How the FirstBuild product cocreation studio is changing how new things are made
- In other words, it was really a great idea that engineers had been toying around with for years, but in the context of the focus and economics of a multibillion-dollar company, it wasn’t something that they could focus on.”The Opal nugget ice maker was FirstBuild’s first commercial success.
- If you’re a small appliances nerd, you may have seen its Opal nugget ice maker, the studio’s first big breakthrough; the Mella mushroom fruiting chamber; its indoor pizza oven; or the Arden indoor smoker.
- I spoke with André Zdanow, president at FirstBuild, to figure out where these ideas came from and how the studio is working to try to replicate those successes.“The most famous example is probably the Opal nugget ice maker.
- “It started with crude concepts that looked like an ice maker but had nugget ice in it.
- They wanted to put the “nugget ice” into a fridge but weren’t able to figure out exactly what the market size would be for such a thing.
- We decided to develop a prototype and see if people want it to be just an ice maker,” Zdanow explained.
If you are running R&D at a large appliance manufacturer, you have a challenge.You typically make products in enormous quantities at pretty slim margins. In order to recoup your development, to [+2575 chars]