Summer 2010

TenCate: a strong brand

TenCate is one of the 50 listed Dutch companies with the most valuable brands. TenCate’s brand policy is linked to the product differentiation cornerstone in the business model. The role of the corporate brand will be further strengthened, by means of among other things end-user marketing

The value of the TenCate corporate brand or brand name is estimated to be €83 million, the total value of the portfolio of TenCate brands, €100 million. The list was compiled in October 2009 by Brand Finance, a specialist in the valuation of company brands.

A strong brand name works: it helps a company to distinguish itself in the market and to communicate why precisely its products and services meet the needs of the customer. The high regard that stakeholders have for a particular brand (knowledge and attitude) and their positive behaviour in purchasing that product or recommending that brand are what determine brand performance: how the company presents itself compared with the competition.

Customer list
A strong brand name can lead to a trend in sales and cost savings, provided these are also used in marketing the products. It has an effect primarily on the trend in sales: customers are perhaps ready to order larger quantities and do so more frequently if they know who the manufacturer of the product is. In addition, there are cost savings; you can probably agree on more favourable financing with investors who have a high regard for the corporate brand (its good reputation). Suppliers are disposed to provide more attractive purchasing conditions. ‘They are eager to add you to their customer list’, states senior consultant Ferdy de Smeth, who conducted the study on behalf of Brand Finance. ‘They do that through “tombstone advertising” - placing your company name or logo in their adverts.’

Sponsoring, such as Heracles Almelo, contributes to a brand. 'People can identify with this’.

Brand valuation
As managing partner, Ferdy de Smeth was invcolved with Brand Finance , an international and independent firm of consultants in brand valuation). In this way you can improve brand strategy and thus the company’s financial performanced, enabling the value of the brand to increase. Brand Finance has developed a method of valuation which is ISO-standardized and is endorsed by major accounting firms. The study includes the value of both the corporate brand and the product brands, thus providing an understanding of the effect of brand architecture on the value of your product and corporate brands. The study was carried out among a group of young professionals – existing and potential customers, employees and suppliers – and a group of existing and potential investors.

A strong brand  helps in the recruitment of employees. After all, who doesn’t want to work for a company that has a good name?

Brand architecture
TenCate pursues an industrial brand policy based on coordinating brand architecture. The brand policy is related to the product differentiation cornerstone in our business model. The product logos consist of the TenCate corporate brand together with the product brand of the market group concerned and the corporate creed: Materials that make a difference. Each market group works as far as possible with families of brands. The role of the corporate brand will be further strengthened in the years ahead, thus promoting TenCate’s identity, transparency and reputation.

The corporate labels TenCate Materialized (at product level) and Powered by TenCate (at company level) ensure that TenCate materials and solutions become more visible to end-users.

Recommendations
One of the recommendations that Ferdy de Smeth makes is: promote the TenCate name more actively. ‘You should promote yourselves more as the TenCate company, including the corporate style, and should invest more in your brand. This will also enable you to sell more.’ These are not sales costs, he emphasizes: ‘branding means investing. We shall also have to highlight our profile better to our suppliers. The same applies to the end-user marketing cornerstone: the existing and potential end-user of our materials. Use ‘TenCate inside’ for example more in ingredient marketing.

So there is quite a challenge for corporate communications – both externally and internally. ‘Internal branding also plays an important role. More internal communications enable you to intensify involvement and strengthen team spirit. You can be strong without necessarily having to be big.’

Blue fabric (Tecawork Blue 65287)