You can now find the University's latest news, events and blogs at

Students’ coursework impresses multinational

Marketing prowess: (l-r) Dani, Greg and Matt

Three marketing students at Portsmouth Business School managed to pull off a marketing coup of their own when they sent their university project to a major international company.

The trio’s marketing plan for a Brazilian launch of celebrity hair salon brand Jamie Stevens Hair Ltd and Matrix Hair Care hair products so impressed L’Oreal, which owns Matrix, that their plan might now be put into action.

Greg Copley, 23, Dani Ghibomean, 24, and Matt Cook, 22, all graduated with BA (Hons) in Marketing from the University of Portsmouth this year. And judging by the results of their final year project, it is clear they know more than a thing or two about their subject.

Greg, from Buckinghamshire, said: “It was great to receive the email from L’Oreal because we knew that if this was a real business pitch that it would have been likely that we would have received the key investment and backing of one of the largest hair product companies in the world.

“Also, it was great to know that the report managed to keep the attention of the company’s managing director throughout. The report was 27,000 words long and would have taken him hours to read.”

The marketing plan devised by the students was part of a global marketing unit graded entirely on coursework. Working in small groups, students had to design a marketing plan to take an existing business to a new global market.

Greg said: “We decided to approach celebrity hairdresser Jamie Stevens, who has salons in Somerset and London, and ask if we could work with him on marketing his salon and the Matrix Hair Care products he uses as a concept.

“Our tutor gave us the countries Brazil and Czech Republic to choose between. Ultimately, we had to analyse each country to see which one we could hypothetically expand into.

“We did lots of research and a full risk analysis. All the figures and research pointed to Brazil so we decided to go with it. We developed a full marketing plan, including a business entry strategy across a five-year plan. The financial projections were in the region of £1m profit across five years.”

Matrix Hair Care is owned by global cosmetics giant L’Oreal, but until the students submitted their marketing plan, the company had no plans to launch their products in Brazil.

Greg said: “Jamie is a celebrity hairdresser and he does the hair for X-Factor and other television shows. He is one of the most in-demand hairdressers around the world.  Not only do his salons use Matrix Hair Care products, but he is also global ambassador for the products and he travels the world sharing his creativity and techniques with stylists eager to expand their knowledge.

“I asked him if he would pass on our report the MD of Matrix and take a look at it and let me know if this was for real, would Matrix invest.

“He reviewed it and sent an email back saying Matrix would seriously consider this as a viable business opportunity for them to invest in.”

Hugo Boisvert, general manager of Matrix for L’Oreal UK, said: “I have been impressed by the overall analysis of the situation. Their marketing plan was approached from different angles: Financials, marketing, country’s reality, SWOT of the company, competition… the same way we would have done it in the real world.

“Having worked for L’Oreal for the last ten years in Latin America, Asia and Europe, I can say the hypotheses brought forward make sense and entering Brazil with a certain strategy could be successful and profitable and Matrix would be interested in partnering with Jamie Stevens to launch this salon brand concept in Brazil.

“I congratulate the students on their great work analysing this business adventure opportunity.”

Since graduating, Greg has secured a job as marketing manager for software education for Europe, the Middle East and Africa with Hewlett Packard. Matt is working for an IT Services Provider, and Dani is working for a Digital Marketing Company.

UoP News © 2019 All Rights Reserved