Marketing Innovation

The Ulla Popken Case:
Ulla Popken is a German Clothing Manufacturer, with a Brand skewed to “Curvy
This market is a very competitive one, and growing fast, as the need for something
more tailored to curvy forms becomes more defined and accepted. It covers sizes
from the Italian 46, on (>10 US size).
The brand Ulla Popken is very reliable and well received in Germany. It is
positioned at index 100 Vs the market, in terms of price, offering excellent Value
for money.
In Italy it has a small, fast growing and very profitable market, linked mainly to
stores in franchising.
Their Selling policy toward franchisee is to sell the goods, and not give them in
“sale or return”, as it is customary in Italy, requiring more risk on behalf of the
Consumers in general recognize UllaPopken a superior quality of product
(materials and detail), together with a good variety of range, for different tastes.
This also includes the specific target’s needs: durability, resistance to sweat and to
friction, shape and cut that gives comfort and good looks, for the specific body
features of a Plus Size. In Italy, a good 1/3 of the International line is accepted by
consumers as being in line with Italian fashion taste and needs.
Ulla Popken is planning to open 30 new points of sale in Italy by 2022.
Main Competitors in Italy are:
• Elena Mirò – Miroglio Fashion group
• Marina Rinaldi – Max Mara Group
• Fiorella Rubino –
• Luisa Viola – Miroglio Fashion group
• Per te By Krizia
Most Main Brands are launching “plus size” Brands, such as H&M, with H&M +;
Mango, with Violeta and Asos with Asos Curve.
The Market in the US is fast growing also among the young targets, and -for
example – adolescent kids passed from 19% in 2012 to 34% in 2016.
In Italy, 1 out of 5 women exceeds size 48, more than 38% has a problem with size
44 and >35% wears a size >46.
The potential Userbase in Italy is of 8MM clients, with >1.3MM with a strong
propensity to shop in the specialized sector of +sizes clothes. 2
Answer the following questions and prepare the required charts to support the
answers. At the end, prepare a brief executive summary of how you would
approach the Italian marketing relaunch, in order to support the store openings.
(Q. 7).
Q.1) In what direction will the opening of new stores in Italy increment the
business for Ulla Popken as a group? (Mkt sh Vs Mkt Growth…); Describe the
potential the Italian market represent.
Q. 2) Which areas of the market would you investigate first with research
conducted in Italy and what kind of data would you source from the mother
company, in order to prepare your new Marketing Plan for the year 2021-2022?
Q. 3) In what stage of the market (PLC) do you think Ulla Popken lives as a brand
in Germany? And in Italy? Why?
Q.4) Which do you believe would be your main marketing challenges as an Ulla
Popken Marketing Director, for the opening of 30 new stores in Italy in less than
2 years? 3
Q. 5) Which do you believe would be your main marketing challenges/objectives/
priorities as an Ulla Popken Franchisee, for the opening of one of the 30 new
stores in Italy in one year?
Q. 6) What additional Services would you recommend in your marketing plan, in
order to make penetration larger on the Italian market, in sight of the launch of the
new stores?
Q. 7) Given the following positioning assumption and positioning desired shift
(ATTACHMENT 1.), what do you believe would be your main Objectives,
Marketing strategies, Key Concepts and Communication Strategy, to ensure to
increase demand enough to support all store openings? And what extra services
and digital products/services would you launch in Italy, to increase the business
both toward Consumers and Partners (Franchisees)?
Please write the answer in a structured essay, organized as an executive summary,
350-600 words, as if you were to write a recommendation to your CEO in
Germany. 4