Category captain arrangements in grocery retail marketing
Asia Pacific Journal of Marketing and Logistics
Article publication date: 8 June 2015
The purpose of this paper is to examine shelf management practices of grocery retail chains and their category captains (CCs) in the marketing of consumer packaged goods.
This is a qualitative, exploratory study that is set in a duopoly retail environment in the Asia-Pacific region. The study employed 18 in-depth interviews with executives and managers of two umbrella retail organisations and their suppliers/manufacturers. The method of data analysis employed was content analysis.
Despite CC input in merchandising decisions, it is the retail chains that have the final say on shelf matters. There is no risk of strategic loss of power in employing CCs to manage store product categories on behalf of, or in partnership with retailers provided the retail chains closely monitor the activities and decisions/recommendations of the captains.
The paper is developed from data obtained from the grocery retail industry of one economy. Future research would need to extend this study to other economies with similar as well as different conditions.
The research offers reassurance to grocery retail practitioners who may be contemplating lessening the burden of managing all their store categories by themselves and switching to CC arrangements. The reassurance is that the reported risk associated with loss of power is manageable.
The paper has created a typology termed the “category captain arrangement/grocery retail concentration matrix” and specific directions for further research.
Chimhundu, R., Kong, E. and Gururajan, R. (2015), "Category captain arrangements in grocery retail marketing", Asia Pacific Journal of Marketing and Logistics, Vol. 27 No. 3, pp. 368-384. https://doi.org/10.1108/APJML-08-2014-0124
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