Roots honoured as one of Canada’s top marketers
Monday, 18 August 2008
As Roots celebrates its 35th anniversary, the brand attracts growing recognition as one of the top iconic names in Canadian business

TORONTO - In a salute to the enduring success and influence of Roots, the respected Marketing magazine selected the company as one of the top 10 marketing icons in Canada of the past 100 years. The spotlight on Co-Founders Michael Budman and Don Green and their formidable achievements is part of a special issue of Marketing that came out today, coincidentally within days of the 35th anniversary of Roots.

In the issue (dated August 25, 2008), the editors of Marketing say they used one main criterion to arrive at the 10 companies selected – that the leaders of each business were “game changers, so influential that they changed their industries’ rules.”

Marketing, which refers to Roots as “a global retail icon’ pays tribute to the two co-founders for their creativity and for the evolution of the brand. “Michael Budman and Don Green have had a huge role in defining Canadian style on both the domestic and world stages,” writes Marketing journalist Matt Semansky. “With a deft combination of authenticity and celebrity, Budman and Green have turned their passion into a nation-defining brand.”

This latest media recognition follows a slew of recent praise for Roots from various sources. In the newly released book, Ikonica: A Field Guide to Canada’s Brandscape, Roots figures prominently. In the chapter: Movers and Shapers, the authors state: “While Roots is continuously reinventing itself (negative heel shoes are a distant memory) based on its keen cultural radar, the business hews consistently to its core values and lifestyle orientation.”

Indeed, these core values count for a lot at Roots. Auspiciously, the values that have governed the company since its founding – a commitment to active, healthy living, respect for the environment, support for the arts, strong community spirit and a passion for Canada – are even more popular and relevant today than they were back in 1973.

This year in early June, Interbrand published a study entitled Competing in the Global Brand Economy: Best Canadian Brands 2008. Roots was among the country’s leading companies profiled in the report. “No company has done a better job at incorporating the essence of Canada’s natural landscape into its brand,” the report said. “Ensuring that each new product being launched would not appear out of context in Algonquin Park, the birthplace of the Roots vision, is one example of its commitment to the brand.”

Last year, Brand Finance Canada published an extensive study of the country’s top companies. Entitled Canada’s Most Valuable Brands 2007, the results attracted prominent media coverage. Among the findings, Roots was ranked the top brand in the retail sector and fourth overall.

It all adds up to an impressive 35 years of achievement and innovation. More impressive is that the two guys who began it all in 1973 are the same two who every day in 2008 are hard at work at the helm, continuing to forge ahead, building the future of Roots.


For more information, please contact:
Robert Sarner
Director of Communication and Public Affairs
Roots Canada
Tel: 416-781-3574, ext. 4280
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