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Francesco De Rosa, with vast experience from the international pharma industry at various prominent positions within sales, brand and business managing, gives the background to one of his first experiences with Opticom International Research: “At the time, I had taken over a very important Pfizer brand with a five-year legacy of declining market shares and I needed to get a 360 degree understanding of the decision-making process within the growth hormone therapy area” he explains and continues: “My scope was clear: bend the trend!”.

To gain this crucial understanding, Francesco turned to Opticom, a company which had previously delivered very good and useful results in projects for another pharmaceutical brand he had worked with. In the project of close co-operation that followed, Opticom conducted about 100 qualitative interviews with parents, paediatricians, and nurses to understand their different needs and reasoning within this therapy area.

The research discovered many “leaks” that delayed children’s access to treatment as well as large regional differences. Based on Opticom’s comprehensive analysis of the patient journey and treatment rationales, Francesco was able to change his company’s strategy, including a relocation of resources, better aligned to the customer landscape, as well as to improve communication around the value of treatment. In addition, the team could optimize its different support tools to physicians, nurses and parents, in order to facilitate earlier diagnose and better compliance.

Furthermore, Francesco and his colleagues came up with an improved treatment device to deal with an issue rated very important among respondents in the survey: Ease-of-use.

He describes the direct impact of this new, very valuable market knowledge: “Thanks to the new insights we designed a new device for the treatment of growth hormones deficiencies among children in order to meet the single most important factor in the choice of treatment: Easy-of-use of the device. This resulted in a patent available in more than 100 countries worldwide”.

As a result of the new strategy, the brand soon turned decline into growth and has been continuing this positive development ever since.

According to Francesco, the generation of updated customer insights is key to their business. Understanding both traditional and non-traditional stakeholders, their needs, as well as the patient journey and the decision-making process is fundamental in forming a successful business strategy.

In these situations you need a consulting company with a strong focus on quality, and with a thorough process for both research as well as analysis that delivers real and actionable results. That is where Opticom comes in as a very valuable partner with the staff’s vast knowledge and experience of the pharma industry:  “They are methodical in their understanding of customer needs and in making sure that the setup of the project, from the very start to result implementation, is consistent and with a great focus on details and delivery” says Francesco, who would definitely engage Opticom again to gain strategic insights and/or to facilitate optimized communication.

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There are many people who have been part of Opticom’s history and have been valuable in contributing to our success. Our roots stem from research and analysis, which has provided our clients with true customer knowledge. This knowledge has served as the foundation for decisions that aim at creating bottom line value for our customers across the industry. Numerous client testimonials has shown that research pays off. Over the years, we have added consulting to our offering, helping our clients to reach insights that allow even better decision making. These are the two disciplines that we have built our success upon, and it has allowed us to work with an incredible list of globally leading companies. It has been our privilege to serve all these companies on a long-term basis.

We added communication as the third leg in our business in 2014, and thus today the Opticom Group offers global research, consulting and communication to all of our clients.

Our mission is to help our customers create value by transforming data and knowledge into strategic advice and efficient communication. We are a truly global company, covering over 30 nationalities active on 6 continents in more than 100 countries. Since our foundation in 1987 we have undertaken hundreds of international assignments across the world.

We thank all our clients for trusting Opticom with your important projects, and we also thank all of our co-workers and business partners for their hard work and commitment to Opticom.

Finally, we are very much looking forward to the next 30 years and beyond. We can also assure you that we will continue to be passionate about understanding your key challenges and in finding solutions that deliver true value and ROI.

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Stockholm, Sweden, November 3rd, 2016 – Opticom International Research now presents the results of the 12th edition of the “Brand Equity Tracking Survey – Office Paper”. This industry standard benchmark survey for office paper brands has been conducted among
1500 professional end-users across 5 countries in Europe. The countries covered are Germany, France, the United Kingdom, Italy and Spain.

The top European office paper brands according to the Opticom Brand Equity Index are:

Ranking 2016 (2013*) Brand Owner of the brand
1 (2) Navigator The Navigator Company
2 (1) Xerox Antalis
3 (4) Lyreco Lyreco
4 (3) HP HP (manufactured and distributed exclusively by International Paper)
5 (7) Staples Staples

* Compared with the ranking for the five same countries in 2013.

Among the brands qualifying this year, Navigator, Xerox and HP have been evaluated by more respondents in 2016 than in 2013 and only Lyreco has qualified in all markets in 2016. When comparing the ranking for the five countries sampled in 2016 versus 2013, two brands are no longer qualifying: Discovery and Office Depot.

