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Selected Case

published: 30 Jan 2017

Abstract:
Paris-based S.T.Dupont is engaged in the manufacture, marketing and sale of luxury goods for men and women, including lighters, pens, jewelry, leather goods, eyewear, watches, belts, fragrances and casual and formal attire. Founded in 1872 by an entrepreneurial French photographer and carriage-maker, the company began making luxury leather luggage for wealthy aristocrats. It was owned and managed by the same family until the 1970s, when it was sold to the American multinational Gillette. A decade later, it was sold to Hong Kong conglomerate Dickson Concepts. Having largely lost its brand identity, S.T.Dupont languished until 2006, when a new management team based in Paris successfully turned the company around with a unique branding and marketing strategy.

Pedagogical Objectives:
The case teaches the critical role of brand management in the context of S.T.Dupont, a French luxury brand that was successfully revived by CEO Alain Crevet and his team. Faced with a daunting task on his arrival in 2006 – the company was hemorrhaging money, customers had lost sight of the brand personality, and its craftsmen were no longer producing innovative products – the case outlines Crevet’s journey to resurrect the firm from near bankruptcy. Students are invited to take a holistic view of branding: how a brand can be consistent during a turnaround, why it is essential to identify the key brand pillars across all channels, how to tap into a brand’s heritage and identity. The case offers experiential learning – from the mistakes of the past – as well as branding solutions for the future. Designed for marketing students, it can also be used in luxury management, strategy management and organizational behavior courses.

Keywords:
S.t. Dupont, Handbags, Pens, Cigar Accessories, Brand Equity, Brand Positioning, Brand Strategy, Lighters, Jewellery, Tissot-Dupont, Cricket, Alain Crevet, Brand Identity, Luxury Goods


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