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Executive Summary
The last encounter most people have before going to sleep is with their alarm clock. The first encounter most people have the instant they wake up is with their alarm clock. Yet there have been no major innovations in the alarm clock industry since the 1950s (Ofek & Sherman, 2007). The dependence of humans on their alarm clock, the drive for a creative innovation, and the technical skills provided at MIT were all contributors to the invention of Clocky by 27-year old Gauri Nanda. Clocky is an alarm clock that jumps off the desk and starts rolling on the floor beeping, hence forcing the owner to get out of bed to turn it off. Nanda was blitzed by the media even before the product hit the markets. By generating merely a prototype and posting a couple pictures on the web, Nanda seemed to have solved the problem many people have getting out of bed early in the morning. However, considering her low budget and resources, lack of experience, and the seemingly high demand in the market place, producing Clocky and marketing the product was tricky. Since the product needed at least another year to be fully developed, Nanda faced a challenge whether or not to keep up the hype or let it die out. She also faced multiple challenges concerning what portion of the population to target, and what type of market to make Clocky accessible to.

Case Analysis

Nanda’s business model for Clocky faces multiple weaknesses and inherent challenges that pose a threat to the success of the product. Considering the financial and time constraints she is already under, prioritizing her threats could play a key role in delivering the product to the market with appropriate timing. First, Nanda needs to address the timeframe for her launch of Clocky in order to ensure that her product is readily available to the public during holiday season. In exhibit 8 of the case (Ofek & Sherman, 2007), studies show that Clocky would be a booming gift item; therefore Nanda would need to take full advantage of the timing of the launch of her product in order not to lose any share of the market. Second, choosing an image for her product is a major challenge. Nanda has multiple segments that she can target, and multiple distribution ways she can select to market Clocky (e.g. Sharper Image vs Walmart or Target). These factors will affect how Clocky would be perceived by the market and which segments of the market would be attracted to buy it. Nanda needs to ensure that that segment is the largest one she can get in order to be more profitable. Last but not least, she needs to calculate the startup costs, making sure that the right price is selected for Clocky in order to be sold in maximum volumes while making marginal profit. The key challenges facing Nanda’s business model could also be analyzed by the Five C’s of analysis [customer needs, company skills, competition, collaborators, context] (Harvard Business School Faculty, 2006). First, Nanda needs to select and size her potential market in order to ensure the delivery of the right product that matches the customer needs. Second, collaborators play a crucial role in the success of Clocky because according to the case, different distributing strategies can have very different results; therefore Nanda must choose her collaborators, or lack of them, very wisely. Third, Nanda must portray a consistent image for her company throughout Clocky and other products she might innovate in the future. Fourth, Nanda needs to acknowledge her potential competitors before she enters the market. She needs to do so in order to make sure she has a chance to survive and make a profit. The case mentioned that intellectual patent rights to Clocky are very complicated and if she chooses certain distribution methods, she would not be able to be in control of Clocky. She would also run into the risk of getting her ideas stolen if she decides to produce the products in a different country where intellectual property rights...
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