Customer categorization, relational justice and SME performance in supermarket supply chains

Ricardo Malagueño (Norwich Business School, University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK)
Ismail Gölgeci (School of Business and Social Sciences Department of Business Development and Technology, Aarhus University, Copenhagen, Denmark)
Andrew Fearne (Norwich Business School, University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK)

Supply Chain Management

ISSN: 1359-8546

Publication date: 7 May 2019

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the impact of perceived relational justice on the relationship between key customer categorization and performance of small food and drink producers in supermarket supply chains.

Design/methodology/approach

Survey data are derived from a sample of (small-scale) suppliers of local and regional food to a large British supermarket. Partial least squares regression analysis was used to test a conceptual framework, which positions relational justice as a mediator in the relationship between key customer categorization and supplier performance, moderated by the length of the relationship.

Findings

The findings reveal that small suppliers who perceive their treatment by their key customers as fair tend to achieve higher business performance, which supports the hypothesized mediating role of relational justice on supplier performance. However, this research found no evidence to support the hypothesis that this role is moderated by the length of the relationship between the supplier and buyer.

Originality/value

This paper makes a novel empirical contribution, focusing on performance outcomes for small-scale suppliers in a highly competitive environment (fast-moving consumer goods) with customers (supermarkets) who have significant market power. Accordingly, the paper shows that the way supermarket buyers treat their suppliers matters more for the performance of their suppliers than the very fact that they are key customers.

Keywords

Citation

Malagueño, R., Gölgeci, I. and Fearne, A. (2019), "Customer categorization, relational justice and SME performance in supermarket supply chains", Supply Chain Management, Vol. 24 No. 3, pp. 417-429. https://doi.org/10.1108/SCM-06-2018-0237

Download as .RIS

Publisher

:

Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2019, Emerald Publishing Limited

Please note you might not have access to this content

You may be able to access this content by login via Shibboleth, Open Athens or with your Emerald account.
If you would like to contact us about accessing this content, click the button and fill out the form.
To rent this content from Deepdyve, please click the button.