A project team from Stanley Black & Decker, a US$12.7 billion diversified manufacturing firm, noticed something problematic when observing customers using the company’s products at construction sites. Tools such as miter saws and table saws needed higher voltage than the 20-volt systems commonly used for hand tools such as drills and circular saws. As a result, contractors were using extension cords or gasoline generators. But the former were inconvenient and created hazards, and the latter brought noise and pollution. After making these observations, Stanley Black & Decker developed the DeWalt line of “FlexVolt” cordless power tools and battery packs. They’ve been quickly embraced by professional contractors — generating $300 million in incremental sales since the line’s 2016 introduction.
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