19 July 2023


Company Project Work is one of the key parts of the Business Management Master‘s program coordinated by professors Angelo Manaresi and Barbara Lorenzini, respectively Scientific Director of the Master’s program and Professor of Marketing in Bologna Business School. Company Project Work is a curricular activity that puts students in direct contact with companies: four weeks to work on a real case proposed by company executives, bring Master’s participants to work directly on concrete issues and coming in touch with company dynamics. A challenge that allows them to approach the internship phase in the company with more awareness.

On May 30, the I Project Work of the students of the Italian Premium Brands track – Max Mara & Marina Rinaldi Entering the Brazilian Market – concluded at Villa Guastavillani. Giovanni Nizzi, Global Commercial Director, and Stefania Pisi, Corporate HR Manager of Max Mara, listened and commented on the final presentations of the 5 groups of students from the BBS Master in Business Management, who worked for almost a month on the topic proposed in the Kick Off of the project: how to penetrate the Brazilian market for two Italian fashion brands, Max Mara and Marina Rinaldi.

The teams, who worked supervised by Prof. Alberto Calugi, Strategic Marketing Consultant, presented their papers starting from the analysis of the Brand and the competitive context, of the clothing industry, focusing on the perception of Made in Italy in Brazil. The students then worked on the analysis of the technical, logistical and legal situation of the target market and developed a Brand Positioning Map to compare Max Mara & Marina Rinaldi with Brazilian and international direct competitor brands. Finally, the focus turned to the consumer: focus on the target audience, analysis of the propensity to spend and buying habits, and a study of the online market. Next, the 5 groups moved on to proposals.

The first provided a comprehensive overview of distribution strategies, analyzing legal issues, identifying the most appropriate cities, and drafting a report on costs determined by wages, taxes, and infrastructure.

The second team focused on the relationship between a DOS strategy (Direct Owned Stores) and the opening of a franchise with three stores in three different big cities, highlighting the pros and cons of the two visions and proposing an interesting hybrid: to open two directly controlled stores and a franchise network with a strong support system to keep the level of the business proposition high.

The third group focused on a macro-area analysis, identifying the main differences between one area of the country and another, and proposed a three-step business strategy: September 2023, establishment of an administrative office in São Paulo; April 2024, opening a Max Mara flagship store in Rio de Janeiro; April 2024, opening other Max Mara mono-brand stores in the country. November 2024, opening of a Marina Rinaldi corner in the Village Mall Center in Rio de Janeiro; 2025, distribution of Marina Rinaldi in multi-brand stores in the country and opening of an e-commerce channel for both brands.

The fourth team looked at the role of marketing, analyzing Sao Paulo Fashion Week and setting up a penetration strategy through two local distributors in two large States, starting with an aggressive pricing policy (discounts of up to 40 percent in the beginning) and the social world (recruiting famous local influencers and related cost analysis).

In the end, the fifth team proposed a shared marketing plan with local distributors, structured through steps: training in Max Mara, market launches with events and social promotions, and gradual expansion in stores in the country’s major cities. At the core of the project, the protection of intellectual property and the assumption by the local distributor of the total risk of the unsold.

This was an important confrontation for the students of the Bologna Business School‘s Business Management Master, track Italian Premium Brands, who had the opportunity to talk with Giovanni Nizzi and Stefania Pisi about their own projects and the ideas they put in place.

The global path proposed by Bologna Business School in its Business Management Professional Master includes, in addition to face-to-face lectures, activities such as Project Work and MGIncontri, meetings with executives who talk about their companies or start-ups, in order to introduce students to the world of business, guiding them to the career they have always dreamed of.


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