Merck KGaA push will set itself apart from its namesake

SAN DIEGO: Merck KGaA, the German chemical and pharmaceutical company, has launched a brand-awareness initiative to help distinguish itself from the more widely known, but unaffiliated Merck & Co. Its agency of record, the Townsend Agency, will assist with the effort.

SAN DIEGO: Merck KGaA, the German chemical and pharmaceutical company, has launched a brand-awareness initiative to help distinguish itself from the more widely known, but unaffiliated Merck & Co. Its agency of record, the Townsend Agency, will assist with the effort.

To kick things off, CN Biosciences, part of Merck's life-science products division, changed its name to EMD Biosciences, effective January 1 of this year. The long-term goal is for all of the company's North American affiliates to eventually be brought under the new EMD name.

Through surveys, EMD learned that customers could identify the company's product brands (Calbiochem, Novabiochem, Novagen, and Oncogene Research Products), but did not know that the same company developed all of them.

"We are getting the EMD Biosciences name out there, and demonstrating the connection between the brands," explained Bob Mierendorf, chief technology officer for EMD.

The company will align its products by maintaining the same focus areas for each brand, focusing on its commitment to application-specific expertise and responsive customer and technical support.

James Forte, account supervisor for Townsend, said life-science trade publications and global and local business press would be immediate targets.

A document, which demonstrates how EMD's brands are linked to parent Merck, will be developed by the agency to appear on the inside cover of company catalogues distributed to scientists.

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