In this case study, CPL Business Consultants was engaged by an international sugar and sweeteners company to assess the potential of an isomaltooligosaccharide (IMO) business opportunity.  CPL gave a candid and unvarnished opinion on the company and its products and uncovered some interesting facts which had not been divulged. The client was therefore able to make an informed decision on the market potential and strategic value of this opportunity. 


The objective of this project was to assess for our client the overall business potential of isomaltooligosaccharide (IMO) products as prebiotics and/ or low-calorie sweetener. Our client wished to seek an external opinion on whether to pursue this business opportunity and, if so, how it should go about this.

This study addressed the overall business potential of IMO products for our client and answered the following questions:

  1. Does this product fit well with the client’s business?
  2. Is there a potential market for this product?
  3. How should this product be positioned in Europe and elsewhere?
  4. How does this product compare to other soluble fibres?
  5. Is it worth investing a significant amount of effort working on the regulations and science in order to get this product to market?


This study assessed and analysed the issues in sufficient depth to allow strategic conclusions to be drawn.

The main contents of the study were based on the information provided by the client to CPL CPL as well as sources, including in-house data, CPL‘s network of contacts (the CPL Value-Net) and publicly available information (e.g. data from government agencies, patents, scientific journals, trade press and internet etc.).

Click to see the contents of the study or look below for an outline.

Isomaltooligosaccharide (IMO) Business Potential

Principal Findings and Conclusions

  • Food Cost Model
  • Pricing and Cost in Use
  • Production
  • Sales
  • Patents
  • EU Approval
  • Marketing and Health Claims

Answers Client’s Specific Questions, and Recommendations

Market for Soluble Fibres

  • Markets & Trends
  • Manufacturers and Products
  • Polydextrose
  • Low Calorie Bulking Agents
  • Soluble Fibres

Low Glycaemic Index Products Market

  • Market
  • Value of a Low GI Claim
  • Other Competing Substitute Products

The  Isomaltooligosaccharide Product

  • Invention and Subsidy
  • The Chinese Connection
  • Import Activity Details
  • Imports of IMO from China
  • Canadian Press Article on IMO
  • Chinese Press Articles on IMO
    • Isomaltooligosaccharide Production in China
    • IMO Industry Thriving In China

Isomaltooligosaccharide Costs and Market Opportunities

  • Cost in Use Model for IMO in Foods
    • B2B Prices for IMO
  • Effect on the Costs of Raw Materials on IMO Price
  • Results from CPL Retail Price Model
  • Comparison with Prices of Other Soluble Fibre Ingredients

Manufacturers of Isomaltooligosaccharides

  • Overviews of 11 IMO Companies

Products Containing IMO

  • Japan
  • China
  • USA
  • Singapore


  • Companies Contacted
  • IMO Technologies
  • Effects of IMO On the Gut Flora
  • Production

Health Claims

  • EFSA Health Claims Submitted
  • EFSA Opinion on Blood Cholesterol Claim
  • Blood Glucose Claims


  • Production Patents for IMO
  • Applications Patents for IMO
  • Recent Product Patents
  • Patent Portfolio


  • CPL Q&A with Company
  • Prices of Oligosaccharides in Japan

Have a look at our PowerPoint Introduction and Brochure describing deliverables, differentiators and case studies. You can also review eight case studies.

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