Xii) Tupperware

- Tupperware is the example of how an apparently mature brand has reinvented itself.

- It is a global organisation that sells plastic food-storage containers to suburban housewives at Tupperware parties that has moved well beyond its popular-culture stereotype with revenue now exceeding $US 2 billion from sales in over 100 countries
- In Australia, from 1998 to 2009 sales tripled and almost all homes have some Tupperware products
- Even during the GFC the organisation performed well with more people cooking at home and storing leftovers using Tupperware products plus unemployment pushed people into the home-based Tupperware sales force.

Its success is linked with a competitive advantage around products, selling methods and career opportunities for women. Yet these could be thought to be the biggest problems facing Tupperware, ie

"...daggy products, sold at 1950s-era morning tea parties by women who now have far better career opportunities in the salaried workforce..."

Lucinda Schmidt, 2010

Furthermore, during the 1980s, Tupperware had to handle the cheap imitations that flooded the market.

Tupperware reinvented itself by bringing in female cosmetic-industry designers to replace the male-dominated industrial designers. The beauty designers introduced colours, sharper designs and the categories, such as serving utensils and kitchen gadgets. Rather than compete on price, Tupperware decided to innovate with, for example the silicon cake mould, and produced products that offer lifetime guarantees. This is its competitive advantage around products.

Around selling methods - 90 percent of its products are still sold at Tupperware parties. The type of parties has changed over time from "lonely" mothers meeting their neighbours to girls" night-out for busy working women. These night-outs are more interactive and less structured than in the past and often include cocktails and cooking tips.

Around career opportunity - the initial success of Tupperware in the post WW2-era was a way for women to earn some money and to meet socially. Now most of the women involved are in full-time paid work with Tupperware and earning money similar to professional people. Furthermore, it is giving women a chance to build their own business, especially in cultures where opportunities for work outside the home is limited. In developing countries, it allows women to develop some financial independence

 

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