Corporate Reputation

Topics: Sustainability, Strategic management, ITC Limited Pages: 7 (2009 words) Published: August 22, 2013
ITC’s Dairy Development Initiative
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Instructor: Prof. Asha Kaul Academic Associate: Sudhir Pandey

In partial fulfillment of the requirements of the course

Communicating Corporate Reputation

By Jyotirmoy Pathak PGP – 12126 Section – A On 20th August 2013

INDIAN INSTITUTE OF MANAGEMENT, AHMEDABAD

ITC Limited: A Prologue
The journey that began way back in 1910 was very straight and simple for ITC Limited with only tobacco and tobacco products in their portfolio. It was in 1970 that then chairman of ITC Shri Ajit Narain Haskar decided to diversify the business to Hotel Business. Soon enough, ITC ventured into paperboards industry as well and by the end of the twentieth century, ITC increased their portfolio by manifold by investing into agri-business, FMCG products, packaging and information system etc. Almost two decades thereafter, the investments have started paying their returns and presently, the conglomerate is a USD 42 billion entity with businesses diversified to as many as 35 different divisions. Success of ITC was linked to the innovative business models to deliver shared value for both societies and shareholders, by leveraging synergies across businesses to create new differentiated products and superior value propositions. This was also the period when ITC thought of working towards building an ecosystem rather than trying to protecting it. In true sense, it differentiated itself from the rest of world in such a manner that the competitors were left behind by at least two generations. Sole purpose of ITC was to serve as a market anchor to the entire value chains. As Shri Y. C. Deveshwar, present chairman of ITC Ltd said, “A country's brands are a reflection of its competitive strengths and a manifestation of its innovation and intellectual capacity. I strongly believe that a country's economic capacity is significantly enriched when its institutions build and own internationally competitive brands. Winning brands serve as market anchors to support the competitiveness of the entire value chains of which they are a part. Strong domestic brands create much larger value since they create, capture and retain value within the country. Your Company (ITC) takes justifiable pride in creating world-class Indian brands that have demonstrated immense vitality in the global Indian market place.” Several initiatives which were way different from the conventional marketing mantra were introduced by ITC and it created a value chain that connected a wide range of stakeholders from the villagers, peasants to the end users. E- Choupal, social and farm forestry, watershed development program etc are a few example of those initiatives. These laid platforms that connected the rural India to the rest of the world; creating a two way transaction flow. Also it focused on delivering triple bottom line.

Flipping through the past:
As mentioned, ITC has faced many ups and downs since its inception and the experience it carried forward throughout its journey helped the organization work on many initiatives which were way unconventional. It pioneered the idea of “catalyzing and channelizing investments towards upgrading of human capital expansion and modernization of infrastructure and productivity enhancement in the agri-sector.” The rationale of the idea was to create a shared value in terms of “a commitment beyond the market”. For Ashesh Ambasta, vice president and head of Social investment, business could and should never overlook the twin problems of India, “economic inequity and depleting natural resources”. ITC being traditionally a agriculture based company, couldn’t ignore both these factors invested everything considering these two factors in mind.

Creating a societal as well as shareholder value:
The key to achieve and sustain economic growth of modern India, as identified by ITC, was simply “by enhancing the competitiveness of the Indian farmer and effectively linking them to...
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