CONSUMER PRODUCTS DEVELOPMENT: MATRIX BIOLAGE REINVENTION 2014
REINVENTING a brand with a loyal following in record time, delivering a superior, aesthetically beautiful product on-time, under budget, and at the highest quality.
Project Time Frame:
BIOLAGE generates the most revenue and consumer loyalty of Matrix's brands. Because of this, Biolage had not changed considerably since 1993, and the undertaking of restaging this beloved product line demanded extreme attention and precision in order to create a product that was beautiful, effective, ergonomic, consistent, manufacturable, and profitable. The bottle needed to elevate the "science inspired by nature" aspect of the brand and yet had to remain accessible and familiar to the loyal customers that had made it so popular.
- Cross-Functional Team Management
- Cost-Of-Goods (COG) Analysis
- Color Matching
- Timeline Management
- Packaging Design
- Communication and negotiation with vendors and manufacturing plants
- Flexibility and adaptivity in creating a process to speed-up time-to-launch
- Challenging Brand on aesthetic decisions that did not positively impact the P&L
Teams worked with:
- Matrix Brand (aka Marketing)
- Matrix Creative
- Package Engineering
- Purchasing (Raw Materials & Components)
- Contract Manufacturing (internal)
- 10 different component vendors and external manufacturers and subcontractors
- 3 L'Oreal R&D teams
- 4 L'Oreal internal manufacturing plants
- Plant Finance and Accounting
- Division (Corporate) Finance
This project was a start-to-finish launch meaning that I was involved from conception of the shape and materials, the iterative design of the new packaging components, the color matching, the formulation discussions and approvals, the costing, the decision-making on Cost of Goods vs. Aesthetics, the supplier relations (particularly when we had last-minute creative changes), the solving of security tagging issues at the plant, the approval of the final product, and then shipping the product nationally and internationally.
My role as Developer in this project was to lead the launch from the "Industry" side. This involved:
- Creation, coordination, and enforcement of R&D, Creative, Brand, Package Engineering, and Manufacturing timeline.
- Costing of the Brand and Creative team's initial concept and then working with them to develop lower-cost alternatives.
- Understanding R&D's formulation requirements, coordinating batch testing with the manufacturing plants and alternative formulations when the formulations could not be industrialized
- Working with Brand to understand their needs for the package design and also to understand the limitations of the manufacturing process to help them get the best package possible, while helping the Brand understand and accept the limitations.
- Testing the formulas with the packaging to ensure appropriate dispensing (squeezability & orifice)
- Managing all color matching with vendors - caps, bottles, pumps, labels, etc, including on-site trips for trial and production to ensure an amazing match, even between different materials.
- Reporting on Cost Savings and Cost Challenges to upper management
- Working with package engineering and the production plant on production issues
- Leading launch coordination with international counterparts in France, Brazil, and India
- Ensuring on-time delivery for 95% of the SKU's (the last 5% had a subcontracting issue that could not be solved in time for launch).