Mobil’s defence

in a bid to protect the market share of its acrylic-coated packaging film, Mobil Chemical Canada has launched an unusual branding strategy featuring a comic-strip character, Captain Acrylic.Packaging film is the wrapper used by food manufacturers and others to protect their...

in a bid to protect the market share of its acrylic-coated packaging film, Mobil Chemical Canada has launched an unusual branding strategy featuring a comic-strip character, Captain Acrylic.

Packaging film is the wrapper used by food manufacturers and others to protect their products and keep them fresh.

Last year, the patent protection expired on an acrylic material Mobil developed to coat polyproplene film. Since introducing the acrylic coating about 16 years ago, Mobil has dominated the packaging film market.

But with the patent’s expiry, the market has descended into a free-for-all with aggressive new product entries by such firms as ici of England and Montedison of Italy.

That’s where Captain Acrylic, a comic-strip character drawn in the vein of a Superman or Spiderman, enters the picture.

Patrick Joyner, marketing and sales manager for Mobil’s films division, says Captain Acrylic embodies packaging perfection and will be used as the product spokesperson for Mobil’s acrylic coating.

In the October issues of Canadian Packaging and Food in Canada, the acrylic hero appears in a full-page ad that looks like a page out of a typical comic book.

Captain Acrylic is also being used in a direct-mail campaign to firms that use packaging films.

Ad agency on the account is Toronto’s McManus & Associates. PA