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Hypermarkets

Hypermarkets

Hypermarkets are huge superstores. Hypermarkets have been very successful in Europe and other world markets. Many retailers now operate formats such as hypermarkets that perform many wholesale functions. In return, many large wholesalers are setting up their own retailing operations. Another reason why it is a challenge for hypermarkets in certain areas is because of location.

In western countries such as India hypermarkets would have to be located within cities opposed to the outskirts of urban areas which would create a problem of location. “People have cars but it’s a nightmare driving back and forth,” Padmanabhan says, “So if you’re looking at opening a big footprint store in a city you have a lot of constraints, apart from availability of space and location, regulation and things like that” (Padmanabhan, 2010). Wal-Mart expected the Korean consumers to drive to its stores for price shopping as the American consumers do. However, this location strategy did not match well with the Korean consumers’ lifestyle and shopping habits.

As the “youdecide” stated adapting to the culture of another area is a reason why the hypermarkets are not common in some places.  In North America where consumers want low price, Wal-Mart’s low price offering was matched with customers’ definition of value. Wal-Mart has retreated from Korea and Germany. This is because Wal-Mart needed to localize its products and services to foreign market’s tastes and preferences.

Competitive advantages foreign retailer enjoy in Asian Markets

The key is the ability to adapt to overseas market conditions largely determines success of international operations of foreign retailers such as Wal-Mart and Carrefour.  Wal-Mart’s main competitive advantage has been its ability to offer the most competitive price to consumers by having a cost efficient operating system that ensures low costs. Another advantage is their spending power; they are able to penetrate the Asian market through small acquisitions or joint venture arrangement because of this. Being the first U.S. retailer in many of these markets will prove to be a meaningful competitive advantage during the next decade. By the time most rivals start to enter these markets, Wal-Mart and/or Carrefour should have an well-established presence, and a well-developed understanding of local customs and shopping tendencies.

Competitive advantages of local retailers

Local competitors have a very good competitive advantage they were their first. This makes them known by the public, adjusted to the culture and has relationship with distribution channels. In terms of location; major Korean retailers had already located their stores in key commercial areas and developed their distribution networks to optimize the merchandising and the retailing operations prior entry of foreign markets.  In terms of marketing, it is critical that the stores are built in lucrative locations such as residential and key commercial areas with high levels of consumer traffic. However, it appeared the foreign late-comers such as Wal-Mart or Carrefour was not able to capture strategically important retail location.

 

 

Works Cited

 

Gereffi, G. (2007). Wal-Mart in China. Retrieved April 4, 2011, from Harvard Edu: http://www.hcs.harvard.edu/~hapr/winter07_gov/gereffi.pdf

Padmanabhan, P. (2010). India retail: Foreign chains eye the potential, but will they succeed? Retrieved April 4, 2011, from Indead Knowledge edu: http://knowledge.insead.edu/contents/paddy.cfm

 

 

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Scenario 1

Scenario 1

VP of operations charged us to develop a strategy for entering this new beverage into the global market.  You need to take this task back to your team, provide them with the product details, and get them started as quickly as possible because they only have one week to develop a strategy.

 

What communication channel will you use?  Staff meeting

Why is this channel the best choice in this situation?

Speed, ideas, creativity and group think

What communication channel will you use to convey your strategy to the VP of operations?

Face to face presentation/conversation

Why is this channel the best choice in this situation?

Communicating Up requires personal interactions with minimal distractions

 

Scenario 2

You are the manager of a large travel agency.  You manage 11 employees.  This morning, one of your employees notifies you that the company login name and password no longer work for a computer application used by all company employees.  You quickly contact the offsite IT department responsible for the upkeep of that computer application to find out why the login information is no longer working.  You discover that the login name and password have expired.  IT provides you with a new login name and password.

What communication channel do you use to contact the IT department?

Phone call

Why is this channel the best choice in this situation?

Speed and informal

What communication channel will you use to inform your employees about what happened and provide them the new login name and password?

Voice mail

Why is this channel the best choice in this situation?

Is information based and really no interaction required.

Scenario 3

You are the owner of a small editing company.  You have 10 employees working for you.  Business has been slow and the bills are piling up. You have done just about everything you can to cut costs but you are still unable to pay the bills.  You do not want to close the business.  You have done some number crunching and you found that by reducing your workforce from 10 to 6 you can pay your bills and remain profitable.

What communication channel do you use to inform your employees about the reduction of workforce?

Group Meeting

Why is this channel the best choice in this situation?

Everyone hears the message the same way and can ask questions

What communication channel do you use to inform the affected employees that they are being let go?

One on one private meetings

Why is this channel the best choice in this situation?

Allows personal, interpersonal understanding and interaction.

 

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Market Equilibrating Process

Market Equilibrating Process

            The market equilibrating process is determined by supply and demand.  The market is at equilibrium when the quantity demanded equals the quantity supplied.  The equilibrium price and equilibrium quantity price fall at the intersection of the supply and demand curve of a product.  If the demand increases, then the equilibrium price and quantity will increase.  If demand decreases, then the equilibrium price and quantity will decrease.  An increase in supply will increase the equilibrium quantity but reduce the equilibrium price.  A decrease in supply results in an increase in equilibrium price but a reduction in the equilibrium quantity.  This concept is easier to grasp when looking at the shifts graphically side by side below.

