Most importantly, franchising a business must have a strong franchisor support in order to meet any tough circumstances during the course of franchise. Communication would be a key part and play a critical role in franchising relationship; it plays a big role in interacting between the franchisee and the franchisor as they have to communicate over necessary information and details to each other. Therefore the franchisee would strive to be successful and more profitable.
Support services also include franchisee training. It allows the franchisee to comprehend the diversified area of operation for the business and therefore would not have any problem in operating the business. On top of that, the franchisee training could assist the franchisee to obtain the required standard of the business and also the image of the business itself which might be a key to success.
Marketing services is one of the support services provided by the franchisor. It allows having new product development, product improvement, sales analyst and essential target analysis. Franchisee needs to work with adequate and precise advertising mix with the franchisor in order to deliver to the local market.
Typical problems and risks
There are many typical and common problems that a franchise may face. For instance, problems like the waiver of legal rights because when purchasing a franchise, the franchise agreement will often require the prospective franchisee to waive his/her rights under applicable countries franchise law. Therefore there will be no fairness to the franchisee.
Second common problems are sourcing of supplies. Most franchise relationships order that franchisee’s purchase supplies, equipment, furniture or other items from the franchisor or sources affiliated or approved by the franchisor. Thus it shows that the franchisee has no freedom to source goods independently. The franchisee should allow purchasing goods that meet the franchisor’s standards and requirement
Lastly is the pricing of goods being supply. The franchisee must obligate the franchise agreement that all the prices of the goods shall be at a standard rate and not higher then the franchisor are offering. Therefore, the franchisee must follow and agree on what the franchisor’s pricing of goods. Failing which, the franchisee may clause the contract.
There are certain risks involving in franchise businesses. First of all on the positive side, there is a lower risk of failure. it is mainly due to the brand recognition and the standard that is set by the franchisor or the previous business. Thus, many people will know what to expect when they visit the stall itself.
On the other hand, the risk of franchising is that the startup cost for a franchise is often higher than starting other businesses. On top of that, buying a franchise means that the standard must be kept at a minimal level. Thus, offering what the consumer might expect.