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Clique Pens Case Study Sample

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A ferocious electrical storm had merely brought brief alleviation to the sweltering mid-August temperatures in Tampa. Florida. as Elise Ferguson. president of the authorship implements division of U. S. Home. Clique Pens. stared at the notepad in forepart of her. She had jotted some ideas about merely whose demands were more of import for Clique to satisfy—its retail merchants or its consumers? Fortunately. the 2013 back-to-school gross revenues of her nucleus authorship implements merchandise lines appeared to be on end for a 3 % addition over 2012.

These gross revenues were non without a cost. nevertheless. as assorted price reductions. allowances. and other off-invoice trades had pushed gross net income border down from 42 % in 2010 to merely over 36 % in 2012. ( See Exhibit 1. ) Another one of Ferguson’s primary ends for Clique was to halt this diminution in gross net income border per centum and turn its overall gross net income by 4 % . She hoped to carry through this by turning grosss and increasing the gross net income border.

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At this point. she felt it was improbable that the latter would go on this twelvemonth ( 2013 ) .

Ferguson wondered. were all these “giveaways” to retail merchants necessary? If so. couldn’t the monies be shifted to a signifier referred to by and large as Market Development Funds ( MDF ) . which would in theory allow Clique to hold more control over their usage in driving gross revenues of its merchandises. instead than merely increasing retail merchant borders? Clique had spent considerable attempt on contorting costs out of its supply concatenation. and Ferguson was reasonably certain that the impairment in borders was being driven entirely by these trade price reductions. Ferguson had held several recent meetings with Logan Chen. division VP of selling. and his merchandise directors. for their positions on this issue. She had besides had similar meetings with Ross McMillan. division VP of gross revenues. and several of his cardinal history directors. Chen and his staff felt strongly that cut downing trade price reductions to pay for marketing-controlled. consumer-oriented MDF. coupled with extra consumer-targeted selling plans. was the best manner to guarantee that consumers were having the full benefit of Clique’s promotional dollars. He was certain this would ensue in higher gross revenues and net income for Clique.

HBS Senior Lecturer Frank V. Cespedes and Professor James Kindley. College of Charleston. prepared this instance entirely as a footing for category treatment and non as an indorsement. a beginning of primary informations. or an illustration of effectual or uneffective direction. Although based on existent events and despite occasional mentions to existent companies. this instance is fabricated and any resemblance to existent individuals or entities is coinciding. Copyright © 2013 President and Fellows of Harvard College. To order transcripts or bespeak permission to reproduce stuffs. name 1-800-545-7685. write Harvard Business Publishing. Boston. MA 02163. or travel to http: //www. hbsp. Harvard University. edu. This publication may non be digitized. photocopied. or otherwise reproduced. posted. or transmitted. without the permission of Harvard Business School. This papers is authorized for usage merely in MNGT6251 Marketing Management S2. 2015 by AGSM MBA Programs. University of New South Wales from March 2015 to September 2015. 9-914-525

DECEMBER 16. 2013For sole usage University of New South Wales. 2015 914-525 | Clique Pens: The Writing Implements Division of U. S. Home McMillan had a really different point of position. He and his staff believed Clique would lose considerable shelf infinite and gross revenues to rivals if trade price reductions were reduced in favour of marketing-controlled financess. He besides argued that consumer advertisement should be reduced to fund retailer-oriented MDF controlled by the gross revenues squad. which could so supply “deals” for specific histories in response to competitory activities. McMillan was certain that this would increase Clique’s retail shelf infinite and overall market portion. taking to greater gross revenues and more overall net income. albeit at a lower gross net income border.

Ferguson knew that all of Clique’s rivals provided a host of price reductions and allowances to the trade in the war for retail infinite. She besides knew that price reductions. one time given. seemed about impossible to claw back. This meant that any new plan ( MDF ) would hold to be clearly “equal” or better in the retailers’ eyes to their present Clique plan to be adopted. She besides was concerned that implementing any alteration would necessitate acute cooperation between selling and gross revenues. Jot downing down a few more ideas. she recognized that she’d need to run into with Chen and McMillan shortly. as retail merchant planning rhythms were already underway for the critical back-to-school merchandising period for 2014. Fountain Pens. Ballpoint Pens. Mechanical Pencils: A Very Brief History The first practical fountain pen was invented by Louis Waterman in 1875. For 70 old ages the Waterman Pen Company led the universe in the industry of fountains pens. But in the late fiftiess. a displacement to ballpoint pens brush the United States.

The Waterman Company continued to concentrate on its fountain pen line. its gross revenues deteriorated. and the company was forced to sell to BIC ( see below ) . Ballpoint pens trace their beginning to John Loud. in 1888. The innovation ne’er truly took off until Milton Reynolds managed to market them successfully in the fortiess. The early pens were plagued by leaking-ink jobs that were subsequently solved. in the fiftiess. by Patrick Frawley. who named his ballpen “Papermate. ” In 1958 M. Marcel Bich. a Frenchman good established as the taking European pen shaper. bought the Waterman Company. organizing Waterman–BIC Pen Company. Bich concentrated the company on ballpen pens. and with aggressive pricing and publicity. the company became the market leader by the early 1970s.

