How does innovation actually work?

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The secret is solid customer relationships and partnerships, as well as proximity to end consumers. Learn more in the conversation with Bernd Söllner, Head of R&D, and Nicole Zimmermann, Head of Product Management CE.

Where do you think innovation starts?

The key groundwork is performed by our Market Intelligence and Human-Centred Design teams. This involves observing market, customer, technology and consumer trends, and conducting user and customer research. Their recommendations provide substantial support for our innovation processes. Most important, however, are solid customer relationships and partnerships, as well as proximity to end consumers. It is precisely this consumer focus that must always be considered as only when we fully understand consumer needs can we develop excellent products that catch on and are successful.

How do you turn a trend into a new type of product?

We have the specialist expertise to be able to offer customer-oriented solutions according to the motto ‘your desire, our solution’. The innovative and powerful ingredients provided by our suppliers and partners are the building blocks of our formulations, from which, thanks to our advanced formulation technology, new products emerge. We devise customised solutions by making specific adjustments to the new products, thereby creating real added value for every customer.

What else is required?

Our products must also work technically. That means we’re always looking for novel and sustainable solutions in terms of product applications, too. Here, it is often the small innovations in terms of use and application that are most highly valued, yet they generally go unnoticed in the outside world. We’re very proud of the innovative strength of our packaging development, which has previously been recognised with national and international packaging awards (the Swiss Packaging Award, World Star Award – in the technology, marketing and sustainability categories).

Does innovation always have to be product-related?

The world is changing more and more quickly, and we’re constantly facing greater challenges, especially in terms of health and the environment. New products, certainly, but also new technologies in the fields of biochemistry, cell research, digitalisation and psychology are all helping us create a sustainable future and ensure many new ‘wellbeing moments’ for our customers. Highly motivated teams at the Mibelle Group are working on the latest technologies or innovative business models and their potential applications. They are supported by a well-developed network of universities, start-ups and research facilities.

Who decides whether an innovation will be a success?

Consumers, and consumers alone. Innovative products, technologies or services are worthless if customers don’t want or take any notice of them. The bottom line of what we do is responding to the needs of our customers as precisely as possible, so that we manage to make a noticeable and credible difference to the daily wellbeing of people and turn their usual everyday routine into something extraordinary.