In 1999 LOBO Systems, based in Derby, UK, received a website enquiry from NASA. This was the start of an American relationship that has taken some 10 years to bare fruit.
The resultant small order from NASA was proof that demand existed for LOBO’s patented work platform system from the world’s biggest and vibrant economies.
US market penetration is no half hearted task to undertake, particularly for a small company with virtually no budget and limited resources.
A mix of trade shows and dedicated customer visits is the way LOBO Systems eventually secured a precious foot hold that has now lead to the creation of LoboUsa Inc ,with corporate offices in St Louis.
LOBO has shown through grim determination and a tenacious approach what can be achieved, but it has taken time, taking small meaningful steps.
Getting a helping hand from a corporate makes a huge difference and this is where The Boeing Company, based in St Louis, Missouri, entered the arena. At the Atlanta National Safety Show, one of Boeing’s Industrial Participation Managers was walking the show and came across the LOBO Systems’ stand. The Boeing employee noticed the uniqueness of the LOBO product and was impressed enough to recommend LOBO to work with the Boeing IP department. However there were a number of boxes that had to be ticked. Firstly the product had to be unique, that is it had to be a product that was not already being manufactured or available in the USA.
Secondly it had to be a product that Boeing, or its supply chain, would purchase and thirdly it had to be manufactured in the UK.
With all three requirements met, the LOBO System was eligible to participate and US sales could be used as offset credits with the UK MOD.
Industrial Participation credits are vital to The Boeing Company if they wish to pursue MOD contracts, they have a strict obligation to meet this criterion. If they can’t meet them, Boeing are much less likely to win any future orders from the UK government.
So it‘s a vital component to have in order to meet their long term business objectives. The concept is really quite simple;
Each time LOBO made a US sale, Boeing was able to claim the offset credits. It was win win situation for all parties and for LOBO it made all the
Through careful management and with a long term strategic plan, Boeing was able to introduce the LOBO System into areas that would be otherwise out of reach and impossible for a small UK based company, to penetrate. General Motors, Ford Motor Company and many areas within Boeing were just some of the success wins attributable to the effort.
And this relationship remains in place today and grows stronger each time new application areas within Boeing emerge. Any company large or small can have access to the US market.
LOBO has proved beyond a shadow of doubt it can be achieved without huge resources but with tenacity and a long term goal oriented approach, coupled with a professional and innovative product.