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Honing a Competitive Edge

By: Brian W. Budzynski and Jeff Falk
Posted: April 30, 2009, from the May 2009 issue of GCI Magazine.

page 6 of 6

The company, in fact, focused on the development of skin and beauty care to improve its position across beauty markets clear in late 2008 through the sale of a number of brands not reconcilable with this strategy.

In 2008, the Germany-based company posted group sales of €5,971 million, a 7.5% growth over 2007 (€5,507 million) and the highest recorded in the company’s 125-year history, yielding a post-tax profit of €567 million. Utilizing its “Passion for Success” strategy—which synthesizes branding, supply chain, geographic market positioning and performative innovation—the company fueled a global marketing machine behind its Nivea brand—and realized double-digit increases in every positioned market, culminating in 10% worldwide growth. Backed by this strategic matrix, the company unveiled several innovative products, including the Nivea Visage Expert Lift and Nivea Beautiful Age lines specifically for women over 50, and expanded its Nivea For Men line with Silver Protect deodorant, for example, which uses silver molecules to actively combat bacteria. And if such success were not enough, Nivea was voted Most Trusted Skin Care Brand by the readers of Reader’s Digest magazine, in all three categories—skin care, cosmetics and hair care.