Green Rubber

Green Rubber

  • Green Rubber

  • Executive Sumary

  • The case is about Petro group’s revival plans of an old concept called Green rubber which died down in 90s because the customers found this whole concept to be advanced at that point in time. In the current scenario when most of the companies are trying to cope up with green initiatives and given the fact that the supply shortage of rubber is on cards. It becomes important to come up with a concept that would be more cost effective and which involves Zero wastage. Case analyses how various segments of customers have been targeted and whether customers have accepted 5the arrival of this new concept

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  • Introduction

  • It is global concern these days to protect the environment that we are lkiving in and many companies have commercialised this concept of environmental protection. This has resulted in many companies actually going on a commercial overdrive and charging a premium for the products that were projected as eco friendly.  Petra group was a Malaysia conglomarate who were into many businesses and they have envisioned having a global brand by the name of Green Rubber which they expected to take off in the initial years of the business itself. They have failed to create any interest in the buyers and the fellow industry mates to generate any sort of interest in the same so that the project was not all that successful in its initial years. Later they have tried to revive the brand in the new decade; this was done keeping in mind the increasing demand for rubber in the developing nations and at the same shortage of supply of rubber. They had an idea of taking the whole world market by storm by this new concept of Green Rubber as it was expected to create huge interest in the minds of the customers. This becomes all the more relevant in case of an industry like that of rubber where recycling is a difficult task altogether.

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  • The company mainly target rubber manufacturers who had lesser stringent rules and regulation that gave them access to the market as soon as possible. This included general rubber industry and retread industry (Joachimsthaler, E 2000). The company was already facing many problems in terms of the acceptability of the productivity and at the same time most of the major retraders in the industry were conducting due diligence tests to find out the advantages of using a GRG over a virgin rubber. The promoter tried to position the whole brand as an all in one solution for the rubber retrading industry. They were of the opinion that the other processes are often limited in its scope of usage and at the same time they are not cost effective. They tried to project this new product as effective and having a wide range of uses.

  • The value propositions that were offered to the customers were that they could use a superior product that was environmentally friendly. This means that from the retraders point of view they could look at considerable amount of cost savings by means of effective use of the valuable resources and at the same time of resue of the waste (Weathers ton, J. 1997). The whole concept was made attractive by means of attractive proposition of licensing the product. In addition to the users were given an option to vary the specification by adding the virgin rubber to GRG and thus changing the specifications as required. This also gave the users the flexibility and at the same time support from the GRG team offering them with customised solutions based on the requirements that they have.

  • The main target group for the company was rubber product manufacturers. They did not have a clear segmentation in terms of the products that were offered. But they have basically segmented the market based on the evaluation time that these companies took. This was important because of the fact that in many cases it has been found that these companies took lot of time in evaluating the new product whether they could fit into their scheme of things. Automotive tire manufacturers for example conducted a series of tests to understand whether the whole process fits well into the scheme of their things. Thus broadly we can say that the company did not have a proper segmentation strategy even tough they generically segmented the target based on the usage.

  • They have made sure that the whole product and the concept was branded well and the brand message that they were communicating to the customers were relevant to them. They basically projected the zero waste concept and better cost efficiencies that could be attained in the long run (Lang, T, 1995). They have also made sure that the customers had the option of customizing the products based on their requirements and ensured that the support systems were in place. This was seen as a value addition to the customers and they were given a feeling that they are using a branded product. This was done by means of Green Rubber inside campaign which was trying to emulate the success of Intel. Thus overall the brand came with a proposition that is relevant in the recent times, but the concept was new and would take some time to be accepted at a global level.

  • The customers in this case would be retread industry, automotive industry and companies that produce other general rubber products. Out of these three segments we can say that the retread industry is the easiest segment that they could target (Stanton, J.L. 1991). This is because of the fact that the number of tests that were conducted was less and the product and the concept was readily accepted in the industry and this was not the case with automotive industry which had many OEMs who had a series of steps before they could actually use the product. The main criteria that these customers had and the quality of the product, performance of the product under specified conditions, flexibility in terms of usage and various other factors such as cost effectiveness and operational efficiency that this brings into the whole process. The customers were given flexibility in terms of production of their final components based on their requirements and this would be possible only if they were given licenses. The company also provided the required backend support in terms of servicing and marketing of the products.

  • The potential of the product looks to be good considering the fact that the demand and the supply would breakeven in the year 2017 and there is going to be an immense supply shortage and it would be possible only if we can come up with effective ways of recycling the existing rubber that we would be able to meet the requirements. But the main challenge that the company would be facing here would be to acceptance of the concept (Olson, J.J. 1996). In this age when almost every other product is being projected and marketed as a green initiative, there is a high chance that this also goes into the crowd if not promoted properly. The challenge lies in the fact that the users have to be educated and they have to be fully aware of the advantages that they can have with the use of such advanced technologies.

  • Conclusion

  • The concept of Green rubber was introduced long back in 90s by the Petro group but was not able to get the required visibility and acceptance amongst its users at that point in time. But now in this era where environmental preservation is one of the main themes that guides the human life, and given the impending supply shortage of rubber that is on cards. It becomes all the more relevant. It is just that the product and the concept need to be marketed to the right audience at the right time in the right manner. The company should be able to convince the customers about the benefits that they would be getting and should find a value addition in using the product.

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