(McConnell, Brue, & Flynn, 2009)

After researching the equilibrating process, a clearer definition of the process:  “Discrepancies between amounts demanded and supplied lead to changes in price which reduce the discrepancy and, plausibly, equilibrate the market” (Leijonhufvud, 2009-11-01).  When the price is raised higher than the equilibrium price then a surplus occurs.  The opposite happens when the price is lowered below equilibrium, a shortage occurs.  Surplus’ drive prices down to encourage consumer to purchase the product while shortages drive prices back up to equilibrium.  The market equilibrating process happens when there is competition between buyers and sellers.  “At the equilibrium price and quantity in competitive markets, marginal benefit equals marginal cost, maximum willingness to pay equals minimum acceptable price, and the total of consumer surplus and producer surplus is maximized” (McConnell, Brue, & Flynn, 2009).

There was a time when the price of gasoline was so low that it was a complete joy to fill up the tank of a large SUV.  Originally, gassing up a full sized Chevy Tahoe was about $50 per fill up.  After Hurricane’s Katrina and Rita, the price of gas skyrocketed and increased the cost of the fill up price from $50 to a little bit over $75 per fill up.  Soon after the price increased and assessing the amount of fuel required operating the average family, there were many families who realized there had to be a change made.  Many families downgraded from the larger SUV to a small family SUV and were excited at the amount of funds that were saved with this change.

Today the excitement of inexpensive gas for any vehicle is only a faint memory that will likely never resurface itself again.  Because oil is a natural resource, the supply or quantity of it may completely be diminished one day.  Although many countries have seen higher gasoline prices for quite some time, the high prices in the recent few years have taken the United States by surprise and dug deep into the pocket books of many Americans who have become accustomed to the convenience of gas guzzling vehicles.  With multiple factors at play in determining the price of oil, the market equilibrium prices are constantly fluxing.

Many Americans would agree that the ever-growing price of gasoline is affecting the bottom line of their family budgets.  This is a part of life and something that will be dealt with; actually, we are just catching up to what other countries have experienced for decades before us.

 

 

 

REFERENCES

 

Leijonhufvud, A. (2009-11-01). Limits to the Equilibrating Capabilities of Market Systems. Limits to the equilibrating capabilities of market systems, 173-182.

McConnell, C. R., Brue, S. L., & Flynn, S. M. (2009). Economics: Principles, Problems, Policies, 18e. New York: McGraw-Hill Company.

 

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Merger Management

RE:  Merger Management Behavior

InterClean Inc. is aggressively seeking to achieve domestic market dominance within the sanitation industry.  One of the opportunities to propel the organization closer to this goal would be the acquisition of its main competitor EnviroTech.  Acquiring EnviroTech will poise the organization to fully reach its sales goals and increase profitability by at least forty percent.  This acquisition and successful merger will propel InterClean to provide top-level customer service as well as exploring new service solutions that comply with governmental regulations.  As managers within this organization, there is a need to ensure there is adequate preparation to adapt adequately to the changes that are ahead for the organization.  Although this is a terrific opportunity for both organizations, there will be a bit of apprehension and some employees may feel a bit uncomfortable about the current atmosphere within the organization.  Management should definitely take the opportunity to ensure everyone that all vital information will be passed on to each employee.  Each manager should understand the importance of exhibiting exemplary management behavior in relation to creating a diverse work environment, employment laws, and productivity for the continued success of the new organization.

The merger between InterClean and EnviroTech has allowed the new organization to become a more diverse company.  As ambassadors of change, we must celebrate diversity appreciating and valuing differences.  The success of this merger is dependent on each of the first level manager’s ability to create and maintain a diverse environment.  Management activities should align with current employment law and should keep in consideration how their behavior affects the productivity of each employee.  A diverse work environment is no longer based on race; it is considering all facets of life.  This includes such point of views from senior employees, single parents, persons who speak a second language, or people with special needs.  Research states a diverse work environment is one that employs people from a wide range of backgrounds and experiences.  (Diversity Management 2010)  Having this range of experience will ensure a fresh scope of ideas within the new organization and will reflect the diversity amongst its customers.  Therefore, as leaders it is essential that the organization capitalize on this diversity and remain open and empathetic of the corporate cultural differences of the former EnviroTech employees who are learning to assimilate into the culture of InterClean.  This includes valuing various races, ethnic groups, culture, languages, religions, sexual orientations, levels of physical abilities, and family structure of all employees.  (Cascio 2006)

When blending the organizations InterClean/EnviroTech will see changes in staffing, retention, development, and change management.  It is important that all management decisions be in alignment with employment laws.  When blending the employees of both organizations, there may be certain positions that are overstaffed and that employees may need to be trained for new positions or responsibilities.  As the company moves forward with the merger, there will be a full evaluation of each employee by the Human Resources Department.  As a management, team there must be consistent interactions with each employee.  The management team has to acknowledge that the possibility of lay-offs and reorganization and employees will be uncertain about their futures and will need management to show behavior that is not fearful of the changing environment.  The management team must also continue to encourage its employees to develop their skills and expand their knowledge base to encourage company retention.  Some of the legal considerations the management team should be aware of in order to ensure fairness and reduce risk during any potential resource downsizing efforts:
1. Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 – as amended, prohibits discriminatory employment practices, based on race, color, religion, sex, or nationality of employees or applicant.
2. The Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA) – as amended, protects employees and applicants 40 years of age and older from discrimination based on age.
3. The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) – as amended, protects employment practices, based on qualified disabilities of employees or applicant.
For clarification of any uncertainties on the interpretation of any of these laws, please be sure to contact Human Resources for clarifications and/or visit the www.eeoc.gov for additional information.

