(Blog, Harri Tuomaala, 10 December 2015) "Strength through collaboration" is a principle that is highly applicable also in marketing communication. When two Finnish companies decided to work together to bring a new kind of fuel to the Finnish market, common factors were easy to find: high quality, Finnishness, sustainability and continuous actions to reduce CO2 emissions.
St1's goal is to reduce, litre by litre, the share of fossil fuels sold by the company. For the gasoline market, we offer our own renewable ethanol fuel produced from waste, whereas the low emission renewable diesel produced by UPM from crude tall oil is a perfect fit for the diesel market.
I have been involved in marketing for a long time, and for me, it is great to see that the marketing of fuels in Finland is evolving more and more towards product branding. Collaborating with UPM in launching UPM BioVerno for consumers as part of St1's Diesel Plus product this year was definitely one of the highlights of my career.
Together with UPM, we created a new fuel, a story for it and a marketing communication plan for the launch. This was the birth of a new product: Diesel Plus — Powered by UPM BioVerno. The origin of UPM BioVerno's story is the same as the origin of the product itself — the Finnish forest. This is combined with the pure power of high-quality St1 Diesel Plus.
After thorough product testing, in May 2015, St1 started to market and deliver Diesel Plus including UPM BioVerno renewable diesel component for the first time in Finland.
Diesel Plus - Powered by UPM BioVerno
For St1, UPM BioVerno is a very attractive diesel component, as it has been developed and produced in Finland. Low emission fuels produced from Finnish raw materials create new jobs and reduce the need for imported fuels.
The high-quality wood-based UPM BioVerno is ideal for the continuously developing diesel vehicle fleet requiring high quality fuels. Combined with St1's premium Diesel Plus, the fuel has a very high cetane number (>60), ensuring perfect ignition and maximum engine performance. Every litre of Diesel Plus - Powered by UPM BioVerno also helps drivers to reduce fossil CO2 emissions. It's genuinely pure power from the Finnish forest.
Finnishness is an asset
Studies show that Finnishness is highly valued by our own as well as UPM's customers when making buying decisions. The new St1 Diesel Plus has received a positive response from the market, which confirms that there is a clear demand for high-quality diesel products in the Finnish market. More and more Finnish diesel drivers have found their way to St1's petrol stations and gladly recommend filling up with Diesel Plus - Powered by UPM BioVerno. We have received positive feedback about the fact that our product contains Finnish renewable diesel and that we are collaborating with UPM.
The new fuel was tested thoroughly in advance, and there have not been any problems with it. It has been important for us, however, to emphasise that St1 Diesel Plus - Powered by UPM BioVerno works with all diesel engines. This has made it clear for the consumer that the new fuel can be used in their own diesel car.
As winter approaches, it's good to bear in mind that St1 Diesel Plus is an excellent choice during the winter months as well. The product is well-suited for cold driving conditions, ensuring peace of mind for our customers while driving.
Our collaboration with UPM has been highly professional and we are very pleased with the results. Working together towards common goals - and having fun along the way - really shows in the results. The story of Diesel Plus - Powered by UPM BioVerno has drawn a lot of interest and a great many tanks have been filled with the new fuel.
As part of our collaboration, we arranged a media visit to the UPM Lappeenranta Biorefinery. Transportation to the site was fuelled by Diesel Plus - Powered by UPM BioVerno. The picture shows a pitstop at the club house close to the UPM Kaukas mill site.
The journey continues together
St1 and UPM continue their collaboration also in the future. For example, UPM BioVerno is now being tested in heavy duty vehicles by the Helsinki region bus services. The testing is scheduled to last a minimum of one year, during which St1 will deliver Diesel Plus for the buses and provide a refill point.
UPM BioVerno will be tested as part of St1 Diesel Plus by the Helsinki Region Transport (HSL) in their bus traffic. HSL, VTT, Volvo and the transport company Transdev Finland also participated in the testing.