Predator: Start-up branding in a highly competitive market

March 18, 2021

To bring entrepreneurship education to a higher level, IXA is developing case studies about inspiring entrepreneurs.

Each case features a successful company from the Amsterdam region. The new case study “Predator” provides insight into how customers perceive brands and the roles that a brand can play in their everyday lives.

The Case

Because of the rise (and fall) of start-ups there is a need for specialization in branding for start-ups: both academics and students study the role of branding in the success and failure of start-ups. The important decisions in branding should be made at the start: choice of brand elements, like brand name, logo and slogan, the brand essence and its brand positioning. On the other hand, 60% of all startups fail because of a lack of differentiation. Thus, start-ups could really benefit from scientific knowledge of branding in their initial phase. However, many start-ups seem not to use the body of knowledge in the creation of success.

Objectives of the case study

The case study of the Amsterdam based start-up Predator aims at providing insights and learnings. The Predator company positions itself as a social enterprise. The founders are ambitious entrepreneurs and got their inspiration from their visits in Africa. Not only were they inspired by the nutritious and healthy ingredients that the jungle provides. These ingredients could be used to develop the first whole natural endurance drink, a healthy alternative for the energy drinks that young adults are using in abundance, containing sugar and caffeine.


Brands are often considered to be organizations’ most valuable assets, where the origin of this value resides in the mind of the customer. Start-ups have the unique opportunity to adjust and experiment with their brand, since the brand is not strongly established in the customer’s mind (yet). It provides the organization with a clear sense of direction, and it provides potential clients with a better view of how the organization’s offering can truly benefit them. Many start-ups are “product focused” in the early stages of their existence, whereas they could benefit from adding “client focus”. This case study provides insight into how customers perceive brands and the roles that a brand can play in their everyday lives. The case study focuses on the importance of brands, brand associations, target population segmentation, value proposition, brand positioning, brand building strategies and the leveraging of brand value.

Click here for more info about the case study.

The case study will address which fundamental branding ideas apply to the context of start-ups as well. And which are different? How? Why? Which topics are more (or less) important for start-up companies in an early stage of development? We wish you a good read and are open for questions and suggestions: Ileen Bouw ( and Jorge Labadie (

More case studies

The case studies developed by IXA can be used at any level and are especially suitable for late Bachelor and Master level entrepreneurship courses, and for executive education. The cases consist of a written case and an introduction video. Teaching notes are available upon request and for teachers only.

Entrepreneurship Cases