Navigator has doubled its Spontaneous Awareness Index since 2013, while showing steady levels in the other indices (Quality & Association index as well as Loyalty index) reaching the first position in all criteria and taking the overall leadership. Xerox, 2013’s leading brand, dropped to second place due to a lower score in the Spontaneous Awareness Index.

Lyreco and HP swapped places mainly due to higher Quality & Association and Loyalty indices for Lyreco. Staples qualified again but shows a strong decrease in its Top-of-Mind index and a loss of few points in all the other indices although the brand did improve its recommendation index.

When looking at the ranking in each individual country, we can see that more brands are qualifying on an individual country level such as Canon and Viking in the United Kingdom, Office Depot in France or Plano in Germany.

While most of the rebranded reseller brands have maintained their position or dropped in the ranking, it is still clear that the majority of the brands in this top list are corporate brands. Only one pure product brand has qualified on the overall European level: The Navigator Company’s Navigator.

“Beside ranking the most valuable brands of Office Paper in Europe, we explore where and how the brands are bought, how the brands and suppliers are selected but also the environmental issues around the office paper brands, giving a deeper dimension to the information provided in this research” comments Cécilia Vassal Nyholm, Project Manager. “And knowing how actively our clients are using the results in their communication with their customers is very rewarding to us.”

About Opticom’s Brand Equity Index and the Office Paper Tracking Survey

Opticom’s Brand Equity Index model assesses the impact of individual office paper brands, benchmarks the leading brands against each other and evaluates the success of individual brand strategies over time through four indexed key drivers of brand equity: spontaneous awareness, top-of-mind, qualities & associations and loyalty.

In order to improve the brand equity of their brands, brand owners should analyse the individual results for the different sub-indexes – both in comparison to the last survey as well as in relation to other brands – and determine where improvements can and need to be made. Is the channel strategy appropriate? Do the brands get enough support in their marketing efforts? Do the office paper buyers understand that the things our brands are good at are important? Is the perception of the brand’s performance fair? Why have other brands with a similar positioning as ours been able to achieve more than our brand?

You can learn more by ordering the “Brand Equity Tracking Survey – Office Paper 2016”. The survey is based on 1500 interviews with professional end-users of office paper (in SOHO, SMEs and corporations) in 5 European countries (Germany, France, the United Kingdom, Italy and Spain). The survey has an overall purpose to identify and track: Brand Awareness, Brand Performance, Brand Loyalty and Brand Equity measured through Opticom’s Brand Equity Index (BEI).

In addition to issues directly related to brand equity, the 2016 edition of the survey also studies buying behaviour by looking at buying determinants and drivers for brand choice, relevant communication and purchasing channels, as well as how professional purchasers of office paper view environmental friendliness and which brands that are leading in that respect.

By looking into who the main suppliers are of the main brands bought, the study also for the first time ever clearly maps the channels through which brands are bought as well as which are the main brands sold by the leading suppliers.

For more information, or ordering of the study, please contact Cecilia Vassal Nyholm at:

Phone: +46 (0)8 50 30 90 04 • Mobile: +46 (0)708 39 90 04 • E-mail: cecilia@opticom.se

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Opticom International Research now presents the results of the 7th edition of the “Brand Equity Tracking Survey – Cartonboard”. This industry standard benchmark survey for cartonboard brands has been conducted among 225 converters across 8 countries in Europe. The countries covered are Germany, France, the United Kingdom, Italy, Spain, the Netherlands, Belgium and Switzerland.

The top European cartonboard brands according to the Opticom Brand Equity Index are:

Ranking 2016 (2014/2012*) Brand Owner of the brand
1 (1/1) Invercote Iggesund
2 (4/5) Performa Stora Enso
3 (2/3) Incada Iggesund
4 (8/6) Simcote Metsä Board
5 (5/8) Ensocoat Stora Enso
6 (6/4) Carta range Metsä Board
7 (3/2) Tambrite Stora Enso
8 (-/5) Alaska Plus International Paper
9 (-/11) BillerudKorsnäs BillerudKorsnäs
10 (7/9) Rochcoat/blanc/perle Careo
11 (-/7) Algro Design Sappi
12 (new) Pankawhite/-brite Pankaboard
13 (9/-) Excellent Top MM Karton
14 (10/10) Linoplex/-freeze MM Karton

* BEI 2012 based on recalculation including the 2012 data from Switzerland for comparison.

Both Iggesund and Stora Enso continue to maintain their positions as owners of the most valuable brands since 2012. However, the competition is closing in with Simcote showing a higher level of loyalty than the leading brands.

In comparison with previous years, Pankawhite/-brite (from Pankaboard) has qualified for ranking for the first time; and 3 brands are back in the ranking: Alaska Plus (International Paper), BillerudKorsnäs (BillerudKorsnäs) and Algro Design (from Sappi).

