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DeAnne Aguirre Paul Leinwand Sudeshna Saha Aurelie Viriot

The Power of Managing Brands Globally Lessons from the CPG Sectors Most Successful Players

Booz & Company is a leading global management consulting firm, helpingthe worlds top businesses, governments, and organizations. Our founder, Edwin Booz, defined the profession when he established the first management consulting firm in 1914. Today, with more than 3,300 people in 58 offices around the world, we bring foresight and knowledge, deep functional expertise, and a practical approach to building capabilities and delivering real impact. We work closely with our clients tocreate and deliver essential advantage. For our management magazine strategy+business, visit www.strategy-business.com. Visit www.booz.com to learn more about Booz & Company.

Paul Leinwand

San Francisco
Deanne Aguirre
Senior Partner 415-627-3330 deanne.aguirre@booz.com

Partner 312-578-4573 paul.leinwand@booz.com

Sudeshna Saha

Principal 415-627-4287 sudeshna.saha@booz.com

Aurelie Viriot

Senior Associate 415-627-4279 aurelie.viriot@booz.com


Lessons from the CPG Sectors Most Successful Players

Executive Summary
The question of how to manage global brandssuch as CocaCola, Gillette, and Nestl, as well as those with less global recognition, such as Wrigley, Avon, and Campbellsacross a set of diverse geographies has spurred significant debate among consumer packaged goods (CPG) companies. The complexity stems in part from the fact that there are very few truly global brands: CPG global brands are more often multinational or regional. Of the top 100 recognized global brands, just 21 are from the CPG sector, and only 14 of them have a value of more than US$5 billion (see Exhibit 1, page 2).

As CPG companies have turned to developing markets and regional expansion as their primary paths to growth, their ability to develop truly global brands and to manage portfolios of brands globally has become essential. The geographic diversity of CPG companies businesses, as well as the relative importance of international business to the overall portfolio, has reached unprecedented levels. For instance, European companies Unilever and Nestl have long had global reach, but their international business is on the rise: Unilever now derives 62 percent of its revenues from outside Europe, compared to 54 percent a decade ago, while Nestl has seen a similar increase to 63 percent from 58 percent. Meanwhile, Wrigley and Procter & Gamble now see 67 percent and 54 percent of their sales, respectively, coming from outside North America (up from 52 percent and 50 percent a decade ago). There are clear benefits to the development of global brands and, more broadly speaking, to global coordination across brands and markets. Companies can

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Exhibit 1
Top CPG Global Brands
Best Global Brands2007 Interbrand Ranking Brand Value (Dollars in Billions)
65.3 58.7 57.1 51.6 33.7 32.1 31.0 29.4 29.2 23.6 23.4 22.2 21.6 21.3 20.8 20.4 20.3 19.1 18.0 17.8 13.0 12.9 11.7 9.3 7.0 6.5 6.0 5.8 5.3 5.1 5.0 4.6 3.7 3.7 3.6 3.4 3.4 3.1

Rank Top 100 Global Brands: Breakdown by Sector 100% 100%

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 24 26 30 40 51 53 57 59 63 65 67 70 85 86 87 90 91 96

Coca-Cola Microsoft IBM GE Nokia Toyota Intel McDonald's Disney Mercedes Citi HP BMW Marlboro American Express Gillette Louis Vuitton Cisco Honda Google Nescaf Pepsi Budweiser Kellogg's LOral Heinz Colgate Wrigley Nestl Avon Danone Kleenex Mot & Chandon Kraft Hennessy J&J Smirnoff Nivea


Other 80%

Diversified Consumer Electronics


Financial Services



Automotive 20% CPG* 0%

Percentage of Brands in Top 100 Global Brands

Percentage of Value of Top 100 Global Brands

Total: 100 brands

Total: US$1.156 billion

21 CPG Brands in Top 100, Valued at $220 billion

* CPG encompasses the food, beverage, alcohol, personal care, and tobacco sectors Sources: Interbrand Best Global Brands 2007; Booz & Company

find synergies all along the value chain, from consumer insights, to innovation, to sourcing, to marketing. However, they must walk a fine line in developing these capabilities globally: On the one hand, doing so allows companies to achieve the benefits of scale,

and speed their expansion in new markets by quickly applying best practices learned in one region to other geographies. On the other hand, without the right structure in place to manage these capabilities, companies are likely to see increased organizational complex-

itywhich brings its own challenges in terms of local market relevance and speed-to-market. In managing these tradeoffs, CPG companies have been experimenting with a variety of structures in the oversight of their global brands. Many have gone from

