THE DANNON COMPANY CASE STUDY ANALYSISThe Dannon Company Case Study Analysis OL 690: Responsible Corporate Leadership The Dannon Company Case Study Analysis1
THE DANNON COMPANY CASE STUDY ANALYSISIntroductionIn 1919 Isaac Carasso decided to introduce a healthy snack that boasted numerous health benefits that was known as yogurt. Carasso brought this treat to Barcelona by opening a shop called Danone – meaning little Daniel, named after his son. When Carasso immigrated into the United States in 1942, he established Dannon Milk Products, Inc. in New York, and changed the name to Dannon in an effort to Americanize the name. After facing decades of challenges in the food industry, Dannon capitalized on the advantages of having an FDA approval in 1988, which led to their first successful product launch.However, in 2009 Dannon realized that their current rank as the second largest yogurt providers was diminishing and losing valuable market share to their number one competitor Yoplait. The reasoning for this was because Yoplait had a loyal brand following, especially with corporate social responsibility campaigns such as their “Save Lids for Lives” breast cancer campaign. This type of CSR nutrition-based activities gives Yoplait a market advantage greater then Dannon’s at a total of 35.4% market share. In an effort to challenge the CSR advantage that Yoplait currently had in the yogurt market, Dannon needed to develop an effective CSR plan that would allow them to compete withYoplait’s already successful CSR strategies. Dannon’s communication on the health benefits of their yogurt was divulged internally, they just lacked the external communication to current and potential customers. Dannon can generate new sale opportunities, eliminate Yoplait’s competitive advantage, and increase revenue if their CSR strategy is externally communicated to show the time and money the company has dedicated to the research on the health benefits of their product. Open Communication Debate2
THE DANNON COMPANY CASE STUDY ANALYSISWith the constant competition from Yoplait and other yogurt companies, The Dannon Company’s senior director of public relations Michael Neuwirth asked the important questions that were relevant for Dannon. Dannon has been successful at becoming one of the largest health-focused food companies in the world, yet they were at a crossroads in their existence. In order for The Dannon Company to continue to strive, Neuwirth along with other executives needed to determine how to proactively communicate to consumers its CSR initiatives. Dannon [followed] in the footsteps of its corporate parent Danone – by maintaining a strong commitment to CSR; and integrating it into the company’s overall mission of “bringing health through food to as many people as possible” [Mar10]. Dannon’s view on social responsibility includes three main areas of focus: nutrition and health, people and nature.
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