"Salesforce helps us be at the right place, at the right time, and at the right price."

—Yves Gauguier

Salesforce helps Bel reach its growth targets

Even the company that’s been behind some of the world’s most popular foods since 1865 has to adapt its business from time to time. Bel Group—maker of The Laughing Cow®, Mini Babybel®, Kiri®, Leerdammer® and Boursin® cheeses—is faced with demanding customers with more points of contact, and a global economic situation that requires new levels of responsiveness. "We need to be in the right place, at the right time, and at the right price for everyone," says Yves Gauguier, CIO. "Salesforce helps us do that."

Bel selected Salesforce when it wanted a single CRM system to support sales and marketing teams across in 120 countries. Gauguier explains, "The solution had to be easy for teams in all countries to adopt—whether in France, Germany, Belgium or any of our less mature markets."

With Salesforce, account leaders can create promotional campaigns and organise events showcasing Bel products while working in the field. Sales managers can easily provide reps with the information they need to coordinate with outlets to implement the initiatives. Gauguier says, "We customised Salesforce to meet our needs in negotiation, sales promotion, and managing the multilingual aspect of our business. We’re in a better position to adapt to developments in our market."

Sales teams were most enthusiastic about the collaborative aspects of Salesforce. "During the trial and training stages, our reps were introduced to Chatter and started having fun with it," reports Gauguier. "They quickly realised that Chatter created cohesion and a good team dynamic." Bel had been using a different collaborative tool that was eventually withdrawn in favor of Chatter—proof of the eagerness with which Salesforce was embraced.

Reaching a billion customers

Bel has an aggressive expansion strategy, which calls for reaching one billion customers by 2020. Salesforce is integral to that strategy—supporting the company by helping it be more agile increase responsiveness. "Our aim is to be in a position to respond more quickly to our markets and our sales outlets, notably by introducing joint initiatives with our distributors," says Gauguier. "We’re planning to triple our business, and Salesforce should help us achieve this."