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a regional approach to a global approach; some have even reverted to a regional approach to get the balance right. Clearly, a one-size-fits-all structure is not an option for the industry, and likely not for any complex portfolio. In this article, we review the potential benefits and challenges of developing global brands and coordinating brand portfolios globally; identify the factors that drive the appropriate level of global brand management across the value chain; and review key implications and principles for successful implementation.

advantages from whatever model they choose: better results from their innovation investment, more rapid geographic expansion, and greater global brand equity. Innovation investment: In todays CPG environment, competitive advantage and meaningful differentiation are increasingly dependent on superior R&D. In fact, companies greatest gains from global brand management stem from their ability to coordinate innovation activities across products, brands, and markets, and thus amortize the investment. There has been some debate about whether innovation can really be globally applicable, given the widely varying needs of particular brands and the differences between markets. However, we find that core technologies and product innovations have far more global reach than some have assumed. Innovation and consumer insight can be broadly relevant across markets; both P&G and Kimberly-Clark have used insights from emerging markets to develop and market products for lowincome consumers in developed countries. For instance, they gained a deeper understanding in emerging markets of how consumers must make trade-offs between the cost of diapers and the cost of child care, and used this knowledge to inform their pricing and marketing for low-income segments in the United States. Speed of geographic expansion: Global coordination allows companies to more easily share insights across brands and

Global Management of Brand Portfolios Has Clear Benefits

There have been some fantastic stories of well-managed global brands, both inside and outside the CPG industry. Some are well known: For example, at Apple, a great majority of R&D, innovation, and even marketing is organized centrally; Procter & Gambles strong arsenal of global brands benefits from its use of open innovation, in which a central R&D hub oversees a pipeline of ideas generated both within the company and with external partners. Other examples have received less publicity, such as the use of consumer insight that parlayed the brand equity of Kimberly-Clarks Huggies diapers into other successful products for babies, including Pull-Ups and toiletries. Though CPG companies approaches to managing global brands vary, they generally look to gain three particular

markets, thereby enabling teams to learn from one another about new product ideas and innovative ways to connect with customers. Additionally, global coordination can make for more rapid and cost-efficient expansion into new markets with existing products. This is particularly true in the case of global brands with a unique name and positioning, as well as similar execution across markets, from pricing to packaging to advertising. Look, for example, at the successful rollout of the innovative Air Wick Freshmatic automatic aerosol. Reckitt Benckiser, the brands parent, was able to roll out the product worldwide in less than a year, during which time it found the product in Korea, tested and launched it in Europe, adapted it to meet U.S. environmental regulations, and quickly made it the number two air-care product globally. The products rapid global expansion gave it a clear competitive edge in the newly created air-care segment. Global brand equity: Brands that are proven to have international acceptance and appeal are inherently stronger than national or regional brands. Interbrand, in determining the value of the worlds best brands, uses a brands internationality to determine 25 percent of its brand strength, making that factor as important in Interbrands estimation as leadership (i.e., market share). Greater global reach and recognition make a brand more sustainable and indicate potential for further international expansion. Furthermore, a brands global status can, in itself, be a

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key differentiator to consumers for example, a customer who wants to have global banking services will be attracted to HSBC, which bills itself as the worlds local bank. To fully capture these potential benefits and enhance brand equity, it is critical for CPG companies to coordinate the communication and messaging related to global brands. Leveraging all these benefits, the portfolio of Interbrands Best Global Brands has consistently outperformed the markets by a considerable margin. Where the characteristics of consumer demand and preferences justify it, companies can generate significant value by supporting the development of global brands.

