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Some industries appear kinder to entrepreneurs than others.
Silicon Valley can make it look like anyone with exceptional coding skills can create a disruptive product, but certain sectors can prove challenging for innovators trying to realise their game-changing ideas – especially when they’re up against well-established industry giants.
This is the obstacle faced by many great minds within the more traditional fields of engineering, such as heavy industries. Whether innovated by a sole inventor or a start-up headed by an engineer, the most brilliant pieces of technology can still fail to get to market because the cost barriers to entry are so high. Building new technologies or processes often requires significant capital investment or large-scale equipment, neither of which is easy to come by for small teams or independent innovators.
For example, if an advanced engineering start-up has developed a disruptive metal processing method that cannot be rolled out in a small lab alone, one might think they would need to find the capital to build an entirely new and expensive plant before they can move the invention forward.
Equally, if an inventor has created a new component for, say, a food manufacturing system, securing deployment for something that makes up just a small part of the entire manufacturing process can be near impossible.
As a result, good ideas get shelved because they are simply too expensive to implement. This can see people give up on their ideas too early.
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