capricorn society limited

building long term value

Industries: B2B Automotive, Financial Services

Assignments: Communication Support Program, strategy consulting, business start up

Capricorn is a member-based organisation operating by cooperative principles to build businesses in the automotive industry. The business harnesses the power in numbers with over 15,000 members (predominantly SMEs) and 2,200 preferred suppliers across Australia, New Zealand and South Africa. Capricorn allows members to better manage their businesses by saving time and money.

challenge

Capricorn is a geographically challenged business. Spread across three countries and 11 time zones, it was critical to build a member community identity of 'One cooperative, three nations'. The task was to continually create communications that were relevant, engaging and worked within the strategic imperative of the organisation’s cooperative ideals. Every dollar spent was a dollar that was not being returned to members in dividends. The cooperative needed to grow to harness the power in numbers. Later, in response to common member issues, Capricorn also formed a new insurance mutual (Capricorn Mutual). This required extensive member education about the important differences between regular insurance and the new discretionary mutual offering.

solution

imageseven began working with Capricorn in 1990. Initially the work centred on creating communications to create community and keep members informed in the 'before Google' era. A strategic theme to communications (which is still followed today) celebrated the differences between regions and highlighted the common benefits of cooperation. Capricorn Mutual required an initial shift to an educational campaign pre-launch followed by extensive direct mail to targeted members to win the business of members who we had identified as key influencers.

results

When imageseven started working with Capricorn in 1990, total sales were AUD 30 million. We worked continuously with the organisation on many projects for the next 21 years, creating and executing the basic strategic and messaging building blocks of the cooperative. 2011 sales exceeded AUD 1,029 million. Capricorn Mutual, the insurance alternative, fundamentally changed the dynamics of SME insurance in the automotive sector and captured 40 percent market share in the first two years.

client feedback

“The team at imageseven became an integral part of the Capricorn success story. I relied on their strategic insight as well as their ability to consistently execute on time and on budget.”

Trent Bartlett, CEO 2001-2011