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Teaser, summary, work performed and final results

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - ELECTRIC_AXLE (Electric axle for hybrid / electric commercial vehicles)


During the course of the project a Feasibility study has been elaborated, discussing the strategic, market, financial, technical, project management aspects of an electric axle to be realised. Several personal discussions have been carried with potential clients in order to...


During the course of the project a Feasibility study has been elaborated, discussing the strategic, market, financial, technical, project management aspects of an electric axle to be realised. Several personal discussions have been carried with potential clients in order to get a better view about customer needs, motivations and currently existing competing solutions.

Objectives of the elaborated feasibility study were as follows:
-To establish a firm basis for the proposal to be submitted in November 2015
-To summarise the results achieved in all fields (R&D, marketing, sales, funding, IP, project management)
-Determine the objectives of further work
-To write a detailed material for potential investors for Phase 3, which will be updated during Phase 2

Market study and business planning has shown that the there is real demand on the market, the product is both technically and by pricing competitive, freedom to operate analyses has not discovered any obstacle, Silex is capable to realise the project, there are already concrete contracts prepared to supply the axle. The only open issue is funding, i.e. to get the funds in Phase 2.

The impact of the project to Silex is:
-To upscale the company, i.e. to change the organisation from the current project-to-project working mode, which is based on highly devoted persons, to an organisation based operation.
-Silex’s formulated strategy is to provide total customer solutions at a competitive price / performance ratio. Currently Silex can provide complete body electronics solutions for commercial vehicles. By exploiting the currently underutilised IP in chassis, by the electric axle, Silex will be able to provide a highly integrated power-train solution too. As a consequence of the competence in the two most important parts of the vehicle, Silex will be able to provide system guarantee for the whole vehicle
-As a 60-80 employee company with a high level of organisation culture, Silex will fit much better to big players in the commercial vehicle business. Currently, in spite of Silex’s innovation abilities, the company is regarded much more as a risk factor, then a potential partner for large companies.
Outcome of the project is that Silex becomes in mid-term an innovative SME with 60-80 employees, 20-30 m€ turnover and 10-15% profitability, providing high added value, driven by technology, being active on the world markets and characterised by a high level of organisation culture.

Work performed

120 pages (without annexes) feasibility study has been elaborated during this period, with the following achievements:
- First, problem has been reviewed
- Silex’s business strategy has been formulated explicitly; the role of the project has been identified. Further steps in change management have been also assigned.
- A detailed market analyses has been elaborated.
First market has been segmented to on-road and off-road vehicles. Within on-road vehicles city bus, light commercial vehicle, hybrid truck chassis and hybrid bus chassis sub-segments have been identified. In the off-road segment telescopic handler and forklift sub-segments have been found as subject of further interest.
In all segments and sub-segments detailed analyses has been carried out to:
- identify current solution
- analyse economics pf the current solution
- calculate the economics of the proposed solution
- determine market size and growth rate and level of competition
- to identify other sub-segment specific constrains
- Competing solutions and competitors have been identified

Market strategy has been devised
- Constrains of the marketing strategy have been listed
- First benefits of the electric axle has been formulated
- Sub-segment specific strategy has been formulated using 4P method and SWOT analyses have been carried out.
- A product development strategy has been formulated (which sub-segment to serve first and second, how)
- Marketing objectives have been formulated
- Marketing tools have been devised

Sales concept has been formulated
- Channels have been defined, objectives set
- Results achieved so far have been reviewed (contracts prepared and signed during Phase 1)

A detailed technical concept has been formulated, covering all parts of the electric axle
- Current status of the development has been reviewed
- Applicable standards have been overviewed for all segments
- A specification has been elaborated for the 8,5 tons axle
- Qualification process has been presented
- Technical description of the axle’s parts has been given
- Basic concept ob production has been reviewed

A detailed business plan has been made and reviewed
- Current business of Silex has been presented (without electric axle)
- Business plans have been devised for 4 market scenarios (Worst case, Minimal, Realistic, Optimistic)
- For all scenarios investment evaluation data (RoI, EVA, IRR, pay-back time) have been calculated
- Risks have been identified, mitigation strategies elaborated

Project management plan has been worked-out
- First current status has been reviewed
- Project plan with WPs has been presented
- Budget of the project has been demonstrated, which has been broken down into categories of the financial statement. Costs have been explained and justified
- Project financing plan is reviewed
- Schedule is presented
- Commercialisation costs are listed and justified
- Project management issues are declared

IP management strategy has been elaborated
- First IPR is reviewed
- A freedom to operate analyses has been carried out
- IP management plan has been formulated

The whole feasibility study will be attached to the proposal of Phase 2.

Final results

Silex’s management is firmly devoted to realise the project. The feasibility study is a major step in this way, because:
- All details of the project have been properly elaborated
- Objectives of the further steps are clear and formulated
- It will serve as a good basis for funding, with H2020 Phase 2 in the first place

Realising the project will have the following impact:
- Silex will be up-scaled, its turnover will reach to 6-8 m€ by 2020, at significant profit. Number of employees will grow from current 12 to 50-70, contributing to establish new, high value added jobs
- The product increases European competitiveness, making vehicle manufacturers more competitive, increasing export to other non-European countries
- Europe needs innovative SMEs by all aspects, Silex can become one of the members in the ‘Champions League’

Website & more info

More info: