Cochlear Using the physical environment as a marketing tool

Geyer worked with Cochlear Limited, one of Australia's leading innovative businesses, to create a property strategy which identified how their future accommodation could give them a competitive advantage in the market. The principles uncovered in the property strategy led to the selection and development of their new Sydney headquarters located at Macquarie University.


The property strategy identified the benefits to Cochlear of locating their headquarters on the University’s campus to take advantage of the physical proximity to the University and Macquarie University Hospital. This positioning has created a strategic relationship between Cochlear – developers of hearing aids, the University – access to research, and the hospital – access to patients.


Geyer’s Strategic Brief outlined the following areas:

_Overarching business aspirations, culture and brand objectives

_Leveraging anchor tenant status and communicating brand though the location

_Principles to elevate partnering and community involvement in the accommodation.


The early identification of the site allowed Geyer to work in collaboration with the base building architect Toland Architectural Design Partners to modify the building design incorporating Cochlear’s specific functional requirements as well as to create a building that communicated the Cochlear brand and desired culture.


An important part of Cochlear’s marketing involves the invitation of surgeons and other medical professionals to their facilities to observe their R&D, manufacturing and shipping processes, because it is these professionals who must understand, trust and ultimately advise patients on the use of these hearing solutions. This requirement drove the need for spaces within the Cochlear fitout to accommodate presentation and assembly areas for large groups. Surgeons, docents and recipients tour the facility to observe the company’s R&D and manufacturing (which occurs by hand in a clean room environment), warehouse and shipping facilities.


Importantly, these tours could not conflict with product being transported from the clean room manufacturing areas to the warehouse and loading docks.  Through an integrated and collaborative design process between Cochlear, Geyer and the base building architects, it was agreed that to address this, the core of the building would be repositioned and a separate lift lobby for each activity would be incorporated.  


It was also agreed that portions of the curtain wall would be made more transparent to provide an insight into the Cochlear organisation, providing the opportunity for Cochlear to use the building as a billboard for the company.  The resulting solution provides greater visibility for Cochlear on the Macquarie University campus.


Geyer’s property strategy also helped Cochlear identify and develop their new Nordic Headquarters in Sweden.