in the first year ($100 million in the U.S. and $200 million elsewhere), so the up-front costs broke the billion dollar barrier. The rollout began in the United States, Canada, and Israel in July 1998, then Western Europe and part of Eastern Europe in September. The plan was to have the Mach3 available in about 100 countries by the end of 1999. By comparison, the Sensor (largely regarded as a global marketing success) needed five years to reach that level of distribution. To accommodate the rollout, production ramp-up was targeted to 1.2 billion cartridges per year by the end of 1998. The price point was set high (about 35 percent above the SensorExcelâ€™s price of $1 per blade); sticker shock was reduced by putting less blades in each pack. At the time, at least one industry expert, Pankaj Ghemawat of Harvard, was saying that even SensorExcelâ€™s price was â€œoutrageous,â€ ± though Zeien and other top Gillette executives believed that the Mach3 was so good, it would sell itself. Based on what you see in this case, what strategic role did design play at Gillette? What are the risks involved in the decision to go with the really new Mach3 design, versus making incremental design improvements to the older SensorExcel technology? Play the
role of both Mr. Zeien and Mr. Cowhig. And what about that aggressive marketing and rollout plan? Would you recommend they take it slower? What are the pros and cons? Answer : Gillette Company has followed a simple strategy for success, replace excellent blade technology with an even better one. Over the years, the company has introduced several different blades. In April 1998, the company launched the Mach3 â€“ A three-bladed razor. Gillette implemented several design practices order to succeed with product design for Mach3. The three-blade design marketed by Gillette allows for a shave with less pressure to the skin and with fewer strokes, thereby reducing skin irritation. Design excellence help firms to achieve a broad range of new product goals such as design for speed to market, design for ease of manufacture, design for differentiation, design to meet customer needs. Gillette used design for differentiation. Gillette designed the product in such a way that it differentiated
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- Spring '17
- John DOe
- Marketing, 1998, Gillette Company