The smallest café in the world makes a big impression

We helped KANU create value and visibility in a new category






As the demand for high-quality coffee rises in Korea, Dong Suh Foods (Dong Suh) has set its sights on expanding its premium instant coffee market—launching a new instant coffee brand for the home and office, and enlisting Interbrand to bring it to market.

Our challenge was to create a name and packaging that would connect with young, lifestyle-conscious consumers. Analyzing key market trends for competitor brands like Starbuck VIA, Interbrand selected “convenience,” “freshness” and “coffee bean aroma” as the keywords to consider in developing the new product’s name. At the client’s request, we also generated a list of names that aligned with Dong Suh’s Maxim brand, the no. 1 instant coffee brand in Korea.

Interbrand and Dong Suh finally arrived at the name “KANU.” Pronounced like “canoe,” the moniker means new café /coffee, and implies a sense of calming leisure.

In designing the product’s packaging, Interbrand combined elements of simplicity and luxuriousness to appeal to a youthful, style-savvy audience. Advertising strategy to promote KANU included teaser TV ads and pop-up stores based on the concept of “the smallest café in the world,” reinforcing KANU’s positioning as a trendy coffee product.