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Superbrands case studies - Boots

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					Lecturer: Joanne Cockings


                 Superbrands case studies - Boots

Brand Republic 10-Mar-08, 14:10

Boots is the UK's leading health and beauty retailer and has been
trading since the 19th century. With around 1,500 stores in the UK
and Irish Republic, it serves approximately 8m customers every week.

Boots develops and sells own brand products, a number of which are
leaders in their respective markets. The Boots brand is founded on the
trust, expertise and heritage, which comes with its longevity in the
market.

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Market

Boots Group operates three principal businesses: Boots The Chemists;
Boots Opticians; and Boots Retail International.

Pharmacy is a fundamentally important part of the brand; representing
one quarter of sales, it is the foundation of Boots' authority and
credibility.

Boots stores are mostly located on high streets; but, in line with modern
shopping trends, its presence in edge of town retail parks is rapidly
increasing. Over the last three years 48 such stores have opened, as well
as a flagship London store on Oxford Street.

Overseas, Boots is working closely with other major retailers in their
local markets, to open Boots branded "implants" within their stores.
There are currently 758 implants in 13 countries. Boots also has 96
standalone stores in Thailand.

Achievements
Boots has had an illustrious history. From its beginnings in 1849 as an
herbalist shop, Boots has continually developed new product ranges, many
of which are now household names in their own right.

By the 1930s, Boots had more than 1,000 stores selling a wide range of
products, including its new cosmetic range, No7. Expansion overseas
began as early as 1936 with a store in New Zealand.



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Lecturer: Joanne Cockings


Following World War II, Boots continued to grow, expanding its
manufacturing and research capabilities, including an agricultural division.
The creation of the National Health Service in 1948 led to a vast
increase in dispensing, which Boots embraced.

Over the years Boots has successfully introduced brands such as 17
cosmetics, aimed at teenagers, which was introduced in 1968 and new
business ventures such as Boots Opticians -- now a major division of the
business.

In 1985 the Research Department received the Queen's Award for
Technological Achievement for the discovery and development of
ibuprofen. The analgesic ibuprofen was introduced in 1969 as a
prescription drug, but launched as the over the counter brand, Nurofen,
in 1983.

Boots' internet business has become increasingly important in the new
millennium and a successful part of the brand. Improvements have been
made to the online customer experience making navigation easier,
resulting in boots.com sales becoming bigger than those of the largest
Boots store.

Product
Boots is best known for selling a wide range of products under the Boots
brand name across health and beauty. Within this portfolio, it has the
UK's biggest beauty brand in No7, and Soltan, the UK's number one
suncare range (Source: TNS Worldpanel). In early 2007, the retailer
launched the Boots Expert range; research and development has always
been key to Boots, developing new products to improve its own-brands and
exclusives ranges.

Boots Advantage Card, which awards customers four points for every
pound spent, (with points redeemable for products instore), is a hugely
important part of the business. With almost 15m active cardholders,
Advantage Cards are used in around 70% of BTC sales. Linked to the
Advantage Card, in 2005 Boots launched its Parenting Club for expectant
and new mothers, and followed it with the Boots Health Club in 2006,
giving regular advice and information as well as discounted products to its
members.

Installed in 1999, Boots Advantage Card kiosks provide cardholders with
personalised offers based on their shopping habits. Boots is now updating



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Lecturer: Joanne Cockings


its Advantage Card kiosks in 485 of its high street stores with smaller,
faster and easier to navigate models. Updated technology will also enable
offers to be more targeted.

Recent developments
The merger between Alliance UniChem plc and Boots Group plc was
completed on July 1 2006, creating an international pharmacy-led health
and beauty group operating in more than 15 countries across the world.

The Alliance Boots network will include two retail formats, both under
the Boots brand, ranging from approximately 1,500 smaller dispensing
pharmacies to approximately 800 larger destination high street and edge
of town health and beauty stores. In addition, Alliance Boots will also
operate approximately 300 additional retail outlets, including
freestanding Boots Opticians practices.

Boots is also developing in-store "health zones" in its bigger stores, which
will include extended waiting areas for customers collecting prescriptions.
Consultation rooms for pharmacists are also being introduced, as part of
a government initiative to alleviate the pressure on GPs' surgeries.

Promotion
Boots uses a wide range of media on an ongoing basis, including TV, press,
and direct mailings to its Advantage Card members to highlight new
products, offers and services.

Brand values
Jesse Boot, the son of John Boot, the brand's eponymous founder, took
control of the business in the 1870s. He had a business philosophy of
buying in bulk and passing the benefit of reduced prices on to his
customers. His policy of superior goods at competitive prices delivered
with expert care meant that the Boots name became synonymous with
quality, value and service. His earliest marketing was based around the
concept of "Largest, Best and Cheapest - Branches Everywhere".

This philosophy is still an important part of Boots' today. It aims to treat
its customers fairly and to act with integrity in everything it does, which
results in the brand regularly being rated as the UK's most trusted
brand.

Boots also believes that it has an enormously valuable role to play in
promoting the health of the nation. It achieves this by forming



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Lecturer: Joanne Cockings


innovative, long term partnerships with charities, particularly focusing on
women's cancer. Boots has worked with Breast Cancer Care for 11 years,
and this year linked with the Eve Appeal to highlight ovarian cancer.
Boots also supports the health of the UK everyday through its 15,000
healthcare advisers working in store.

Things you didn't know about Boots The Chemist

      In 2001 Boots launched the world's first disposable hearing aid,
       Songbird.
      Eight per cent of Boots customers visit boots.com before going
       into the stores.
      No7 cosmetics have been relaunched six times, most dramatically
       in 2005 when the entire new range was introduced overnight in all
       Boots stores.
      Boots made a significant contribution to the war effort, producing
       items such as water sterilisers, vermin powder and anti-fly cream
       for men at the Front.
      During 2005/2006 Boots sold 0.8 million pairs of spectacles.

Timeline
1849 John Boot opens an herbalist shop in Goose Gate, Nottingham.
1892 A flagship Boots store opens at Pelham Street, Nottingham.
1920 Boots Pure Drug Company Ltd is sold




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