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Agrimarketing : January February 2008
January/February 2008 AgriMarketing 67 efforts, even though we demand pre- mium prices for our products." COMMUNICATIONS Internal and external communica- tions is more than critical to Alltech, Lyons says, "It is crucial. I spend most every Friday talking with department managers, the sales force and customers, making sure we are all on the same page and accom- plishing our goals. "Our key points remain the same, whether at our events, on our Web site, in our videos or our ads," says Lyons. "Health, safety, trace- ability ... naturally." In addition to hosting the "Mar- keting Through Education" events, the company also has an aggressive advertising and public relations pro- gram produced in-house by its mar- keting department. Billy Frey, Public Relations Manager, North America reports, "We have always advertised in the trade press that serves feed companies and integrators. However, last year we also began running cam- paigns in dairy, poultry, pork and beef producer media. The goal of that campaign was to educate them about Alltech and the benefits of our nat- ural products so they will ask their feed suppliers to include our prod- ucts as their preferred ingredient. Alltech is quick to understand what is going on "in the field" through its sales reps and participa- tion in local, national, and interna- tional trade fairs. Last year, the company also announced a major communications coup when it was named the lead sponsor of the FEI World Equestrian Games (see sidebar). LOOKING AHEAD Alltech is owned by Lyons with no outside investment and he has no intention of changing that. "I much prefer this remain a family-owned business," he says. "When events dictate or opportunities emerge, we can turn on a dime and don't need to spend our time explaining why. Also, the money that would be expected to be paid in dividends can be re-invested in the company and research to spur additional growth." With his global view, Lyons says the North American livestock indus- try continues to have a bright future. "It has the best resources and infra- structure in the world. "It must be careful, though, to not rest on its laurels," he warns. "It must continue to innovate and invest in its future. Particularly in attracting young talent. We must strive to make this a 'sexy' business that will attract the brightest and the best in animal agri- culture. Other countries are already doing so. For North America to suc- ceed, it must do so, as well." One of the new markets the com- pany is launching into this year is aquaculture. "Think of it," Lyons says, "the U.S. imports nearly $1 bil- lion of fish a month. With proper nutrition and husbandry, those fish could easily be raised in this nation." Another initiative is the building of the first-ever rural community biorefinery, a plant that integrates feed, food and fuel production. "This plant goes beyond a typical ethanol facility by utilizing Alltech's existing expertise in the area of solid state fer- mentation," says former Kentucky Governor Ernie Fletcher. In addition to ethanol produc- tion, the biorefinery hopes to house dairy and beef cattle to be branded under the "Kentucky Proud" label. It will also have the capability to pro- duce algae which can, theoretically, produce 5,000 gallons of biofuel per acre, compared to corn which pro- duces 400 gallons per acre. With that type of insight, imagi- nation, innovation and just plain hard work, it's clear Alltech has become an all-star in agribusiness. And, as Lyons wants it, having fun along the way! AM FEATURE STORY/continued from page 65 ALLTECH FEI WORLD EQUESTRIAN GAMES Alltech founder and President Dr. Pearse Lyons recently announced a $10 million sponsor- ship in the world's largest equine sporting event, now named the "Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games." "Late in 2005, FEI announced it would hold its games in Lexing- ton, KY, near our headquarters," Lyons explains. "Like most people, I had never heard of the FEI Games. However, because the equine market has such growth potential for us, I entertained and agree to the idea of Alltech becoming the lead sponsor as a way of supporting the sport and giving a tremendous visibility to our brand." The Games are held every four years --- similar to the Olympics --- and since their inception in 1990, have become as big in the equine world as the Indianapolis 500 is to the racing community. The 2010 Games will be held for the first time outside of Europe and lasts for two weeks. Its TV broad- cast is expected to reach 500 million worldwide viewers and attract nearly 2,000 media representatives. In another blockbusting move, Alltech just announced the creation and sponsorship of the "Alltech Fortnight Festival," a series of musical events to be held throughout the state of Kentucky. "The Festival starts at 7:00 p.m. each evening following the 5:00 p.m. close of the Games," Lyons says. "That way, folks can compete and watch the competition during the day, and be entertained in the evening. All seeing the Alltech brand throughout the two weeks of fun." AM Gerco Schroder (NED) riding Eurocommerce Berlin at the 2006 World Equestrian Games in Aachen, Germany. Photo courtesy of Doug Prather, www.dougprather.com
2008 Marketing Services Guide
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