SC Johnson's CSR Initiatives - Testing the 'Base of The Pyramid' Protocol

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Case Details:

Case Code : BECG072
Case Length : 19 Pages
Period : 1994-2006
Pub Date : 2007
Teaching Note : Available
Organization : SC Johnson
Industry : Consumer Products
Countries : US

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This case study was compiled from published sources, and is intended to be used as a basis for class discussion. It is not intended to illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of a management situation. Nor is it a primary information source.

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Background Note

SC Johnson's history dated back to the year 1886, when Samuel Curtis Johnson (Samuel Curtis), who was a sales representative with the Racine Hardware Company, purchased the company's parquet flooring business. Most of the customers who had these floors laid, wanted to know how to preserve and take care of it. This gave Samuel Curtis the idea of developing a beeswax-based polish for the floors, which he started selling to the customers. The floor polish became popular and he renamed the company Johnson's Prepared Paste Wax Company. By 1888, Samuel Curtis launched the product nationally. Soon, he realized that there was a huge market for products used to protect furniture and enhance their appearance...

Business Ethics Case Studies | Case Study in Management, Operations, Strategies, Business Ethics, Case Studies

Base of Pyramid Protocol

The BOP concept was developed by Hart and Prof CK Prahalad (Prahalad). It referred to people who earned less than US$ 1,500 per annum. Most of the companies and products targeted consumers who were at the 'top of the pyramid,' earning above US$ 15,000 a year on an average...

SC Johnson and the BOP Protocol

SC Johnson was involved with BOP even before this term was coined. Way back in the year 1935, when Herbert Fisk Jr. went on a 15,000 mile expedition from Wisconsin in the US to Brazil, searching for a sustainable source of Carnaúba wax, which was widely used in the company's products. He established production facilities to produce high quality Carnaúba wax in the country. This venture brought in business value to the company, as it could obtain good quality wax, and the community benefited through developmental activities carried out by the company which included, the Johnson School of Primary Education that was established in 1963...

The Benefits

With the success of the initial BOP ventures, SC Johnson was confident that there was a market for its products among the BOP consumers. It realized that by bringing in minor changes in its products, it could cater to these consumers across the world...


Exhibit I: Greenlist
Exhibit II: SC Johnson - Awards
Exhibit III: SC Johnson - International Operations
Exhibit IV: SC Johnson - Products
Exhibit V: Mutual Value Creation
Exhibit VI: SC Johnson - Other Bop Initiatives


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