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European Business and Brand Building

Edited By Luciano Segreto, Hubert Bonin, Andrzej K. Kozminski and Carles Manera

A strong brand is a key factor in business success, both in the short-term and in the long-term. Brands help to provide a better understanding of the corporate and commercial culture of different firms. A brand reveals the knowledge capital held by a company, but also often reflects the perception of the firm held by consumers and stake-holders.
The book explores the historical process of building some of the most famous brands among European businesses and examines the extent to which the brands have contributed to the image of the firms and their differentiation against competitors in the industry.


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CHAPTER 3 - Suchard. A Swiss Chocolate Brand Somewhere in between Traditional and Modern Cultures 75 - Laurent Tissot


75 CHAPTER 3 Suchard A Swiss Chocolate Brand Somewhere in between Traditional and Modern Cultures Laurent TISSOT University of Neuchâtel Whilst nothing predestined the Swiss chocolate industry to develop as a worldwide reference, it none the less succeeded in conveying an image of excellence, notably through its prestigious brands (Nestlé, Lindt&Sprungli, Suchard, Tobler, etc.). This image is mainly associated with alpine mythology,1 and is summoned by a subtle mechanism which originates as a heterogeneous whole of notions that combine a geographical place in space and time, a national identity as well as an industrial process. In a concrete sense, the history of Swiss chocolate and the creation of brands that came with it are directly linked to the birth of a certain way of representing the mountains, to Switzerland and to industrialization. It was presumably a perilous endeavour to convince a customer to eat large quantities of chocolate, based on the fact that it was produced with milk from the mountains as the main reason. The impact of this association on the image of Swiss chocolate comprised a fourfold movement. First, the position and the role of the mountain, understood as a geographical and natural space, had to correspond to an actual advantage (medical, physical, symbolical, cultural, psychological, etc.) from which one was supposed to benefit. Secondly, the position and the role of Switzerland, understood as a national space, had to be in accord with a legitimacy that permitted the other nations to identify and frequent it....

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