CSL’s new brand positioning is actually its first—and it comes after more than 100 years in business.
CSL, the parent of biotherapy maker CSL Behring and its and flu vaccine division Seqirus, was originally founded as a government agency in Australia in 1916 to source therapies for the then-isolated island country. But CSL has since come a long way. It was privatized in 1994 and grew organically and by acquisition, such as its $275 million purchase of Novartis’ vaccine business in 2015.
Yet the Australian-based company, with U.S. headquarters in King of Prussia, Pennsylvania, hadn’t ever formally developed a brand and communications strategy. Until now. In an effort that’s taken two years, CSL has established its first brand positioning, created a content strategy, and revamped its website as the “storefront” for stakeholders and to reflect what the company is about.
When Paul Perreault became CEO in 2013, he "recognized the need to raise our visibility, particularly as it relates to recruitment. We’ve doubled our number of employees in five years—we went from 10,000 to over 21,000. We know the No. 1 users of corporate websites are career seekers, so it was really a business imperative to raise our awareness and start driving the brand to support our growth,” said Anthony Farina, chief communications officer at CSL, who joined in 2014.
The global brand strategy, “Driven by Our Promise,” was established 18 months ago, followed by employee effort “Promising Futures.” In January, the updated website debuted, along with new content and communications elements, such as its Vita news and storytelling hub. A visual identity refresh is also coming soon, Farina said.
Another reason CSL is looking to raise its brand profile is for potential partnerships. CSL has established strong relationships in Australia where it is well-known, he said, but it will be seeking partners in the more than 30 other countries where it operates moving forward.
Along with Seqirus flu vaccines, CSL Behring develops therapies in immunology, hematology and rare diseases.