Careers: What's it really like inside - Ribena

- Ribena has recently launched an ad campaign. How does the team come up with ideas?

We are a young, dynamic, globally diverse team, and we challenge ourselves to constantly evolve this classic British brand.

- What is the biggest challenge that you face?

The continual re-invention of a brand that is so deeply ingrained with British heritage, to ensure its relevance to our consumers.

Almost everyone in the UK has a fond experience of Ribena, so managing consumers' affection for it while changing world trends is a real balancing act. First and foremost, it is vital to make sure that the brand continues to delight consumers.

- What are the perks of the job?

As much delicious Ribena as we can drink! We are also able to visit the blackcurrant farms across the UK during their harvests.

- Describe the marketing team in three words.

Fun, feisty and female.

- Does the marketing team socialise outside office hours?

Yes - it is really important to have a bit of fun outside the office. Many of us are commuters and there is a pub on the way to the railway station that we often drop into before catching our trains home.

- What are the opportunities for career progression?

Ribena is part of GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), so there are plenty of opportunities, not only to move within the nutritional healthcare division to Lucozade or Horlicks, but also to other well-known consumer healthcare brands, such as Aquafresh or Panadol, or to work in the pharmaceutical division.

- What about the salary and benefits?

GSK offers competitive salaries and a generous benefits package.

- Is there a dress code?

No, but it helps if you like purple.

- What are the hours like?

As a group, we like to run at a fast pace. The hours are ever-changing. Sometimes there are late nights, and other times we like to get out and enjoy the great British outdoors.

- Are there any downsides?

As one brand in such a big company, sometimes we feel like a little fish in a big, international pond.

- Is there anything interesting about the inside of your office?

We have recently created 'the Ribena hub' - an innovative space where marketing, sales, manufacturing and research and development come together to brainstorm aspects of the brand's future, work as a team and drive the growth of Ribena.

- Is there anything else readers may find interesting about working for Ribena?

We work in partnership with The Wildlife Trusts, and have created a joint conservation plan with our growers to make sure that the farms we source our blackcurrants from are as wildlife-friendly as possible. Last year, we provided 2000 bird boxes to support the local bird population. We also became the first drinks company to produce bottles made from 100% recycled materials.


- GSK Nutritional Healthcare, which manufactures Ribena, Horlicks and Lucozade, employs about 800 people in the UK, of whom 12 are Ribena marketers.

- Ribena is the UK's number-one juice drink, according to Nielsen Scantrack data for August 2007.

- Andrew Witty has just taken over as chief executive of GSK; Ellen Hedges is Ribena's category director.

- Ribena is based at GSK House, Brentford, Middlesex TW8 9GS.


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