Metso’s opti rebranding : focus on the promotion of the renewed opti product families in China
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- Master Thesis 
Metso Paper Mills Business Unit abridged as “Metso” in this paper, assigned this study. Metso is a global supplier of technology and services in the pulp and paper process industry, and it focuses on delivering profitability and sustainability to customers. Metso currently provides 136 products under three main brands: Opti, Sym and Val. The inconsistent mixture of these three brands has been confusing Metso internally and its customers externally. Thus, Opti rebranding applies Opti as Metso’s sole brand to unify its previous brands, to reposition and modularize Metso’s selected offerings to capture the growing Chinese mid-market under a lower total cost of ownership. The main purpose of this study is to gain understanding of the Chinese customers’ perceptions of Opti rebranding to assist Metso in effectively promoting the renewed Opti in the Chinese market, while trying to explore guanxi’s role in selecting a supplier. The literature review consists of rebranding, guanxi and service-dominant logic. The research method applied to this paper is qualitative interviewing and participant observation. Two Ji’an customers were interviewed as a pilot study, in addition to prestudied 12 experienced Metso employees. A field study on 17 Chinese customers from six different papermaking companies was carried out in China during six weeks’ time. All data was audio-recorded, member-checked and manually analysed by the researcher. The findings of this study are that the Chinese customers pay little attention to the name changes, but emphasize the tangible values of the renewed Opti. In China, guanxi might be crucial in selecting a supplier when the suppliers’ price and quality are at similar level. However, the Chinese mostly value cost-efficiency (性价比), technology level and reliable references. Hence, it is suggested for Metso to promote the renewed Opti in a holistic and detailed manner. For example, the latest and proven technology will be cost-efficient and ecological, and fast solve the customers’ existing problems. Moreover, customized rebuilding and/or upgrading will reduce the operational costs, while reliable references and sufficient technical data will support the aforementioned values.