FMCG specialist Pollen Consulting Group lauded for growth

17 January 2019 3 min. read

Pollen Consulting Group, a management consulting firm for the fast moving consumer goods sector, has been named one of Australia’s top entrepreneurial companies. “We work with retailers, suppliers, and producers to deliver engagements across the value chain by putting values, not process, first,” explained Paul Eastwood, founder of Pollen Consulting Group. 

Since establishing the business in 2016 after working over a decade for Coriolis Consulting Group, Pollen has gone from strength to strength, and has nestled itself as a leading player in Australia’s US$5 billion consulting industry. The consultancy has as its mission to help raise the bar in the FMCG sector, working with clients on value chain transformations and bottom-line performance improvements. “We work exclusively with a number of select customers that we enjoy working with – our advice and support comes with a deep and intrinsic understanding of their business and the industry they work in,” explained Eastwood.

Among the clients that sit on Pollen Consulting’s roster are food and beverage family-run businesses and larger companies such as Woolworths. As part of a large transformation programme, Woolworths is working with the Sydney-based consulting firm to harness savings in the end-to-end value chain. Harnessing the power of collaboration, underpinned by data insights, is central to the ambition. Value chain collaboration needs to be a core value of each business involved in a wider ecosystem,” Eastwood said.

FMCG specialist Pollen Consulting Group lauded for growthAfter performing an as-is analysis, working with stakeholders across all levels of Woolworths’ businesses, the consultants identified a range of opportunities. These were validated and then prioritised, and after approval from the business, activity plans were developed and rolled-out. Months later, the transition has already made a significant improvements in a number of areas, most importantly how Woolworths and suppliers engage. 

“With facilitation by Pollen, a number of improvement opportunities have been identified that might have otherwise been overlooked or dismissed. Roadblocks and bumps have been managed. And the energy levels and commitment are clear to see in teams,” said Andrew Francis, General Manager at PFD Fresh to Go, one of Woolworths’ suppliers that participated in the programme.

“We’ve gone from being reactive […] to being much more collaborative and much more forward looking with suppliers,” remarked Brad Banducci, chief executive of Woolworths. 

Collaborative approach

According to Eastwood, the collaborative approach applied at the FMCG giant is reflective of the firm’s vision on consulting work. “Rather than a traditional model of trying to fix problems or put out fires I believe consultancies can forge a more sustainable business by helping clients collaborate and look for ways to innovate in their own businesses for future growth and profitability.” Key offerings the firm offers include manufacturing excellence, supply chain management, strategy, operations, asset management and technology adoption. “In our 2 year history we have grown to a team of 16 and delivered 40+ projects in the FMCG sector.” 

The firm’s work for clients has won the firm several accolades in recent months. After being listed as an ‘Top 100 Fast Starter’ by AFR and a ‘Consulting firm to watch’ by a consulting industry magazine, the management consultancy at the start of this year landed a spot in Business News Australia’s first ever ‘Top 100 Young Entrepreneurs’ list.