The Challenges of Global Brand Management

Although coordinating brands globally has clear benefits, it often comes with two unintended consequences that have to be carefully addressed: increased organizational complexity and the potential for lack of focus in individual markets. Organizational complexity: Adding global structures to coordinate activities across brands and markets where coordination does not add significant value can actually create unnecessary organizational complexity. Such complexity can result in an inflated organization and shadow staff. It can hamper market responsiveness if coordination processes, decision rights, and information flows

between global and local teams are not defined clearly. Unclear accountability for performance, a natural consequence of poorly defined global structures, can make the situation worse and cause ineffective execution and loss of speed. Even P&Gs global structure, which is well defined, has troubles with accountabilities related to the P&L between the global business units (GBUs) and market development organizations (MDOs): The GBUs own the P&Ls for particular product lines, but the MDOs own the P&Ls for regional execution. If results do not meet expectations, its often unclear where the problem lies. Was the product, owned by the GBU, inadequate for local needs, or was there poor pricing in the market or poor execution in the store? Diminished local focus: Global CPG companies face a major challenge in finding the right balance between global coordination and the local flexibility needed to adapt to market-specific tastes and preferences (e.g., packaging, colors, flavors, and messaging). A global strategy that does not leave sufficient room for local market customization may diminish brands and products local relevance to an extent that surpasses the benefits expected from global coordination. Although certain global brands (such as Coca-Cola and McDonalds) are still largely associated with their home market in the eyes of consumers worldwide, others in a variety of industriesare

attempting to appear more local as a way to be better connected to consumers in each market. LG Electronics, for example, aims to make it completely unimportant to consumers where LG is headquartered.1 Finally, there is also a risk that the companys global core may focus excessively on a companys largest markets and may not give smaller markets the resources they need to grow. Paradoxically, the opposite can also be a riska companys position in its home market may be threatened if its resources are spread too thin by global expansion.

Leading CPG Companies Take Diverse Approaches to Global Brand Management

Faced with these complex tradeoffs between the potential benefits of global brand management and the possibility of greater complexity and lack of flexibility, CPG companies have adopted a wide variety of approaches to global brand management, reflecting the diversity of their situations (see Exhibit 2). A companys organizational focus will be largely determined by the way it structures its brand-management model. Some companies, such as Procter & Gamble and LOral, are primarily organized around powerful centralized category-management teams, which determine priorities for the category as a whole and leverage synergies across markets. Other companies, such as Ferrero and Heinz, have adopted a more decentralized approach, aligned

Yong Nam, CEO of LG Electronics.

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Exhibit 2
Organizational Focus: Choices of Leading CPG Companies

Centralized Category Management Primarily globally managed, with powerful global category management units that leverage brand and customer preference similarities across markets Execution driven by strong local arms

Procter & Gamble LOral Newell Rubbermaid Nestl (waters, nutrition)

Primarily Category Managed

BIC Reckitt Benckiser Kimberly-Clark Sara Lee Heinz Unilever Nestl (food and beverages) Ferrero Decentralized Category Management

ProcessBased Coordination

Managed through matrix of categoryand geography-focused teams Extensive use of coordinating mechanisms (e.g., councils, strong innovation processes)

Primarily Geographically Managed

Primarily managed through strong regional commercial organizations in entrepreneurial culture High focus on geographic P&L accountability for fast local decision making on heterogeneous products and customers across countries

Source: Booz & Company

primarily along geographies, in which the bulk of decisions and activities are managed locally with minimal coordination across markets. In between these two models of P&L accountability, with fully centralized category management at one extreme and geography-centered decentralized management at the other, are numerous other options in the continuum. Similarly, leading CPG companies have made different choices in terms of decision-making

processes. Whereas some companies have favored a model in which the dominant category or brand sets goals and is responsible for their attainment, others have opted for a councilbased model in which interest groups are represented, or for a steward-driven process with a facilitator who coordinates resources across functional groups. Some companies rely heavily on formal structures and processes (e.g., explicit lines of control and measures), and others

primarily leverage incentives or favor more informal structures. These major differences among leading CPG companies suggest that there is no single best model. The optimal level of global category management and, more generally speaking, central coordination of activities is specific to each company.

