This year, 21 teams will be recognized for their contributions to sustainable growth during DMER ceremonies on September 19 in Wilmington, Delaware. This is one in a series of Network News reports on their achievements.
The DuPont China Cereals Market segment team faced three challenges: competition from illegal generics of its Express® tribenuron-methyl (TBE) cereal herbicide, counterfeits and the expiration of the Express® patent in May 2001. The solution was to reorganize the distribution channel to secure support and to differentiate Express® from its competition based on its reliability, safety for cereals and the following crop, and authenticity all attributes that are highly valued by farmers whose livelihood depends on a successful growing season.
Distributors became the key to growing market share and fending off counterfeits. By reducing the number of distributors by 60 percent prior to the patent expiration, the team established a prestigious and vested retailer network. Concerned with both profitability and credibility, retailers received incentives and pull-through traffic for Express® through TV advertising. They were also encouraged to report illegal activity through a brand protection program, thereby preserving the brand's authenticity and their credibility among farmers.
This team achieved exceptional growth of 87 percent in revenue, 69 percent in volume and 19 to 32 percent in market share in a flat to declining market between the 1999/00 and 2001/02 growing seasons. Since the initiation of the brand protection program in 1998, the team has confiscated fakes equal to 3.6 millikilograms of Express®, closed 29 production sites and brought four entities to criminal justice.