Paez, an Argentine start-up fashion brand, sold traditional alpargatas, a sleepy shoe category that suddenly woke up when U.S. company TOMS borrowed the traditional alpargata design, covered it with fashionable colors and prints, and tied it to a social cause. Paez's founders were keenly aware of the present and future challenges they faced due to the resources and capabilities of their well-capitalized and marketing-savvy competitor. How could a small brand compete against a company that had captured the hearts and minds of consumers? Which brand positioning concept should Paez choose to best capture consumers' attention and interest and compete against TOMS? How would the choice of positioning affect the rollout of Paez' distribution strategy and its product line strategy?
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Maria Fernanda Miguel joined Harvard Business School in 2013 as Director for the Latin America Research Center (LARC). Her responsibilities include leading research activities for Spanish speaking countries in LATAM, and providing programmatic support to different areas of HBS including admissions, executive education, and immersion programs. Fernanda is based in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
Prior to join Harvard Business School, Fernanda was a Senior Director and Leader for LATAM Business Development at Merck and senior consultant at McKinsey & Co., serving as global Practice Manager for the Business Technology Office Health Care Practice.
Fernanda holds a degree in economics from the Argentine Catholic University, an MBA from Harvard Business School, and a Master of Research from University of Bath.
Fernanda has been very active in non-profit activities, including fund rising at the Fundación Acción Hemato-oncologica – Argentine National Academy of Medicine, and acting as advisor to the Board of Directors of the Hospital Garrahan.
Priscilla Zogbi is the Director of the Latin American Research Center in São Paulo. Priscilla focuses on the School’s work in Brazil, developing research opportunities for faculty and relationships for other educational efforts such as the MBA curricular innovation and immersion programs.
Priscilla has over 17 years’ experience in marketing and product development. Before joining HBS she was a consultant to private equity and venture capital firms interested in the region. Prior to that she was a Global and a Regional Marketing Director at Avon Products, and has held managerial positions in the US and Brazil with Bath & Body Works, General Mills, Johnson & Johnson and Reckitt Benckiser.