Acquisition brings change, change brings diversity, and diversity is to be celebrated.  In times of change, learners inherit the Earth, while the learned find themselves beautifully equipped to deal with a world that no longer exists.  If we are to achieve a richer culture, rich in contrasting values, we must recognize the whole gamut of human potentialities, and so weave a less arbitrary social fabric, one in which each diverse human gift will find a fitting place.  (Mead 2006)
Sincerely,

Erica N. Davis

 

CITATIONS

Cascio, W. (2006).  Managing human resources: Diversity at Work
(Seventh Ed.)  New York: McGraw-Hill

Mead, M. (2006).  Diversity Quotes, Quotations, Sayings, and Wisdom Quotes.

(J. Lewis, Producer) Retrieved November 16, 2010, from  http://www.pioneersofchange.net

Creating a Diverse Work Environment.  Diversity Management Strategies.  Retrieved  November 16, 2010 from Creating a Diverse Work Environment.  Diversity Management Strategies

 

 

 

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Marketing is the answer

Abstract

Marketing is the answer to the success of any business.  Having knowledge of your competitors marketing strategy as well as knowing which group of consumers you are trying to appease will give you the advantage of making a smart move allowing your business to flourish.  Marketing division is the launch of any business to see where they are now and to figure out what they need to do next to succeed in their marketing target.  Comprehending advertising division is the start of a successful business.

 

 

Bulletproof Vest Marketing

Marketing is crucial for humanity to operate proficiently; it affects buyers in some shape form or fashion.  There is a copious amount of exploration that takes part in marketing.  In order for it to be a success, it is imperative that your marketing team targets the correct population as well as get them to notice what product you are offering.  There are many different forms of marketing divisions, and each has a section as to whom they are to pitch their marketing idea to.

Definition of the Division Bases

Advertising division is a wide theory of how the performance of an industry should be executed globally.  The fundamental expression refers to further dividing a market along some cohesion, connection, or association.  Advertising division is an intangible instrument to help attain the focus and awareness on advertising oomph and vigor to then reach more of an aggressive gain within a section.  In turn, all advertising approach is the attentiveness of advertising power.

One type of division that pertains to the advertising of bulletproof vests is demographic division.  Demographic division concentrates on education level, financial wealth, sexual category, age, revenue and amongst other categories.

Description of Each of the Target Markets

Bulletproof vests in a lifestyle division is shaped by revenue, and living lifestyle. The target in this form of division is military and law enforcement since they are the ones whose lives revolve around protection.  This form of division has always been a marketing strategy, considering every product targets different groups of people.

Another type of division is psychographic, this relates to the buyers social class, lifestyle, and or personality.  Typically the best way to get buyers outlook are painless statements, maybe one or two do you agree or not agree. For bulletproof vests studies are gathered by both feedback form and assessments, on Safariland.com, after the merchandise has been purchased, they provide you an optional questionnaire. The military does their research by fielding the equipment as well as receiving feedback from those that are wearing the gear at all times.  Feedback forms are frequently handed out at police academies and police departments concerning the effectiveness of the vests.  The target market that this division applies to would be any department whose daily lifestyle as a whole interacts with weapons on a day-to-day basis.

Analysis of Two Competitors and their Positioning

The two participants that I have picked are Safariland.com and SafeGuardClothing.com; they both have a unique style to selling their merchandise.  Safariland.com marketing slogan is “Together, We Save Lives”, and they will only sale new as well as brand name items.  Their marketing targets the audience who is in a field of work that requires one to wear bulletproof vests.  SafeGuardClothing.com on the other hand markets both fresh and second-hand products and aims more on a lifestyle division since they are targeting buyers by way of financial situation.  Their slogan is “why pay more, when you can pay less and get the same product”.

Analysis of Competitive Advantages

The reward on each of the competitor’s merchandise is that, Safariland.com has a superior service contract on their new manufactured goods and a merchandise assurance.  As well as many different brand name items to choose from, SafeGuardClothing.com has a restricted service contract both the new and used goods, and do not carry as many brand name items, yet their prices are much affordable than that of his competitor.

If I had a company that sold bulletproof vests, not only would I combine both brand names, comparable to Safariland.com, but I would also sell second-hand brand name items at lower prices, comparable to SafeGuardClothing.com.  The target market for the business would be lifestyle division, with attentiveness on both revenue, and living lifestyle.  Also, lifestyle division, with a focus largely to those whose jobs associate them with weaponry.  For wages target, advertising the used vests with an improved service contract will permit people to obtain the goods with calm about themselves.  Furthermore, taking second-hand bulletproof vests and trading them for money to add to the used supply, will benefit the market and those who do not utilize the use of the vest any longer.  What would also help with the marketing of the product would be to give a demonstration to those organizations whose lifestyle requires them to wear the product.  By doing this you would also ensure the potential buyer the quality of the product at a lower price.