Identifying the Right Global Management Model

Are there opportunities to leverage scale for certain brand-related

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functions or activities in different markets? Are product and customer insights from one market relevant and meaningful to other markets? Are speed-to-market and the ability to roll out products quickly across markets a key competitive advantage? If a company answers yes to these questions, then it will find significant value in coordinating brands and categories across markets. For these companies, the question is often not Should we set up a global management structure? Rather, they need to ask, Which parts of the value chain and which specific businesses should be managed

globally? To answer this question, they must take into account considerations involving both the global portfolio and individual categories (see Exhibit 3). Global Portfolio ViewAn Overarching Approach: The global brand portfolio is a primary driver of corporate growth and should be a major factor in determining priorities. It is important, then, to have a holistic understanding of how a companys approach to portfolio management can support or undermine its overall strategy.

First, companies must look at the role of growth in new markets: If this is a critical component of the enterprise strategy, then companies should choose an operating model that facilitates focus in these areas. A global operating model will allow for the rapid expansion of existing products, whereas a regional model will enable a highly customized and fast approach in individual growth markets. Second, companies need to look at the capabilities that will be critical to support the global strategy they have selected. For

Exhibit 3
Global Brand Management Strategy: Key Building Blocks

Global Portfolio View How can global brand management support the companys overarching strategy? Corporate growth strategy Role of expansion into new markets Role of new capability building Management of organizational complexity

Global Brand Management Model

Category-Specific Views To what extent can each individual category benefit from global brand management? Category dynamics Does the category show similarities across markets that can be leveraged? Where in the value chain can it most benefit from global coordination? Category strategy What are the strategic priorities for the category? Which level and type of global coordination do they call for?

Which specific businesses should be managed globally? Which parts of the value chain should be managed globally?

Source: Booz & Company

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instance, the development and global rollout of a new product will require, first, coherent innovation capabilities that can create breakthrough products; second, the ability to customize those products by geographic segment; and third, the consumer insight necessary to address diverse customer needs. Category-Specific Views Assessment of Global Brand Management by Category: Once a company understands how its approach to global brand management can support its overall strategy, it can begin to consider the benefits of its approach to individual categories. The type and magnitude of the benefits will vary widely. Opportunities for global coordination at the various steps of the value chain differ from one category to the next, depending on the intrinsic characteristics of each category and strategic priorities: Similarity of consumer demand characteristics across geographies presents the opportunity to coordinate consumer and shopper insights, key messages, and, most important, the innovation engine. For global brands, where a consistent name and positioning are used around the world, aspects of marketing communication can and should be coordinated globally; of course, in some cases, strong local adaptation is criticalfor language, at an absolute minimum. Typically, investments in creative

development, digital media, and multicultural marketing can also be leveraged globally. Companies can use insights from each market in which they operate to understand what might appeal to consumers in comparable markets. One lens through which to see these insights is that of the life cycle of emerging markets: The consumption of staples like wheat reveals how consumers tastes change, following a predictable pattern, as an economy matures (see Exhibit 4, page 8). First, wheat consumption rises (tracked here with the data for China and India), then it falls (China, Turkey, Brazil), and finally, levels off (Poland, Hungary). Companies that take a global view of their customer base can track how demand for their own products might follow similar trajectories.2 Recognizing these similarities can help companies better manage the tremendous demand for resources in innovation and take a long-term approach to leveraging the output. Similarity of product characteristics across geographies, in terms of underlying product formulation, process technology, or broader supply chain approaches, enables companies to leverage scale globally for activities such as product development, technology platforms, procurement, manufacturing, and logisticseven when consumer needs may vary. For example, flatbread may take

