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MARKET-DRIVEN COMPANIES SLOWED LESS BY RECESSION, COOPERS & LYBRAND'S 'TRENDSETTER BAROMETER' FINDS

 MARKET-DRIVEN COMPANIES SLOWED LESS BY RECESSION,
 COOPERS & LYBRAND'S 'TRENDSETTER BAROMETER' FINDS
 NEW YORK, July 15 /PRNewswire/ -- CEOs of the three in five growth companies slowed by the recession found that aggressive marketing worked better than more traditional cost-containment measures to beat the downturn, Coopers & Lybrand's latest "Trendsetter Barometer" survey reveals.
 Among the firms reporting they were only "somewhat" slowed by the recession, 63 percent focused primarily on marketing and 26 percent emphasized cost containment.
 In contrast, firms saying they were "significantly" slowed by the recession were considerably less market-driven as a group: only 46 percent focused primarily on marketing, while 45 percent concentrated on cost containment.
 "These results bear out the effectiveness of an offensive strategy in times of economic uncertainty," says Tom Basilo, a partner with Coopers & Lybrand's Emerging Business Services group. "Generally, companies looking first to build market share fared better than their counterparts who relied predominately on cost-cutting techniques."
 Growth company CEOs used an arsenal of major marketing initiatives to counter the recession, according to the survey. "These executives were determined to use multiple weapons to build market share," says Basilo.
 Recession-impacted CEOs cited the following marketing actions as most effective:
 -- selling to new customers (39 percent);
 -- introducing new products or services (29 percent);
 -- expanding to new markets, including international markets (26 percent); and
 -- making quality improvements (20 percent).
 Other major marketing actions growth company CEOs cited were: aggressive pricing, increased advertising and promotion, new value-added services, enhanced speed of delivery, customization of products/services, and acquisition of key executives.
 Growth company CEOs impacted by the recession credited these major cost-containment actions as most effective:
 -- purchasing smarter/more efficiently, or finding lower-cost suppliers, (24 percent);
 -- reducing personnel or curtailing salary increases (19 percent); and
 -- becoming tougher on credit and receivables (18 percent).
 Respondents said other effective cost-containment initiatives included: eliminating or reducing certain operations, simplifying the production or service process, cutting internal administrative costs, and closing or consolidating plants and locations.
 Coopers & Lybrand's "Trendsetter Barometer" is developed and compiled by the firm's Emerging Business Services group with assistance from the opinion and economic research firm of Business Science International. At each Coopers & Lybrand office, an Emerging Business Services team is available to serve the needs of growing and midsize companies.
 One of the world's leading accounting, tax, and consulting firms, Coopers & Lybrand provides solutions for businesses in a wide range of industries. The firm offers its clients the expertise of more than 17,000 professionals and staff in 100 U.S. offices and more than 67,000 people in 121 countries worldwide.
 -0- 7/15/92 R
 /NOTE TO EDITORS: Coopers & Lybrand's "Trendsetter Barometer" interviewed CEOs of 362 manufacturing and service companies identified in the media as the fastest growing U.S. businesses over the last five years. The surveyed companies range in size from approximately $1 million to $50 million in revenues/sales.
 Graphic art available upon request./
 /CONTACT: Maggie O'Donovan, 212-536-3174, or Clare DeNicola, 212-536-1700, both of Coopers & Lybrand/ CO: Coopers & Lybrand ST: New York IN: FIN SU: ECO


TS-OS -- NY055 -- 9634 07/15/92 14:28 EDT
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Date:Jul 15, 1992
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