Eagle Eye; a study of the technique, early market and business potential
In 2009 the Norwegian Water and Resources and Energy Directorate (NVE) received 108 million NOK from the Norwegian Government to map land areas in risk for potential landslides. Norway, due to its geographical structure, is to a large extent exposed to geological hazards such as landslides. These arise due to that the strength in the ground deteriorate so far that the ground is no longer in equilibrium, but begins to move. Ground movement is due to natural processes but can also occur to underground construction work or extraction of oil and gas. Geologist can today by manual measurements detect ground movement over time and announce when an area is exposed for potential landslides. Manual measurements ground movement monitoring is efficient considering small land areas, however when one wants to monitor large areas (above 1km2) these methods can quickly become extremely time consuming and expensive. In addition, manual measurements do not enable monitoring in unreachable terrain and cannot provide historical ground movement data. Generic Synthetic Aperture Radar (GSAR) is a software platform developed by the Norwegian research institute Norut. This software can together with satellite data produce images illustrating ground movement and therefore help geologist to risk assess areas exposed for landslides. Norut believes that there is a commercial potential in GSAR however they do not possess any business competence. Therefore they contacted Technology Transfer Office Nord (TTO) AS to find entrepreneurs that possess competence to commercialize GSAR. Consequently TTO contacted us the three students at the master’s program Business Creation and Entrepreneurship to initiate the commercialization process as part of their master thesis. The project is today named Eagle Eye. We used both, primary and secondary data to evaluate the GSAR technology. By understanding its functions and possibilities in satellite surveillance we could discover that large scale monitoring was an application area where GSAR would provide most value to the customer. This knowledge was later used in a comprehensive market research to confirm the need for large scale monitoring and which customer groups Eagle Eye should target. We have made 20 qualitative interviews with potential customers to Eagle Eye and retrieved valuable customer information regarding their values, purchasing powers and their needs. The 20 different companies were later divided into seven different segments. After evaluating these segments we ended up with two most attractive segments named, Resource Extraction and Geo-Hazards. Eagle Eye will initially target these two segments by selling historical ground movement images of large areas and thereof provide extensive societal, economic and business value. In addition GSAR enables Eagle Eye to operate in several markets which opens up for high profitability and long-term sustainability.
ForlagUniversitetet i Tromsø
University of Tromsø
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