the form of naan in India, tortillas in Mexico, and wraps in the United Statesbut these variations use largely the same ingredients, serve similar consumer needs, and even share similar processing approaches. Companies can use their knowledge of needs across the value chaininnovation, supply chain, packaging, partnerships, and shelf assortmentto determine and develop the capabilities that will support a winning strategy. Powerful global retailers that dominate a particular category create a need for global coordination in the areas of supply chain, customer management, in-store marketing, and product development (especially for retailer-specific SKUs). Analysis of the characteristics of a given category along these three dimensions gives an indication of where in the value chain the benefits of global coordination are greatest for a given category (see Exhibit 5, page 9). Analyzing a category along these dimensions also provides guidance as to the best management model. For categories that are composed of highly similar products and that rely heavily on global brands serving similar consumer demand characteristics across geographies, a formal coordination system with powerful global category management is generally most effective. In contrast, categories with a range of highly diverse products marketed mostly through local brands are typically best coordinated

Alonso Martinez and Ronald Haddock, The Flatbread Factor, strategy+business, Spring 2007.

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Exhibit 4
The Wheat Wave: Common Patterns of Consumption
Cumulative Change in Total Wheat Consumption per Capita 19802003










60% $0 $5,000 $10,000 $15,000

Normalized GDP per Capita

China India Turkey Brazil Poland Hungary

Sources: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations FAOSTAT, online database (19612003); International Monetary Fund, World Economic Outlook Database, April 2006; Booz & Company

through lighter and less formal mechanisms. These may include centers of excellence, which are populated with thought leaders who research best practices in a particular area and disseminate them throughout the company, or virtual teams, which are crossfunctional, cross-geographic teams that come together regularly to share information. Although a categorys intrinsic characteristics are a key consideration in developing a global management structure for

that category, companies also need to take into account their strategy in the category: Is the category mostly a commodity play for the company, which would imply that category management should focus on cost efficiency? Or are innovation and speed-tomarket the top strategic priorities? Is global expansion a major growth avenue for the category? The answers to these questions are crucial to determining the best management structure and leadership style for each category

in which the company operates (see Seeking the Best Fit).

Defining the Companys Global Management Model

Because the ideal global management structure may vary from business to business, there is a real risk of developing an overly complex operating model at the corporate level, with a multitude of coexisting management structures tailored to fit the diverse needs of individual categories. The key question here

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Exhibit 5
Opportunities for Global Coordination Across the Value Chain: Key Drivers
Key Drivers Consumer Insights Product Development Activities to Be Coordinated Manufacturing and Procurement Customer Management



Similar Consumer Demand Characteristics

Consumer and shopper insights development

Breakthrough innovation

Brand positioning definition For global brands Messaging Advertising strategy, marketing platform Digital media strategy and platform

Similar Products

Platform/ breakthrough innovation Product development

Processing technology Raw material procurement

Regional supply chain services

Significant Global Customers (Retailers)

Product development for retailer-specific SKUs

In-store marketing

Supply chain services Logistics

Customer relationship management Corporate pricing/contract management Category advisory

Source: Booz & Company

Seeking the Best Fit

One large CPG company had a number of factors to consider in determining the best approach to managing a particular category. It was successful and well established as a player in this category in developed markets, but had virtually no footprint in emerging markets. Customer preferences, occasions of use, and types of products differed significantly from country to countrywhich would suggest at first glance that rollout of existing products to emerging markets had limited potential and that there were few benefits to be gained from global category management. However, the company saw significant potential for growth in emerging markets. Accordingly, it opted for a strategy that made the most of its strong innovation capabilities and was able to introduce a game-changing product that would appeal to consumers across markets. Even though the definition of the category itself was initially different between markets, the company chose to drive innovation centrally for the category. In doing so, it developed a product that changed consumer habits and preferenceswhich enabled the company to create a profitable category in emerging markets where it had not previously existed.