Development of Value Proposition and Positioning Statement

Position statement for bulletproof vests would require the buying and selling of second-hand and fresh vests to include brand name items.  A good slogan that would be a good marketing pitch is, “Protect Lives, while Saving Money”.  This slogan is to attract potential buyers’ attention and at least want them inquire about the product or at least remember what the company is about.  When a consumer retains information about your company, they have the tendency to become a returning customer as well as recommend you to their friends and associates.  A successful business begins with achieving the approval and devotion of the buyers.  Always begin with a marketing pitch that the buyer will never forget.   Cost plan as well as adequate marketing is made up of various things to become a flourishing company

Conclusion

In general, advertising division is a key role player in the accomplishment of an industry.  Division brings many different inconsistencies of civilization these days and permits a company to see where their product or service is at compared to their competitors in each variable and where figure out what audience to target for their goods.

References

Martin, Gillian. (2001). The Importance Of Marketing Division. Retrieved from http://ehis.ebscohost.com.proxy.cecybrary.com/eds/pdfviewer/pdfviewer?sid=f461f5c8-9cfe-43c2-b684-6cba6d8f221a%40sessionmgr112&vid=6&hid=4

Schweizer III, Bert. (2006). First Form A Plan. Retrieved from http://ehis.ebscohost.com.proxy.cecybrary.com/eds/detail?sid=c02eca15-43f0-4722-80ec-ae761c8a94e1%40sessionmgr11&vid=3&hid=4&bdata=JnNpdGU9ZWRzLWxpdmUmc2NvcGU9c2l0ZQ%3d%3d#db=buh&AN=23487726

Thomas, Jerry. 2007. Market Division. Retrieved from http://www.decisionanalyst.com/publ_art/marketdivision.dai

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Rahodeb (or John Mackey): Internet Postings about Whole Foods and Wild Oats From its beginnings as one small store in Austin, Texas, Whole Foods Market has grown into the world’s leading retailer of natural and organic foods, with hundreds of locations in North America and the United Kingdom. Whole Foods was founded by Craig Weller, Mark Skiles, and John Mackey, the current CEO. Whole Foods has expanded through the acquisition of numerous companies, including but not limited to Wellspring Grocery, Fresh Fields, Bread of Life, Merchant of Vino, Allegro Coffee, Nature’s Heartland, and Harry’s Farmers Market, among others. The most recent acquisition was Wild Oats Markets.

Rahodeb (or John Mackey): Internet Postings about Whole Foods and Wild Oats
From its beginnings as one small store in Austin, Texas, Whole Foods Market has grown into the world’s leading retailer of natural and organic foods, with hundreds of locations in North America and the United Kingdom. Whole Foods was founded by Craig Weller, Mark Skiles, and John Mackey, the current CEO. Whole Foods has expanded through the acquisition of numerous companies, including but not limited to Wellspring Grocery, Fresh Fields, Bread of Life, Merchant of Vino, Allegro Coffee, Nature’s Heartland, and Harry’s Farmers Market, among others. The most recent acquisition was Wild Oats Markets.

However, the acquisition of Wild Oats was not without its problems. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) filed suit in June 2007 to block Whole Foods’ acquisition of Wild Oats out of antitrust concerns. Then in August 2007, a federal appeals court turned down the FTC’s request to overturn a federal district court ruling allowing Whole Foods to complete its purchase of its rival.

Interestingly, while conducting its antitrust review, the FTC discovered that, over a period of several years, John Mackey had posted comments about Whole Foods and its competitors in the online stock forums of Yahoo! Finance. Mackey used the screen name “Rahodeb”—an anagram of Deborah, the name of Mackey’s wife—to conceal his true identity. At least 240 of Rahodeb’s 1,300 or so posts mentioned Wild Oats, a company with which Mackey had a bitter rivalry.

The acrimony between Mackey and Perry Odak, CEO of Wild Oats, can be traced to the first time the two men met at a retailing conference in Manhattan in 2001. “I’m going to destroy you,” Mackey shouted at Odak. Whole Foods’ officials tell a different version of the story—with milder language—but the confrontation has persisted as a food-industry legend.

For nearly eight years, John Mackey wrote his pseudonymous posts, some lauding Whole Foods’ financial results, and others castigating its rival Wild Oats. In January 2005, Rahodeb posted this opinion: “No company would want to buy Wild Oats Markets Inc.” Rahodeb continued, “Would Whole Foods buy OATS? Almost surely not at current prices. What would they gain? OATS locations are too small.  [Wild Oats management] clearly doesn’t know what it is doing OATS has no value and no future.” Other comments that Mackey posted under the Rahodeb alias included the following: “While I’m not a Mackey groupie I do admire what the man has accomplished.” “I love the company and I’m in it for the long haul. I shop at whole foods. I own a great deal of its stock. I’m aligned with the mission and the values of the company are there something wrong with this?”

Mackey asserts that his online comments were personal, not professional. However, Mackey’s friends and colleagues say there is little distinction between his personal and professional sides, and that he is straightforward and transparent. Mackey’s defenders also say, “his anonymous comments—though boastful, provocative and impulsive—were no different from his public ones, and were never intended to disclose insider information or move stock prices.”

