Wednesday 19 February 2014

Poundland getting serious, a new challenge in NAMland?

pic: City AM
News that the Pound shop leader plans to float in March, on the back of a new line-up of retail talent in the boardroom, and probably raising £700m in the process, means new resourcing issues for suppliers...  In other words, it is time to take the single-price discounters seriously.

Traditionally, whilst our marketing colleagues have little trouble assigning their best and most energetic talent to launching new brands, the allocation of our best NAMs tended to be on the basis of sales turnover, or in a few instances, net profit... Even more seriously, this allocation to the Big Four is often determined by career-minded NAMs that are unwilling to besmirch their CVs with anything less...

After all, 'looking after the poundshops' does not carry quite the same cachet as 'Technically I managed Sainsbury's in the afternoons, but my real job was opening up our top-secret UK multi-channel strategy' in job interviews...

The 17% CAGR of Poundland, and the 26% CAGR of Amazon are equivalent to Walmart's 40-years 25% Compound Annual Growth Rate that produced today's global No.1 player, and are not only setting new standards in new retail, but are also presenting a new basis for allocating account responsibilities of our best NAMs.

All things being equal, why not consider early growth rate as a way of identifying embryo major accounts, acknowledging if the formula is right, that profitability and scale will follow...

Whilst we are not quite suggesting that "suppliers should ditch 'no growth' supermarkets, in favour of high growth areas of the food market like online and discounters" (Booker's Charles Wilson, City Food Lecture), perhaps a fundamental shift in NAM responsibilities would help to keep several balls in the air?

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