Research Reports: A Valuable Tool for Getting Up to Speed in the Marketplace: Part 4: Sales Executives Looking for Market Research Reports on the Safety Market Have Several from Which to Choose

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A prime source of packaged market studies is the Freedonia Group (Cleveland, Ohio, http://www .freedoniagroup.com). This international business research company, founded in 1985, publishes more than 100 industry research studies annually. Industry analysts at Freedonia offer reliable assessments of a variety of industries.

Freedonia studies include product and market forecasts, industry trends, threats and opportunities, competitive strategies, market share estimates and company profiles. More than 90 percent of the industrial companies in the Fortune 500 use Freedonia research to help with their strategic planning.

Freedonia's research provides industry knowledge through in-depth discussions of important industry activity and profiles of key industry players. The Freedonia Group publishes approximately 10 new titles each month. The reports combine product and market analyses into a neat, concise package that can be purchased and downloaded. Freedonia also sells individual chapters and pages from its studies.

In addition, Freedonia offers Focus reports that provide insights in 18 industry categories through 425 reports. Each report is about 15 pages, and offers Freedonia's concise outlook for the industry.

Besides marketers, other corporate executives rely on Freedonia studies. Freedonia's research can help executives determine market and sales potential, assess new products and competitors, identify merger and acquisition targets and complement an organization's internal research for mid--and long-term planning.

Corporate executives, for instance, have come to rely on Freedonia Custom Research, which can help organizations answer specific questions and address issues such as:

* New product launches/development

* Geographic expansion

* Entry into new markets

* Investment and funding decisions

When putting together market and industry reports, Freedonia's team of analysts begins by scouring trade publications, government source books, proprietary databases, product literature and annual and industry reports to find out what industry professionals have to say. To this, Freedonia adds information gained by extensive interviews with major players as well as knowledgeable industry participants.

One example of a packaged market study that yields a goldmine of information to safety and PPE marketers is the Freedonia Group's "Coated Fabrics to 2010" report (Study #2143), which was published in February 2007. There's a wealth of data, tables and charts in the study's 319 pages.

According to Freedonia study #2143, "Protective clothing is one of the fastest growing markets for coated fabrics. The protective clothing market was one of the four largest markets for coated fabrics in 2005, with eleven percent of sales. Protective clothing is designed to shelter the wearer from chemical, biological, heat and other risks in chemical, agricultural, medical, military and other industrial markets."

The report noted that consumer-oriented clothing products, such as raincoats and hats, fishing waders and other sporting and outdoor clothing, are not included under the protective clothing category, but are included under the category of "other markets."

Market Demand

Demand for coated fabrics in protective clothing applications is forecast to advance 6.7 percent annually to 90 million square yards in 2010, Freedonia predicted in this report. Freedonia analysts noted, "Advances will continue to be driven by the ongoing need to add and update U.S. military equipment as it becomes damaged or wears out. Additional gains will stem from interest on the part of the federal, state and local first response agencies to be better prepared for possible terrorist attacks using nuclear, biological or chemical weapons, although the level of spending is expected to decline from the historically high levels immediately following the Sept. …