In a statement published in mid-July 2007 on the Whole Foods’ Web site, Mackey “said his anonymous statements didn’t reflect his or the company’s policies or beliefs. Some of the views Rahodeb expressed, Mr. Mackey said, didn’t match his own beliefs.” Mackey further stated that he made the anonymous comments on Yahoo Finance because he “had fun doing it.”

Mackey’s online activities were investigated by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the FTC. As the legal wrangling unfolded, charges and countercharges were slung—not just by the direct participants, but by interested observers as well—and utterly delicious twists and turns kept emerging. FTC lawyers were shocked that their “‘gotcha’ haul of off-color statements by Mackey wasn’t enough to block his merger with Wild Oats in the absence of serious antitrust evidence.” However, Mackey asserted that the FTC was “running ‘a rigged game’ that handcuffs retailers and other companies under its jurisdiction.”

Some commentators castigated Mackey. For instance, John Hollon, editor of the Business of Management blog characterizes Mackey as “a delusional apologist for his own bad behavior.” Others, however, were less critical. The blogger Andres Acosta, disagrees with Hollon, saying, “I look at it differently. I appreciate his transparency and willingness to admit to making a mistake. It’s the sign of a great leader who can pick himself up after taking a hard fall and keep moving forward.” Chiming in with a nuanced argument that could be interpreted as supporting either a positive or negative view of Mackey is Adam Sarner, an analyst at Gartner Inc., who says, “[t]he need for executive online transparency depends on the context of the post.”

Has John Mackey been vindicated in Whole Foods’ acquisition of Wild Oats? Hallie Mummert, writing in Target Marketing, says, “[w]hat some chalked up to a bizarre display of self-aggrandizement, others pegged as unethical and possibly illegal behavior.” And business blogger, Laurie Ruettimann, writes, “Great companies operate on the right side of the ethical spectrum and have little tolerance for ‘spin.’” Mackey himself, quoted in The Wall Street Journal, says, “If I could get the money back, I’d take it. We would be better off today if we hadn’t done this deal—taking on all this debt right before the economy collapsed.” Even though Mackey has been described as “an opinionated iconoclast,” he “succeeded in buying out his largest competitor, Wild Oats Markets, and has expanded overseas to London, the next stop on his quest for global dominance.”

 

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The war in alcohol market has been simmering and this time Kishore Chabria seems to be a winner over his arch rival Vijay Mallya. Chabaria’s Allied Blenders & Distillers (ABD) owned whiskey brand Officer’s Choice has overtaken UB Group’s Bagpiper in the Indian market in Financial Year 2012.

Case Study: Officer’s Choice journey from a distant number to be the leader

By Pallavi Srivastava

 

Tags: Whisky, Kishore Chabria, Vijay Mallya, Allied Blenders & Distillers, Officer’s Choice, Bagpiper, Sunil R shetty, Ahmed Rahimtoola

 

The war in alcohol market has been simmering and this time Kishore Chabria seems to be a winner over his arch rival Vijay Mallya. Chabaria’s  Allied Blenders & Distillers (ABD) owned whiskey brand Officer’s Choice has overtaken UB Group’s Bagpiper in the Indian market in Financial Year 2012.

 

But this did not happen overnight. Back in 2007-08 Officer’s Choice whisky was a distant number two with sales of about 66 lakh cases and a market share of 14%, while number one player was Bagpiper with about 1.32 crore cases. Certainly, growing alcohol market in the country made ABD rethink its strategy. Talking about the Indian alcohol market, Sunil R Shetty, Planning Services Director, Draftfcb + Ulka says, “In volume terms, India is emerging as one of the largest alcohol markets in the world. The rising income levels and the demographic dividend are not just good for the economy but also attractive for alcohol brands.” No wonder ABD’s Officer’s Choice decided to change the game in the Indian market.

 

 

 

The challenge

So what were the key challenges in front of Officer’s Choice in 2008? Ahmed Rahimtoola, VP, Marketing, ABD answers, “Four years ago, when we conducted a brand equity study on the brand Officers Choice we realised that although the brand was selling 66 lakh cases and growing, research bought out some startling insights.” He further shared that the research indicated that the brand was showing signs of vulnerability, packaging was staid and dated, the erstwhile brand communication was not relevant and differentiated, the value proposition was low vis a vis competing brands and that the brand lacked a big brand feel.

The Strategy

The key areas where the brand was lacking were: Packaging, Communication and a “Big Brand Feel”. To address these challenges Officer’s Choice adopted three pronged strategy: New packaging, Brand repositioning and giving it a Big brand feel.

Packaging

The first step was to upgrade the packaging. The research indicated that the old packaging was considered staid, dull and lacked vibrancy. So the packaging was made more contemporary and dynamic to give it  a “today feel”. At the same time certain core identifiers of  the brand like the badge, the font and the red colour were retained  so as to not alienate the existing consumer franchise.

Re-positioning

The second and the most important step for Officer’s Choice was repositioning the brand to make it more relevant to the core target group so that it connects with them at an emotional level.

