Mate in Box: experiences on the impacts of Covid-19 on a Lean Startup

Mariana Aparecida Euflausino, Bianca Jupiara Fortes Schardong, Olga Maria Coutinho Pépece


Objective of the study: This case-study aimed to promote the analysis and discussion among students in relation to the ability of a start-up to deal with the crisis of the Covid-19 pandemic, creating opportunities amid the risks.

Methodology / approach: Primary data were provided by one of the start-up founders, who granted an interview during 2020. As secondary sources, information was obtained from the company’s social media and news websites, as well as a review of relevant literature.

Originality / relevance: The main reflection revolves around the dilemma: withdraw or expand investments in marketing during moments of crisis? This dilemma, tackled by Mate in Box, is likely similar to the reality of many other businesses.

Main results: When dealing with their marketing strategies, companies must consider adapting them to their objective and current reality. Mate in Box increased its marketing investments, which resulted in increased profitability and brand consolidation. This also demonstrates how a good marketing plan must adapt to the business’s crisis management proposal.

Theoretical / methodological contributions: The teaching notes pose questions for classroom use (based on the literature and on the company’s actual facts), promoting decision-making exercises regarding marketing strategy in the face of crises.

Social / management contributions: This case-study contributes to the perception that, in moments of crisis, marketing needs to be considered as a tool for the sustainability of the business and in the search for profits and viability, and not as a cost vector. This study stimulates academics and managers to reflect upon how to transform risks into opportunities.


Marketing Strategy; Marketing Environments; Covid-19 Crisis; Consumption of yerba mate.


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