"We don't make a lot of the products you buy. We make a lot of the products you buy better.®"
An Exemplar Marketing Company
BASF the chemical company is a provider of chemicals that has operations on five continents selling intermediates to various different industries. Founded in Manheim Germany in 1865 BASF has continually been on the move growing its presence globally. Aggressive expansion in the 1960’s led to this global presence with continued growth into the Asian markets planned in the early 2000’s. In order to be known as “The” global chemical supplier BASF redefined its image by officially changing its name from “BASF” to “BASF the chemical company” in 2004. This bold statement is expressed in their brand, corporate identity and company logo. BASF has lived up to this goal establishing itself as the largest chemical company in the world.(1) BASF, which stands for Badische Anilin- und Soda-Fabrik (Baden Aniline and Soda Factory), has used its image marketing to evoke the concept that "We don't make a lot of the products you buy. We make a lot of the products you buy better.®". BASF posted sales of 52.6 billion euro in 2006 (1) placing itself above Dow Chemical, its closest competition, followed by companies Bayer AG and DuPont. BASF the chemical company markets a strategy in all its divisions called the “Verbund” concept, a German word meaning “linked”. This concept of total integration is how BASF aligns its businesses internally as well as with customers and suppliers. BASF has realized a competitive advantage by not only integrating but interlocking value chains. In the last three years practicing on the Verbund concept acquisitions like Engelhard Corporation, Degussa AG and Johnson Polymers have allowed BASF to further its vertical integration of its businesses. In 2007 BASF found its place at a rank of 81 on the Fortune Global 500 Companies list, up from 94 in 2006. In February of 2006 Fortune magazine performed a survey of U.S business professionals and BASF earned the distinction of being one of the 50 most admired companies in the world in a global comparison. Introduction
When you say “BASF the chemical company” many people may not know the name but those who do can usually recite the slogan: "We don't make a lot of the products you buy. We make a lot of the products you buy better.®". Even those that can recite the slogan can be quite challenged to give one example of a product that BASF makes. Given this you would be amazed at some of the everyday products that use BASF chemicals. The additive that thickens your shampoo, the Ibuprofen used in your pain medication, the Legos ® your kids play with all have components supplied by BASF. The only reason an average person would hear of BASF is through their corporate level image advertising. How is it that a company whose products are never seen by the average consumer ends up as the worlds largest in its industry? How it is a company that many have not heard of could make acquisitions in the 1.6 billion dollar range? How is it a company can post sales in the 52.6 billion euro range and the average consumer does not know who they are yet there products are everywhere?
The first team discussions on what company to do the report on a team member brought some information to the table. This information is that he works for the world’s largest chemical company and no one knew what the company truly makes provoking the questions from above. The challenge is to understand how a company markets itself to a global position without the normal consumers influence. Our team chose this company to look at a business that would perform its marketing in a different environment than the main stream consumer environment and to better understand how a company markets without being seen. This is a report on business to business marketing observations of BASF the chemical...
References: 6) Personal communication October 9 2007 Danielle Robinson, Marketing Research Analyst for BASF Coatings Division, N-ECN/IS Sales and Marketing, 26701 Telegraph Road Southfield MI 48033 USA
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