Strategy is the Art
of Embracing
the Unknown

25A0 is unicode for black square and a boutique strategy office at the intersection of culture, arts, technology, and science.

We conduct commissioned and self-initiated ventures and projects, partnering with clients from the public and private sector.

Ventures

Strategic Foresight

Deutsche Telekom AG

Europes biggest telco wanted to identify emerging trends at the intersection of art and technology. We conduct seminars, a podcast, and a publication exploring weak signals in art and tech.

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Brand Strategy / Portfolio Integration

Carlsberg

Carlsberg acquired the German beer brand Wernesgrüner. We help to maintain the brand’s local authenticity while preventing brand cannibalization within the existing portfolio.

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Brand Strategy / Organizational Development

Schmitt + Sohn

Schmitt + Sohn, a family owned enterprise in its 6th generation, needs to update its brand. We develop the strategic framework and install a new department.

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Strategic Narrative / Award Logic

Polyton

POLYTON is a new platform and music award to highlight the social impact of pop music. We create the strategic narrative and the participatory award mechanism.

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Systemic Change

Agents of Transformation

AOT bridges the gap between the next generation in arts and design and European policy making. We connect students with high-level decision-makers in politics and industry.

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Brand Strategy

Cariad

The biggest automaker in the world converges the separate software divisions from its brand portfolio in a new companywide department. We develop the strategic framework with a focus on employer branding.

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Employer Branding Strategy

Schneider Electric

Schneider Electric reshapes its employer value proposition in the DACH region. We provide the strategic direction and create alignment across the board.

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Organizational Transformation

Reeperbahn Festival

The leading international music festival evolves from an annual event series to a holistic music platform. We develop and implement the strategic framework for this transformation.

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Growth Strategy

Krautreporter

A young online publisher with an industry-leading business model faced challenges in user acquisition and retention. We developed a purpose-driven loyalty strategy that led to sustainable growth.

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Brand Strategy

TD Reply

A marketing innovation consultancy transforms its business model and service portfolio. We develop a purpose-driven new brand identity and restructure their service offerings.

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Journal

Interface Critique

Interface Critique is an academic platform, that facilitates trans-disciplinary dialogues about human-computer interaction.

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Partners

 

If you want to know more or request a case study, please get in touch:

hello@25a0.com

Cases

Carlsberg

Task

In a strategic move to expand its market presence, Carlsberg acquired the German beer brand Wernesgrüner. Known for its rich heritage and strong regional identity, Wernesgrüner presented both an opportunity and a challenge for Carlsberg. The main objectives were to maintain Wernesgrüner’s local authenticity, prevent brand cannibalization within Carlsberg’s existing portfolio, and develop a robust market positioning while integrating the local workforce into the new corporate structure.

Workshop with local employees and corporate communication
Local brand paraphernalia
The drinking hall on the premises
Details of the brewery
Touring the premises

Challenges

1. Local Characteristics: Understanding and preserving Wernesgrüner’s unique local features and consumer base.
2. Avoiding Cannibalization: Ensuring that Wernesgrüner’s introduction does not negatively impact other Carlsberg brands.
3. Strong Positioning: Establishing a distinct and strong market position for Wernesgrüner within the Carlsberg portfolio.
4. Employee Integration: Successfully integrating the Wernesgrüner workforce into Carlsberg’s operations, maintaining morale and productivity.

Approach

To address these challenges, a series of participatory workshops were conducted on-site at Wernesgrüner. These workshops were designed to be inclusive and collaborative, engaging key stakeholders at various levels of the organization.

Conceptualization
The first step involved thorough planning and design of the workshop formats. This included defining the goals, identifying participants (including local employees, management, and brand experts), and determining the methodology to ensure productive sessions.

Moderation
We facilitated the workshops, ensuring a structured yet open environment. This allowed participants to freely share their insights and ideas, fostering a sense of ownership and collaboration.

Documentation
All discussions and ideas were meticulously documented. This involved capturing the nuances of local preferences, potential market strategies, and any concerns or suggestions from the workforce.

Synthesis
The final step was to synthesize the workshop outcomes. This involved analyzing the collected data to identify key themes and actionable insights. The synthesis provided a comprehensive understanding of how Wernesgrüner could be effectively integrated into Carlsberg’s brand portfolio without losing its unique identity.

Solutions

The workshops yielded several critical insights and solutions:

Local Identity Preservation
It was clear that Wernesgrüner’s local heritage was a significant strength. Strategies were developed to highlight its Saxon roots in marketing campaigns, ensuring that the brand’s authenticity remained intact.

Brand Differentiation
To avoid cannibalization, Wernesgrüner was positioned distinctly from other Carlsberg brands. This involved emphasizing its traditional brewing methods and regional significance, appealing to consumers looking for a genuine, locally-crafted beer.

Market Positioning
A unique market position was crafted for Wernesgrüner, targeting both local beer enthusiasts and a broader audience interested in premium regional beers. This positioning was reinforced through targeted advertising and community engagement initiatives.

Employee Engagement
Integrating the workforce was crucial. Workshops revealed the importance of clear communication and involvement in decision-making processes. Carlsberg implemented continuous engagement programs, ensuring that Wernesgrüner employees felt valued and integral to the brand’s future.

Outcome

The integration of Wernesgrüner into Carlsberg’s portfolio was successful, marked by a seamless transition that honored the brand’s legacy while positioning it for growth. The participatory workshops played a pivotal role, providing a platform for valuable insights and fostering a collaborative atmosphere. As a result, Wernesgrüner retained its local charm and gained a stronger market presence under Carlsberg’s stewardship, demonstrating the effectiveness of a well-structured integration strategy.

This case study highlights the importance of a thoughtful, inclusive approach when integrating a local brand into a global portfolio. By leveraging participatory workshops, Carlsberg was able to navigate the complexities of brand integration, ensuring both business success and cultural preservation.