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Different domestic and international retail chains
Retail chains I also found the expression chain stores are a range of retail outlets which share a brand and central management, usually with standardized business methods and practices. They are a type of business chain. Such stores may be branches owned by one company or franchises owned by local individuals or firms and operated under contract with the parent corporation. Features common to all chains are centralized marketing and purchasing, which often result in economies of scale, meaning lower costs and presumably higher profits.
These characteristics also apply to chain restaurants and some service-oriented chain businesses. Some argue that the standardized products which result from such centralization are culturally detrimental; for example, chain music stores are frowned upon by some for stocking works of more popular music if they exclude less well known, usually independent artists. Critics of chains allege that they are economically damaging to communities because they extract capital that otherwise would recirculate in the local economy with independently owned businesses.
Retail chain stores in the United States expanded in the early 1900s. In that time, mail-order companies began taking retail business from local stores, which tended to be expensive and offer limited selection. Department stores also expanded during this period, taking business from small specialty shops. In 1929, North Carolina and Indiana taxed chain stores (defined as a second store owned by a single owner), and other states followed.
Is a one of the largest and most successful retailing chains in South Eastern Europe and the leading retailing chain in Slovenia, while they are at the same time building their presence in new markets. The group is becoming the third largest food-product chain in Croatia, has a strong market position in Bosnia Herzegovina, and has also opened the largest shopping centre in Serbia.
The personality and corporate image of the Mercator trademark are distinguished by a strategic developmental direction, a recognizable corporate culture, social responsibility, and care for the future. They would like to provide people with real quality of life. Their sales range is adapted to customers wishes, needs, personalities, and lifestyle. They create added value by offering relaxed shopping in Mercator's retail stores, informing customers on products' attributes, and raising their consciousness regarding the importance of a healthy lifestyle. Customer satisfaction and Mercator's presence in customers hearts is the biggest acknowledgement for Mercator trademark.
The key objective of company is to meet customer's needs effectively, to offer them wide range of products at the best possible value, high quality goods and kind service. This is exactly why new slogan -“Where Good Things Cost Less” - was introduced, whereby “things” include goods as well as services Tus offers indirectly or directly in outlet stores. Company's mission is based on innovation, progress, relaxed labour and client relations, customer satisfaction due to low prices, quality of goods and services, quality of their outlet stores as well as care for personal development and social security of their employees. Tus is striving to remain positive, fast-growing, modern, cost-effective and well organised company, founded upon liability and affiliation of their employees. Is the second biggest domestic retail chain, which can also offers a lot of fun to customers with big cinema centre, bowling centre which are located in big supermarkets like is in Celje.
SPAR is the world's largest international food retail chain with nearly 16,000 stores in 34 countries. The first SPAR store opened in the Netherlands in 1932, realising founder Adriaan van Well's vision to bring independent retailers together to benefit from increased buying power as a group. His vision has never been more relevant today in the face of tough competition from many quarters. And it's clearly a winning formula, with the SPAR organisation now reaching most corners of the globe.
The SPAR concept began to extend outside of the Netherlands at the end of the 1940's when Belgium became the second SPAR country in 1947. During the 1950's there was a rapid expansion of the SPAR concept throughout Europe. This was initiated by the establishment of International SPAR in 1953 with Mr. van Well as the first president. The next twenty years saw SPAR continuing to expand within Europe and also into two new continents. In 1963 SPAR South Africa joined while in 1977 SPAR was established in Japan. The last twenty years have been a period in which SPAR has grown most rapidly. During these years SPAR was introduced into the Eastern European countries. Two new continents were introduced to SPAR with the arrival of SPAR Argentina and SPAR Australia.
SPAR stores provide the ultimate in convenience shopping; trusted worldwide for their selection, quality and value. One of most attractive assets is the SPAR own brand range. This excellent quality label encompasses nearly 900 different products, from the innovative to traditional favourites, and we're constantly enhancing and enlarging the choices. Independent research reveals that 75% of our customers prefer to buy SPAR brand products.
SPAR opened his first shopping centre in Slovenia in 1991. Decade and a half later SPAR owns 25 supermarkets, 29 hypermarkets and 9 mega markets in Slovenia. Although they offers products at low prices, they offer a lot of pleasure to their customers. All mega markets contain also a number of different restaurants, and they give you a free parking place in parking hall.
Richer Sounds is a privately owned home entertainment equipment company founded by Julian Richer. It specialises in home entertainment products, specifically hi-fis, televisions and speakers. There are currently around 43 stores located in 38 towns around the United Kingdom. In Ireland, there are franchise stores owned and managed by John McDonald. The first store was opened in 1978 when Julian was just 19. The chain also has an e-commerce site offering products for sale, which are usually cheaper than advertised instore prices. The web price is always available in-store.
The company has been accused of selling "seconds" (second hand products/returned products) by other competitors, but this is untrue and merely sour grapes from their competitors according to their web site. Also explained on the site is the size of the stores (which are smaller than most competitors), with the company claiming that smaller stores mean cheaper prices.
Richer Sounds is also well known for giving away ice-lollies in the summer and keeping customers happy with free coffee and mince-pies in the run-up to Christmas. Shops are characterised by friendly, knowledgeable staff and the company has in the past offered a variety of interesting selling points such as:
- The company offers extended warranties that are substantially cheaper than those from rivals such as Currys and Comet. In addition, the full cost of the warranty is refunded at the end of the warranty period if no claims have been made.
The Richer Sounds store at London Bridge is holder of a Guinness World Record for the highest annual sales per unit area: £195,426 per Sq metre.
Many trace discount retailing birth to 1962, the first year of operation for Kmart, Target and Wal-Mart. But by that time, Sam Walton's tiny chain of variety stores in Arkansas and Kansas was already facing competition from regional discount chains. Sam travelled the country to study this radical, new retailing concept and was convinced it was the wave of the future. He and his wife, Helen, put up 95 percent of the money for the first Wal-Mart store in Rogers, Arkansas, borrowing heavily on Sam's vision that the American consumer was shifting to a different type of general store. All started with an understanding of what consumers want from a retailer. Today, Sam's gamble is a global company with more than 1.8 million associates worldwide and nearly 6,500 stores and wholesale clubs across 15 countries.
Also technology plays an important role in helping Wal-Mart stay customer focused. Wal-Mart invented the practice of sharing sales data via computer with different suppliers. As a result, Wal-Mart stores rarely run out of stock of popular items.
Wal-Mart became an international company in 1991 when a SAM'S Club opened near Mexico City. Just two years later, Wal-Mart International was created to oversee the growing opportunities for the company worldwide. Since then, the International segment has enjoyed rapid growth and consumer acceptance. Today, customers at more than 2,660 units in fourteen countries prove Wal-Mart's Every Day Low Price promise is a message clearly understood in any language. Wal-Mart International employs more than 500,000 associates in Argentina, Brazil, Canada, China, Germany, Japan, Mexico, the United Kingdom and many other countries.
Wal-Mart International announced that 2006 fiscal year end sales reached $62.7 billion, an 11.4 percent increase over the previous year, and that operating profit rose to $3.3 billion, an increase of 11.4 percent over the prior year.