In the research it was found that the brand’s masculinity proposition was not relevant to the modern consumers. Also, it was  seen as a brand for oneself rather than a social statement. Rahimtoola adds, “The research indicated that Officer Choice consumer wants to be seen as a respected person who has authority and is conventionally successful. Recognition is his key motivation and the only way he believes he can achieve this, is through his deeds and actions. Being helpful, good natured and honest; he believes will help him stand out earn the respect of others.  The choices (right) he makes, is what he believes will make him stand out from the rest. Hence using these insights we repositioned the brand OC on the righteousness platform with a tagline ‘Jagaiye Andaar Ka Officer’ (Awaken the Officer in You).”

The big idea around which the campaign revolved was: It is the choices and actions that we take that determine whether we are true officers or not, in life. The brand proposition was communicated heavily on TV through a series of 3 ad-films based on real life situations. The films show common men, faced with ‘choices’ that they come across in their day to day life and the show the true officer take the right choice in life. It created  empathy and affinity for Officer’s Choice and had a very “Feel Good” quotient attached to it

Other than TV,  ATL mediums like Print, OOH and Radio were also used to push the new positioning of the brand. “Brand track research has indicated that the adorer base in terms of consumers has substantially increased after repositioning the brand,” adds Rahimtoola.

The larger than life image

The third step was creating a ‘Big Brand Feel’ a larger than life image. For this the brand  conducted CSR initiatives like Salaam Bengal & Salaam Rajasthan, sponsored big musical shows with leading Bollywood celebrities and local / cultural festivals.

Salaam Bengal and Salaam Rajasthan were CSR initiatives to bring alive the brand essence of ‘Righteousness’ at the ground level. Through Salaam Bengal and Salaam Rajasthan Officer’s Choice created a platform where common people who have contributed to society are recognised and rewarded for the work they have done. ABP group in Bengal and Rajasthan Patrika in Rajasthan were partners of these initiatives.

These CSR initiatives helped the brand to break the clutter that is there in BTL activities for alcohol brands. Talking about the clutter in the BTL space Shetty says, “The challenge is that how do you differentiate yourself in a BTL scenario when every brand worth its salt is fighting for mindshare through similar activities. Hence it will be critical for brands to build properties which have resonance with the brand values and hence can be uniquely associated  to build mindshare.”

Officer’s Choice was able to differentiate with its Salaam initiative. “Officer’s Choice Anandalok Salaam Bengal is a one of its kind initiative that further propels our brand positioning at the ground level. Our brand values like trustworthiness, honesty and integrity are best communicated through such an initiative,” says Rahimtoola.

 

The results

 

The strategy certainly worked for the brand. As within 4 years its sales tripled. Sample this: Officer’s Choice sales were 66 lakh cases in FY 2008 which tripled to 1.62 crore cases in FY 2012, making it India’s largest selling whisky.

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Marketing to kids seems to be evolving at a faster pace in India. And the latest addition to the growing list of kid’s marketers in the country is Mexico based edutainment brand Kidzania.

 

Marketing to kids seems to be evolving at a faster pace in India. And the latest addition to the growing list of kid’s marketers in the country is Mexico based edutainment brand Kidzania.

KidZania is an edutainment indoor theme park scaled & built specially for kids.  The concept of the Kidzania is to create a city like structure that caters to children in the age group of 4-14 years, educating and inspiring kids through role play. The brand’s works on the phenomena of providing themkids real life experiences such as donning the role of a police officer, doctor, journalist or a shopkeeper – and earn money which they can then spend or save. It operates just like a real city complete with buildings, paved streets, vehicles, a functioning economy, and recognisable destinations in the form of establishments sponsored and branded by multi-national and local brands. The facilities are designed to educate through experience, fostering the development of life skills, but from a kid perspective added with fun. There are over 70 role-plays across different activities in 60 different establishments, such as being a chef, pilot, surgeon, nurse, lawyer, fire-fighter, police officer, actor, reporter, artist, newscaster, photographer, etc. The concept of Kidzania was developed by an entrepreneur Xavier Lopez way back in 1996 in Mexico.

But what has created the buzz about the brand in India is Bollywood Star Shahrrukh Khan’s stake in the India venture of Kidzania. In an interview with Pitch, Viraj Singh, CMO, Kidzania India talks about Shahrukh Khan’s role in the venture, Kidszania’s target audience, pricing and marketing strategy and more. Excerpts…

 

 

How does roping in Shahrukh khan will help the brand? Will you also use him as a face of the brand or as endorse? What is Shahrukh’s overall role in this?

Mr Shah Rukh Khan had visited KidZania Dubai with his children. He was delighted and enamored by the edutainment format and the experience his children went through. With the belief that KidZania will fill the current void in the Indian kids’ entertainment space, he committed to bringing this concept to India.  ImagiNation Edutainment India Pvt. Ltd. is the franchise holder for KidZania in India and is a partnership between KidZ INC PTE LTD and  Mr. Shah Rukh Khan.  KidZ INC is the partnership between Comcraft Group,  Xander Group & Maxfield Management Ltd. Mr Khan’s role is currently as a strategic shareholder with a 26% stake.

 

What are the strategic reason behind launching KidZania in India now?

