After two decades on the market, the Grite brand is this year's winner of the Brand of the Year competition. Huge achievement!
‘Grite is one of the oldest Lithuanian brands, so we are pleased to see its consistent growth and innovative steps, including new product creation, development, and the introduction of 'premium' products in recent years. This brand is successfully winning over its share of consumers from foreign manufacturers, so Grite products can be seen more often in Lithuanian homes ', said Artūras Urbonavičius, Head of the Nielsen Retail Measurement for Eastern Europe and Chair of the Product of the Year commission, in summarising the commission's decision to grant its main award to Grite.
It is a great evaluation of the whole team for their success in tackling the challenge to sustain local hygienic tissue paper on the market and leadership in the country. The consumers' loyalty to this brand is not accidental. Investments, openness to changes and the application of the latest market trends have determined its success.
Our people – Robertas Krutikovas, Oksana Bogomolnikova, Juozas Paknys, and Sima Svorobovič talk about how Grite has grown and changed, and why it stands out from its rivals.
What does Grite brand mean to You?
“Grite is important to us and what we care about. I myself took an active part in the Grite makeover project during the stages of its strategic development and implementation. I want to remain within the centre of changes related to the Grite brand, and for this reason, I actively participate in processes concerning Grite’s development, sales, and image creation. I am happy that the Grite brand is celebrating its twentieth anniversary, because we are leaders in the category of hygienic tissue paper in Lithuania, we hold a certain amount of market share in the Baltic States, and all this has been highly evaluated by its investors and shareholders. I believe that the success of Grite is improving the value of our entire business.”
“The answer to this question is very simple – I know that it is easier to find and I know that it is good. I know that it is good when I have Grite. This is a quality product manufactured in Lithuania, and its persuasive design quietly shouts 'take me, man' from the shelf to consumers of various tastes.”
What were the main stages of developement of the brand in the last few years?
“When looking back at the developments, I would highlight several stages. The period of approximately 2008–2009 could be called the first stage, when we purchased a conversion line and launched the production of a glued three-layer toilet paper. Orchidea Gold, an entirely new toilet paper, was developed and we conquered and further developed the market segment of three-layer toilet paper in Lithuania. The next important stage in the life of Grite was our movement towards quality. We renewed the Grite brand, ceased manufacturing two-layer tissues and Grite toilet paper became exclusively available in three layers. The third stage was the period of 2016–2017, when we acquired a new paper conversion line and developed technologically new paper printing, which cannot be found from our rivals' yet. We also upgraded and supplemented our range of products, introducing another new market segment and its products: four-layer toilet paper and Charisma paper towels.”
“Grite is gradually changing every year. Not only has its design changed, but also the way in which new products are introduced. Throughout the years of Grite’s existence, efforts have been consistently made to be closer to its consumers – both in terms of geography and the satisfaction of expectations. We are trying to hear our consumers' expectations, satisfy them, and offer them something that they expect from Grite products. Are our customers only focused on the main function of the paper and nothing else? The buyers will find this in Grite’s products. Do they want a particular colour, scent and pattern, or more sophisticated packaging? Grite has what’s needed to appeal to this type of buyer. Another important change is the launching of informational activities by Grite. The packaging contains information about the paper they buy, e.g. the number of layers, sheets and paper from which the cellulose waste paper was made from, etc. We are proud of Grite doing things that our competitors do not.”
Tell us about how the sales process of Grite production changed in years.
“When people manage to find a common language and get on the same train on time, the train starts moving. If sales and production work together, rather than each in a different direction, the train continues to move forward. If production and sales teams are involved in product development, good results are guaranteed, and when talking about the changing sales processes, I could quote from the lyrics of an old SEL band song: 'Hey, tolyn tolyn, gyvenimas vis gerėja ir gerėja' (laughing) ('Hey, further and further, life is getting better and better'). In short, we keep on going, embracing more and earning more, so we can afford to offer more.”
“We can feel the growth and it consists of many things. We want Grite to be closer to its consumers, so we are interested in geographical development. I talk with our partners every day and try to persuade them that Grite products have to be on their shelves. Moreover, I highlight the advantages of Grite compared to the other products available on the shelf, and the value they will receive from selling Grite products. Efforts to make Grite accessible to every consumer are made on a daily basis.”
What is unique about Grite?
“Grite is not only unique in its long history, but also for its peculiar attention to its clients. Today, we are perceived by our consumers as a family brand. Thus, our main distinctive feature is that we offer quality products for families and their welfare.”
“Indeed, we are a fair brand in educating our consumers. All packages of Grite products contain the Grite Balance Rate (quality levels) – it is our own unique system, which we use to specify the raw materials and number of layers and sheets, including the weight and the length of the paper roll. Consumers are provided with information that helps them choose the product that suits them best. Another distinctive feature of Grite is its newly-developed paper print (patterns). The patterns were created from scratch and drawn by hand, and these new patterns were very carefully coordinated with the product line manufacturer, because the design looks absolutely different on paper, on the metal manufacturing shaft and on the finished product. We took special care to discuss every single dot on the paper, until we achieved the result we are now happy with. A huge amount of love was put into the creation of all the packages and products.”
„Grite“ – brand of the year 2017. What would You wish „Grite“ brand and its team in the future?
“Without any doubt, Grite should be the leader in the Baltic States, i.e. in our home market. We also set goals for ourselves to establish our positions within the Scandinavian markets. So, I hope Grite will become the most highly recognised and well-known brand throughout the Baltic States and the nearby export markets. I believe that we can all be happy of working with the brand that we have managed to develop throughout the last two decades. I want everyone to continue trying to do their best and keep Grite in the leading position.”
“I want Grite to be the largest and most successful family of products, and to be a brand loved by its consumers. To the team – I want all my colleagues to love the Grite brand, because nothing else but their love and efforts will guarantee the success of Grite.”