Lunch+Learn: New product development / reaching your customer successfully

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New Product Development for the entrepreneur / reaching your customer successfully

A description of how entrepreneurial new product development (NPD) differs from NPD at the Fortune 500 level and how this difference determines success for the small entrepreneur. Processes such as Stage-Gate and Agile will be reviewed and how they have adapted to the demands of rapid NPD. Finally a newer model of Entrepreneurial Stage-Gate will be proposed where building the business case is the most important stage of the process.


David Lupyon, Lupyon & Associates


David A. Lupyan has a B.S. & M.S. degree in Chemistry with a focus in material and surface science. He briefly attended the Darden business school at the University of Virginia at the onset of his R&D management career. He has been successful in new product commercialization in 4 different industries, (construction & building products, the automotive aftermarket, household goods, and the consumer optical markets). Mr. Lupyan began his career as an R&D manager [masked]) for the building products division of the Sandoz Chemical Corp. (Now BASF). During this time his team introduced the DELVO system of concrete hydration control which was recognized at the 1989 CanMat conference as one of the most significant innovations of the decade in the area of concrete and construction. He was then asked to transfer this technology to the Japanese market in 1990 where it then became adopted as an environmentally friendly way to re-claim excess concrete at the job-site. Beginning in 1991 he became the V.P. of R&D for the combined Blue Coral/Quaker State/Pennzoil Companies. Through new product introductions, his teams significantly grew the top line of all brands under the Pennzoil Company’s family of automotive aftermarket brands, e.g. Axius™, MEDO™, Blue Coral™, and Gumout™. These business units averaged 10-15% new product revenue to total product sales for six straight years. In more than one case (e.g. the Black Magic™ and Blue Coral™ brands) brand revenue more than doubled in revenue over this time period. After turning down a relocation to the Houston area in 2002, prior to the Shell acquisition of the Pennzoil Corp., he spent 3 years as the Director of Business Development (2002 – 2005) for a nano-technology start-up in the Cleveland area involved with various optical markets. He has recently retired from the Scott Fetzer Company (a subsidiary of the Berkshire- Hathaway Company) as a Business Unit Manager for the Scot Laboratories division and has started Lupyan & Associates to help others in the areas of new product development and commercialization. Mr. Lupyan was also the past president of the North East Ohio chapter of the PDMA (Product Development & Management Association) where its mission is to educate and expose business leaders of North East Ohio to world-class methodologies in new product development. The Cleveland Chapter won the “Chapter Excellence Award” in 2005.

Key Takeaways:
-Stay focused on what is important.
-Begin to build your business case.
-Measure your products value before you develop your “elevator speech”.
-Understand how the Fortune 500’s use Stage-Gate and develop their next-big-thing.
-Case studies from other entrepreneurs.

You can find David on LinkedIn