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is the degree of coherence in the portfolio: Do the categories and brands in the portfolio have any significant similaritiesfor instance, in consumer demand, technology platforms, or distribution networks? How much know-how can be shared across the portfolio? What are the expectations about the different businesses, in terms of growth and profitability around the globe? The answers to these questions will identify opportunities to cluster categories together and manage them accordingly. Bringing together the portfoliolevel and category-level assessment of global management allows a company to strike a balance between meeting the unique needs of individual brands and leveraging major synergies across brands and categories. The optimal operating model has to be based on a balanced consideration of both category requirements and corporate priorities, with the objective of avoiding unnecessary organizational complexity. When the analysis of individual categories suggests the development of a variety of global management models, the best way to reduce complexity is to limit the number of models coexisting within a given company and to keep them separate. For example, Nestl has opted for a hybrid organizational structure with two major global management models (see Exhibit 6). In the first, selected categories are managed globally. For instance, the companys waters business, which has products and consumer preferences that

are highly similar from market to market, benefits from a global management model that allows it to capture synergies across markets. In addition, the separate global management model gives this high-growth business the management visibility and focus it requires to thrive. In the second model, the traditional food and beverage categories, which typically show much greater diversity across markets, are managed by geography. This hybrid organization recognizes the diverse needs of individual categories while limiting organizational complexity. Such balance is not easy to achieve but is critical to the successful management of a global portfolio.

brands into new markets to leverage the important benefits that global brand management offers and mere global category management does notsuch as coordinated marketing and digital media platform sharing. Focus on the areas of the value chain in which global brand management shows the highest potential for the company, given the specifics of its portfolio and its strategic agenda. Rather than issuing a universal decree for global brand management, understand how it benefits the company in each area of the value chain. Assess the opportunity to establish a global categorymanagement structure category by category, based on the degree of similarity of consumers and products and the importance of global brands for a given category; there is no single best model to be universally applied across categories. Beyond structural lines and boxes, identify opportunities to coordinate activities by facilitating communication across brands and markets along the entire value chain to leverage cross-category synergies. Keep the organizational structure as simple as possible. In some cases, it may be better to give up scale for the sake of organizational simplicity and quick decision making. Define P&L accountability in close alignment with strategic objectives, clearly

Best Practices for Successful Global Brand Coordination

Through years of research and in our work with CPG companies, we have identified a series of operating principles that companies typically employ to capture the full benefits of global brand coordination and management. Where the characteristics of consumer demand and preferences justify it, support the development of truly global brands, as they can be the greatest source of longterm value creation for a CPG company. Take a broad perspective regarding new innovation that may shape global demand without losing perspective on the underlying consumer dynamics in a region. Actively look for opportunities to expand strong existing


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Exhibit 6
Nestls Hybrid Category Management Model

CEO Nestl

Food and Beverages

Other Categories Nestl Waters

Central Functions

Strategic Business Units, Marketing and Sales Dairy SBU Coffee and Beverages SBU Chocolate, Confectionary, and Biscuits SBU Ice Cream SBU Food SBU PetCare SBU Nespresso Nescaf

Consumer insights Business strategy development Innovation management Brand equity management

Innovation, Technology, R&D

Nestl Nutrition Finance and Control Nestl Professional*

Zone Europe

Zone Americas

Zone Asia, Oceania, Africa, Middle East

Pharma and Cosmetics


Managed through Three Geographic Zones Global Category Management through SBUs

Managed Globally

* Previously FoodServices; provides solutions to food and beverage professionals Source: Booz & Company

delineating the decision rights of the various global and local teams to maintain speed in decision making. Define who is responsible for the results of each business, and be careful to ensure that the ownership does not get fragmented among various entities. Establish streamlined processes for coordination between global and local teams.

Align the incentive structure for all teams involved with the chosen P&L accountability model to encourage the behaviors that will strike an optimal balance between global coordination and local flexibility. For example, in a centralized structure, employees should be encouraged to pay special attention to the needs of local markets; in a decentralized structure, employees should be rewarded

for efforts to share information with peers in other units. If a companys portfolio includes a diverse set of businesses, all of which may require different models, it should consider clustering them by their status as global, regional, or multiregional brands. Doing so will greatly simplify information flows to and from the local markets.

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The challenges associated with the coordination of everincreasing numbers of products and markets are real, but the potential benefits of global brands

and global category management are considerable. There is no question that the majority of overall growth in the CPG sector will come from international

marketsand those that get the formula right in terms of managing that growth will see disproportionate success.


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