Being a publicly listed company brings pressure to generate consistent growth. Shareholders demand a return on their investment and the first principle of capitalist business must be followed. Growth may manifest itself in diversification or in all manner of business decisions, with both short term and long term goals as the objective.
Needless to say, brands also have marketing money to invest where they see value and strategic objectives that don’t always dovetail totally with the needs of small store owners.
Perhaps the strategy of playing to the ‘cool guy’ has waned amongst the biggest players of all?
Phil from Laced is aware their category no longer has the luxury of being seen to drive the business. “The chains get more attention from the major labels. We’re the underdog and a small percentage of their business. We could always do with more support, especially now.”
On the flipside, dealing with those small stores that order less and less but still want to retain exclusivity is a hassle that the big guns may no longer be prepared to accommodate. Outstanding accounts are also unlikely to create positive goodwill.
No wonder then that even a small outfit like FEIT would embark on an ambitious plan to become an internet-only brand. Check our interview with FEIT’s Tull Price in Issue 18 for his spin on this complex issue.
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