Transferring the Retail Format Successfully into Foreign Countries
Abstract Research shows that most retailers expand abroad by transferring some elements of their format, and therefore their value chain, unchanged, while adapting other elements. However, little is known about how strongly a retail format's standardized or adapted elements affect performance in a foreign country. To shed light on this issue, this study focuses on the design of important processes and offerings, as both determine retailers' efficiency and sales. This study proposes that successful retailers build on the unchanged know-how parts of the format by combining more standardized core elements with adapted peripheral elements. The authors draw from a survey of 102 international retailers and interviews with 126 executives conducted at their headquarters. The results show that retailers transfer offers (marketing programs) and processes (marketing and supply chain) differently and hierarchically; that is, peripheral elements are allowed to vary, whereas core elements are transferred in a more stan...