The Waterman hallmark was sold by Bich to a Zurich house and was later acquired by Newell ( now Newell Rubbermaid ) . The trade name continues to sell today. Mechanical pencils trace their beginnings back to 1822. in the United Kingdom. In 1860 the A. W. Faber company refined the design specifically for designers. The modern mechanical pencil emerged in 1915 from two discoverers at the same time: Tokuji Hayakawa. whose “lead-thrusting device” became the first merchandise for what is now the Sharp Electronics Corporation ; and Charles Keeren. from Illinois. who created the “ever-sharp” pencil. The contemporary versions of these innovations have been improved over the old ages but still utilize progressing mechanisms for the lead that are little changed from the masters. Company History

U. S. Home was founded in 1978 by Bob Utley. once a stock bargainer for Smith Barney. Utley had watched a figure of enterprisers. such as 1960s-era venture capitalist Jim Ling. accumulate tremendous wealth by geting and piecing a odds and ends of companies that became known as “diversified pudding stones. ” While Utley felt that the values assigned to these gatherings were out of line. he sensed that chances existed for person who could set together reasonably little BRIEFCASES | HARVARD BUSINESS SCHOOL

This papers is authorized for usage merely in MNGT6251 Marketing Management S2. 2015 by AGSM MBA Programs. University of New South Wales from March 2015 to September 2015. For sole usage University of New South Wales. 2015

Clique Pens: The Writing Implements Division of U. S. Home | 914-525 companies that had proprietary merchandises with existent value that could be enhanced with proper capitalisation and strong direction. He besides wanted to take advantage of awaited growing in concatenation price reduction shops. finally epitomized by Wal-Mart. by enabling a little concern to run into the “big box” selling and supply concatenation demands that were beyond the capablenesss of all but the largest houses. With his ain capital. plus financess raised from friends and associates. Utley started buying little consumer merchandises companies that manufactured points that he felt were good suited to dismiss retail merchants. Utley was a innovator in developing Asiatic providers. and mass retail merchants welcomed the values he brought them. Get downing with bed and bath points. Utley acquired a scope of companies. from hardware to ballpoint pens. over the following 10 old ages. He would retain trade names and company direction. as possible. but consolidate them under the U. S.

Home corporate umbrella. Clique Pens was formed in 1922 by two Mennonite cousins in Kansas City. Missouri. The company originally made fountain pens similar to the authoritative Waterman pens and in the sixtiess rapidly adopted the new. cheap ballpen design. Clique Pens were known for their useful designs that reflected the founders’ nucleus values and for their “always ready” ink supply that did non necessitate the author to do several shots with the pen before ink flowed. The ink expression was Clique’s “secret sauce” and provided a cardinal competitory differentiation. In 1980. when Utley acquired it. Clique had a full line of composing implements and markers. Its gross revenues at that clip were about $ 17 million. Under U. S. Home. Clique has grown steadily. and in 2013 its stalls of trade names sold worldwide. ( See Exhibit 1. ) The U. S. Writing Implements Industry in 2013

Over 50 major consumer merchandises houses competed in the authorship implements concern along with legion little distributers who purchased generic points from planetary providers. More than 20 billion pens and pencils were sold worldwide in 2012. This unit volume has non been affected by electronic communicating. to the surprise of many who predicted the terminal of handwriting when the digital age took root. Pens and pencils were sold in many types of retail mercantile establishments such as supermarkets. mass retail merchants. drug shops. warehouse nines. section shops. and forte shops. Manufacturers shipped direct and through distributers who frequently needed to “detail” the shelf infinite. Detailing involved maintaining the retail shows stocked with ware decently presented. By 2013 the U. S. industry did approximately $ 5. 5 billion at manufacturers’ costs and was expected to turn at about 2 % per twelvemonth. in line with population growing. ( See Exhibit 2. ) The industry had some of the more outstanding trade name names in consumer merchandises. such as BIC. Scripto. Pentel. Pilot. Papermate. and Sharpie. Many had sold systematically in the U. S. for more than 50 old ages.

Consumers tended to eschew private-label and unknown trade names of pens and pencils to purchase familiar trade name names. but had small specific trade name trueness. Pens and pencils were viewed as trade goods. except at the high terminal. This resulted in a hyper-competitive conflict for retail shelf infinite among mass trade names. The conflict was manifested in a proliferation of SKUs ( stock maintaining units ) . as major retail merchants requested usage designs and tailored shelf battalions that allowed them some signifier of exclusivity from their rivals. Because retail merchants could take among many well-known trade names. they besides could demand pricing grants from makers as they played them off against each other. Retailers could besides pull out extra allowances and price reductions from makers such as just-in-time bringing. shelf “detailing. ” stocking. and remotion of slow-selling ware.

