beachhead

[beech-hed]
noun
1.
the area that is the first objective of a military force landing on an enemy shore.
2.
a secure initial position that has been gained and can be used for further advancement; foothold: The company has won a beachhead in the personal computer market.

Origin:
1935–40; beach + head

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World English Dictionary
beachhead (ˈbiːtʃˌhɛd)
 
n
1.  an area on a beach that has been captured from the enemy and on which troops and equipment are landed
2.  the object of an amphibious operation
 
[C20: modelled on bridgehead]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

beachhead
1940, in ref. to Ger. military tactics in World War II, from beach + head, on the model of bridgehead, but the image doesn't quite work.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
We took a stroll on the beach along the line of boats on the beachhead.
Not every alien will manage to break out of its beachhead.
Either way, it's got plenty of new content to sell ads against, and a beachhead
  on mobile devices that other video services lack.
It could also be a beachhead for similar projects in other cities.
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