Main findings

The survey shows that the levels of awareness of the top brands have increased since 2014, especially for Performa, Carta range and Excellent Top. Moreover, we can once again see a clear correlation between spontaneous awareness and purchased brands.

Value for money and Consistent Quality remain the two leading aspects in terms of brand evaluation. In general, brands are meeting the same level of expectation as in 2014, with the exception of Value for Money where converters are slightly more cost sensitive and less satisfied with the brands’ performance.

On the service side, Supply Reliability remains the most important aspect for converters who are not yet satisfied with the brands’ related performance. Comparison over time shows that business relationship has gained in importance and the brands are worse at meeting expectations.

The converters are still very loyal to their current main brand: both likely to continue purchasing the brand but also in recommending it to others.

Besides ranking the most valuable brands, the survey allowed us to look into what drives the choice and the purchasing of a specific brand but also to get insight into topics such as sustainability. Converters also shared interesting ideas on how to gain value from technical services and how producers could help them meet their most critical challenges.

About Opticom’s Brand Equity Index and the Cartonboard Tracking Survey

Opticom’s Brand Equity Index model assesses the impact of individual cartonboard brands, benchmarks the leading brands against each other and evaluates the success of individual brand strategies over time through four indexed key drivers of brand equity: spontaneous awareness, top-of-mind, qualities & associations and loyalty.

In order to improve the brand equity of their brands, brand owners should analyse the individual results for the different sub-indexes – both in comparison to the last survey as well as in relation to other brands – and determine where improvements can and need to be made. Do the brands get enough support in their marketing efforts? Do the cartonboard buyers understand that the things our brands are good at are important? Is the perception of the brand’s performance fair? Why have other brands with a similar positioning as ours been able to achieve more than our brand?

You can learn more by ordering the “Brand Equity Tracking Survey – Cartonboard 2016: Converters”. The survey is based on 225 interviews with converters of cartonboard in 8 European countries (Germany, France, the United Kingdom, Italy, Spain, the Netherlands, Belgium and Switzerland). The survey has an overall purpose to identify and track: Brand Awareness, Brand Performance, Brand Loyalty and Brand Equity measured through Opticom’s Brand Equity Index (BEI). A second survey is available: “Brand Equity Tracking Survey – Cartonboard 2016: Brand Owners” based on 351 interviews done in the same 8 countries with Brand Owners active in six segments: Cosmetics & beauty care, Pharmaceuticals & healthcare, Chocolate & confectionery, Frozen & chilled food, Dry food, Wines & spirits.

In addition to issues directly related to brand equity, the 2016 edition of the survey also studies buying behaviour by looking at buying determinants and drivers for brand choice, sustainability issues, as well as how producers of cartonboard can help the converters and brand owners to meet their critical challenges.

For more information, or ordering of the survey, please contact Cécilia Vassal Nyholm at: Phone: +46 (0)8 50 30 90 04 • Mobile: +46 (0)708 39 90 04 • E-mail: cecilia@opticom.se

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Imagine a country where forestry generates 10% of the industrial production.

With any likelihood this country cared for all of their trees for more than a century, to ensure that this valuable resource remained just that. Re-planting more than what was harvested became not only legislative, but also a modus operandi. A way-of-life that produced such desirable goods as baby diapers, toilet tissue, carton board, liquid packing, wooden floors, posh furniture, surgical cloth, and even smart clothes. The net export value of this was not bad at all.

Over time, it is not unlikely that the awareness rose that this vast resource (more than 55% of the land) also spun off other benefits of a greater good. Like helping the Earth to breathe. Balancing out CO emissions. And helping to stop climate change.

Many of the inhabitants of this country used this production resource as their own recreational arena; skiing, hiking, fishing, biking, scouting, picking mushrooms, harvesting berries, hunting game, birdwatching and much more.

However, another fraction of the inhabitants saw the contrary. They only envisioned large corporations intruding in nature, threatening life-on-earth. And claimed that this industry in fact endangered species and worsened climate change.

To the amazement of many, the latter group got the upper hand. And started to limit the use of the forests. More and more land was set aside as national trusts, deemed to perpetual unproductiveness. Facing rapid decay, these vast forest areas would neither contribute to grow GDP nor lower CO. And definitely not help push the boundaries of new, smart materials technology.

What to do? Who is right? What is wrong? How to turn things right?

We don’t know yet. But we can find out.

Because the only thing we do is to help companies around the world create value by transforming data and knowledge into strategic advice and efficient communication.

Visit www.opticomgroup.se for more information.

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