Indians have now become global citizens and are looking at differentiated experiences. The upsurge in Indian households, with their increased purchasing power and enhanced  awareness about global market, is an important factor that has been encouraging foreign brands to invest in the Indian market. When we look at the kids entertainment category, currently we have very few options available – mainly television, malls and video games. Parents and teachers are looking for new ways to motivate and inspire children. KidZania with its unique blend of education cum entertainment is poised to fill in this void. Cognizance also must be taken of the young Indian population, wherein 30% of the Indians are age 14 and below.

 

What is your key target group in India? What is your pricing strategy for the product? Do you think there will be many Indian consumers inclines to spend this much amount for a day of kid’s entertainment?

Our primary target group is children aged 4 to 14 and parents aged 25-45yrs. We are still working on our pricing strategy and it would be comparable to other forms of entertainment available today.  The entry fee for a child would be between Rs 700 -900.  Unlike other entertainment format, here the Adults entry fee will be discounted. We will also have special rates for School Trips & groups. Globally, we work closely with NGO’s and provide underprivileged children access to the center for free.

The Price is a one-time fee and includes all activities for 4-8hrs, depending on the day of the week. Unlike other entertainment options where there will be an additional cost of Food & Beverages; at KidZania a child learns how to make his or her own food/ beverage and can consume it for free.

The KidZaznia experience across the world has been that Parents perceive it as ‘value for money’, and actually encourage their child to visit KidZania.  Interestingly when KidZania launched in Tokyo it as pre-booked online for 6 months in advance.  Even today, a parent needs to book 6-8 weeks in advance for entry on the weekends.

 

 

What brand tie-ups are you looking at? Have you finalised any such associations yet? What will be the nature of brand associations? How can the brand partners leverage with this association?

KidZania, globally has partnered with brands to build realism and add authenticity in the kids experience. The establishments and activities in KidZania are designed in conjunction with the industry specialists. An airline partner knows best how to train pilots or run an airport counter. A bank knows best how to teach children about financial literacy. 

We look at partnering brands who are aligned to the KidZania philosophy of developing the future of children We have over 540 brand partnerships across all our centres. Some of our key partners globally are Unilever, Nestle, Cadbury Kraft, HSBC J&J, P&G, Dettol, DHL, Mattel, HP, Sony, Honda, Emirates Airlines, Coca-Cola Hyundai, Dominos, Yakult and Pizza Hut

 

How has been the initial response of the brands you have approached  so far? Can you name some of such brands?

We have just started talking to our Global Partners in India and they are excited to know that the concept will soon be in India.  

 

By when are you expecting the first facility to be opened in India and why have you chosen Mumbai as first destination? What are the other destinations you are exploring?

KidZania will launch its 1st centre in the commercial capital of India – Mumbai City. We are expected be fully operational by early summer of 2013. We will open centres in Delhi and Bangalore within the next 3 years.

To setup a centre we needed to get 3 things right – Space, Location and Mall Partner.  We were able to close all 3 in Mumbai first so we went ahead with the city.

 

What is the inspiration behind the concept? To what extent will you be localising it in India?

KidZania was founded in Mexico City in 1997 by a young entrepreneur, Xavier Lopez, who dreamed of creating a place where kids could have fun while enjoying real-life experiences. The first park was opened in 1999 and in its first year and every year since, KidZania Mexico has been a runaway success. KidZania has since opened in seven countries across the globe, and over the next twelve months, KidZania centres will open in Mumbai, Santiago, Istanbul, Cairo, Bangkok & Kuwait.

 

The format for KidZania is the same across all centres as it has been tried and tested across multiple countries and cultures.  In India we will keep in mind  local culture and values. We will have some activities specific to Indian environment: The Culinary school will have children learning how to cook Indian food, The Dance studio will teach Indian forms of dance. Further to this we will create certain activities  like the Pottery studio, Recycling , the Bollywood Acting academy etc.   

 

What kind of investments are you making in one facility?

We are still in the middle of construction, so will only have the final figure by end of the year. The Spend globally to set up a centre ranges between $15 to $30 million. Our estimates for India is  about Rs 100 crores [ $19 million ]per centre.

 

What are the key challenges you see in the Indian market and how do you plan to overcome them?

KidZania is an indoor concept, and the challenge is to identify locations  within a Mall, which can accommodate the space, and  other requirements specific to KidZania. Meeting time lines, statutory approvals, traffic management, parking, are some of the other issues which need particular attention and planning.

 

How are you planning to market this concept India

Our marketing strategy over the next 12 months will be to focus on building awareness of the concept with – Brand Partners, Families, Schools and NGO’s. The initial focus is to build relationships with potential industry partners. Once we have our partners tied in, we work with them to promote on specific cross-promotion tie-ups .The consumer centric marketing will follow at a later stage closer to the last quarter of 2012. We will be looking at an integrated marketing approach and use all media vehicles – TV, Print, Radio, OOH and Social Media. Since we will have TV, Radio and Print partners at the centre for our Media related activities, we will leverage our relationships with them while building our marketing strategy.  We also look at taking the KidZania concept out of the center to schools and neighboring towns and villages,  and so there will be a focus on  BTL activations.  Social media will be a key to engaging with parents. We went live on Facebook on the 14th of June.

 

 

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In these changing times markets and consumers are evolving at a ferocious pace and so is the role of communication and marketing. Thus, we, at Pitch decided to take a close look at the changing dynamics. And so the theme for Pitch CMO Summit- South edition is ‘Communication to commerce’. The summit will be held in two cities: Hyderabad (19th June 2012) and Chennai (22nd June 2012).

