Since the start in 2007, Rapunzel has provided hair extensions of premium quality to customers worldwide. Sales predominantly stem from the company’s online store but also from their own hair salons in Sweden.
“Sweden is our main market but in order to reach growth objective, continued international expansion is vital”, says Eva Fraenkel, CMO at Rapunzel of Sweden.
The collaboration with Business Sweden aimed to provide Rapunzel with strategic advisory based on market insights, serving as input to the company’s internationalization plan, and to define a go-to-market strategy. Rapunzel had their eyes set on a number of European markets but needed to understand market potential in order to know where and how to prioritize their expansion.
“We have done very well in Germany and hope to reach the same success in our target markets. In order to do so, we needed to understand the potential for our products and what would be the most efficient way to establish business,” Eva continues.
Rapunzel’s sales outside Sweden mainly comes from their own online store. E-commerce is increasing rapidly in many European markets, and it is a convenient way to expand business and reach new customer groups fast. However, it also requires another kind of logistic solutions and an infrastructure enabling e.g. safe payments. Market matureness and sales channels used by competitors were hence two important factors to analyze. Another two were target groups and purchasing habits.
“Never underestimate the local conditions and preferences! We have learned that Dutch women can leave their homes with wet hair and tend to be styled by a professional only for specific occasions. French and Italian women go to hair salons several times a month and depend very much on their hairdresser’s recommendations, whereas women in England to a larger extent apply the ‘do-it-yourself’ concept. This all affects our strategy and makes it important for us to know our customer, information that Business Sweden has provided us with,” Eva adds.
By being present at the local scenes, Business Sweden were able to provide Rapunzel of Sweden with market insights and give recommendations on how Rapunzel should prioritize and approach markets in order to reach growth objectives. The result is continued collaboration on the selected market to implement the go-to-market strategy recommended by Business Sweden.