Pitch CMO Summit South edition to kick off on 19th June

In these changing times markets and consumers are evolving at a ferocious pace and so is the role of communication and marketing. Thus, we, at Pitch decided to take a close look at the changing dynamics. And so the theme for Pitch CMO Summit- South edition is ‘Communication to commerce’. The summit will be held in two cities: Hyderabad (19th June 2012) and Chennai (22nd June 2012).

CEOs, CMOs & Marketing heads of the best of the brands will share detailed case-study presentations at the summit. Some of the key speakers who will be speaking at the summit across the two cities include: Bijou Kurien, President & CE, Lifestyle, Reliance Retail (Keynote speaker Hyderabad); Nitin Seth, Executive Director, Ashok Leyland (Keynote speaker Chennai); R.L.Ravichandran,  Executive Director, Eicher Motors  (Valedictory speaker); K. Ravinder Reddy, CMD- Janapriya Engineers Syndicate (Valedictory speaker); Len Curran, Vice President Sales & Marketing, Renault India; Manisha Lath Gupta, CMO, Axis Bank; Shubhranshu Singh, Marketing Director, India & South Asia, Visa; Murugavel Janakiraman, Founder & CEO, Consim Info; Satya Prabhakar, CEO, Sulekha.com; Kedar Apshankar, COO, Peter England; besides others.

Bijou Kurien from Reliance will set the tone of the Pitch CMO Summit’s first South edition on 19th June 2012 in Hyderabad. Kurian will be talking about how modern retail is reshaping consumer behavior in India. With modern retail expanding in every nook and cranny of India, consumer behavior by large is changing too and consumer trends like: falling brand loyalty; impulse purchase; Spoilt for choice; etc are getting more prominent because of these new formats. Kurien who has a huge experience in the retail industry will share his thoughts on how Indian consumer and his buying behavior is evolving thanks to the modern retail formats.

Nitin Seth from Ashok Leyland will set the tone in Chennai with his Keynote address. Seth will be talking about marketing challenges in the B2B automotive space and how Ashok Leyland is outshadowing those challenges.

Apart from the above mentioned marketers other speakers to be part of the Media and marketers panels across the two cities include: Arun Anant, CEO, The Hindu; Clifford Perriera, Director,  TV9 Network; I Venkat, Director, Eenadu Group; Syed Musharaff,  Adage Outdoor; Suresh Reddy, Chairman & CEO, Ybrandt Digital; Charath Narsimhan, CEO, Indian terrain; B.A.Srinivasa, Director, Viveks; G.R.Anand, Director, GRT; Venugopal Iyengar, CMO, Sun DTH; Shankar Bala, CEO, Fourth Dimension Media Solutions. The moderators for the panel discussion include Srinivasan Swamy, CMD, RKSwamy BBDO; R. Sridhar, CEO, Brandcomm and Sriram Gopalakrishnan, Director Marketing and Communications, ISB.

Catch all this and much more on 19th June nd 22nd June in Hyderabad and Chennai only at Pitch CMO Summit south edition.

Watch out for this space for more.

 

One such distinguished speaker is Chander Mohan Sethi, CMD, Reckitt Benckiser (RB). Sethi will be speaking on ‘Cult brands: keeping them relevant to the ever changing India’.

 

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The stock market crash of 1929 was the cause of The Great Depression. This time in our history left many people unsure as to rather or not to trust financial institutions causing many Americans to remove all of their money from their bank accounts. Unfortunately Americans withdrawing their money caused many banks to go out of business. As a result of this these businesses lost the lenders who were funding their businesses causing them to also close down and leaving many Americans jobless. The economy began to spiral out of control to the point that many Americans felt like it would never return to normal. During The Great Depression many people lost their jobs hence not having money to spend. The supply of goods was high but the demand for those goods was decreasing significantly. The surplus in goods and services caused people to become unemployed because their services were no longer needed. The decrease in demand caused many companies to stop hiring because their businesses were suffering. People were going without food, they were losing their job, and losing their homes. This was called The Great Depression because many people were depressed about their circumstances.

The Great Depression:

The stock market crash of 1929 was the cause of The Great Depression. This time in our history left many people unsure as to rather or not to trust financial institutions causing many Americans to remove all of their money from their bank accounts. Unfortunately Americans withdrawing their money caused many banks to go out of business. As a result of this these businesses lost the lenders who were funding their businesses causing them to also close down and leaving many Americans jobless. The economy began to spiral out of control to the point that many Americans felt like it would never return to normal. During The Great Depression many people lost their jobs hence not having money to spend. The supply of goods was high but the demand for those goods was decreasing significantly. The surplus in goods and services caused people to become unemployed because their services were no longer needed. The decrease in demand caused many companies to stop hiring because their businesses were suffering. People were going without food, they were losing their job, and losing their homes. This was called The Great Depression because many people were depressed about their circumstances.

The way these challenges affected the labor demand and supply demand in The Great Depression is it caused so much strain on companies, people, and the government alike. It created a surplus in goods that didn’t get purchased because people were unable to purchase them. The labor market crashed many people searched for jobs that no longer existed. Families were poor living from day to day never knowing what the next day would bring.