Particular publicities. such as back-to school-assortments. end-aisle shows. and pallet plans. 1 were frequently sold on cargo. As a consequence of these inducements. pens and pencils were extremely profitable. high-turnover points for retail merchants. but were going less and less profitable for makers as retail monetary values remained about the same for over a decennary. ( See Exhibit 3. ) Growth in the class required taking market portion. which was rather hard as retail merchants had so many trade names from which to take. A retail merchant didn’t need Pentel. for illustration. if it had BIC and Pilot—unlike in other classs. such as electronics. where certain trade names. like Apple. were compulsory for the retail merchant to transport. Selling and Promotions

Clique’s trade name directors worked closely with assorted selling and ad bureaus to develop an incorporate bundle of advertisement. trade. and consumer publicities to keep market portion and profitableness. On norm. Clique allocated 15 % of its entire promotional budget to advertisement. 30 % to consumer publicities. and 55 % to merchandise publicities. ( See Exhibit 1. ) Clique’s rivals used similar allotments. Major retail merchants had consolidated over the period from 1980 to 2013. and the largest. such as Wal- Mart. Target. Walgreens. CVS. and Kroger. had been deriving power over most of their providers. even those with some of the best-known trade names in the universe. Manufacturers of merchandises targeted to big audiences could non win without distribution in major retail merchants. As a consequence. most makers had steadily increased promotional dollars devoted to the retail merchants ( the trade ) . normally by cut downing consumer advertisement and publicity and by cut downing net income borders. Clique’s advertisement and communicating plans were aimed at several market sections consistent with its merchandise line.

Invention was touted aloud by all the companies in the industry. but it by and large consisted of styling and other superficial alterations as the basic pen and pencil engineering remained stable. Consequently. advertisement tended to concentrate on consumer publicities and price-off trades. These ads were frequently tagged with a retail “partner” and carried a statement such as “available at Target. ” Consumer promotions—mostly coupons—were distributed through a assortment of media such as free-standing-inserts ( FSIs ) in Sunday newspapers. particular selling events ( e. g. . parking-lot publicities ) . in-store shows. and hard currency registry grosss. Many of the reception vouchers were extremely targeted. taking advantage of Clique research coupled with sophisticated point-of-sale ( POS ) informations available from major retail merchants. Coupon salvation rates for composing implements were approximately 1. 3 % . lower than for most other consumer merchandises. Manufacturers frequently used joint publicities with sellers such as notebook and letter paper providers.

Clique’s merchandise directors on occasion worked together to advance something like a particular pen and pencil battalion. These types of publicities were hard to put to death. nevertheless. because they required particular wadding and managing. from industry through the supply concatenation to the point- of-sale. increasing costs every bit much as 10 % . Clique besides used societal media. as possible. but the low consumer involvement in the class made it a really minor portion of the selling attempt. The selling directors tried to work closely with gross revenues in implementing pricing and off-invoice trade plans to distributers and retail merchants. Despite their conjunct attempts. gross revenues people frequently made an extra “deal” with a purchaser to derive an order when he or she feel that it was needed. Elise Ferguson had informations which indicated that over 80 % of Clique’s gross revenues were sold on some type of trade. even though the eight-week back-to-school gross revenues period was the lone clip Clique officially offered a 1 Pallet plans featured promotional goods stacked on a palette by and large placed in the aisle of the shop.

Clique’s gross revenues force argued strongly that these trades were indispensable to keep and derive shelf infinite. Ferguson understood that. but besides believed that the trades did small to obtain existent trading support at the point-of-sale. She tended to side with Logan Chen and believed that using discretional financess would let Clique to direct the monies toward more effectual retail show and placement and would back up more co-op advertising2 that improved consumer demand for Clique merchandises. Monetary value price reductions. in her position. were most effectual for Clique if they went to the ultimate consumer. However. Ferguson had had some conversations with a few retail purchasers about perchance altering the manner price reductions were administered. They told her honestly that a alteration in price reduction policy would probably necessitate them to take an addition in regular retail monetary values of at least 5 % in order to keep their gross net income borders. It was non clear how that might impact Clique’s gross revenues. Ferguson made a note to research the pricing issue in the approaching meeting with Chen and McMillan. Retail Channel Management

The composing implement industry had no house with adequate brand- and market-share power to hold a dominant function at retail. Competition for shelf infinite was ferocious but retail merchants tended to be loath to change “shelf share” one time they had chosen their mixtures. Writing implements took comparatively small infinite to expose. but even a little retail merchant had to offer a overplus of manners and types of pens. pencils. and markers at a figure of monetary value points and bundle constellations. ( See Exhibit 4. ) This resulted in a selling and purchasing incubus. Stock-outs were common. It was non clear how price reductions affected this issue. but forward-buying ( retail merchants carrying up on discounted points and particular trades ) resulted in frequent over- and under-stocking. Many retail merchants responded by coercing distributers and makers to keep stock list and supply it just-in-time ( JIT ) . but this was really hard to carry through in the authorship implements class because of the big figure of SKUs retail merchants needed to transport.

Empty nog in the show were common if stock list was managed excessively tightly. To do affairs worse. even while demanding that distributers and makers hold the stock list. most retail merchants still took the volume price reduction for their orders. This state of affairs was exacerbated by the assortment of methods that retail ironss used to counterbalance their purchasers. Some retail merchants based their buyers’ fillips on the spread between gross manufacturer’s monetary values and the net monetary values achieved. Others based fillips on obtaining “dating” or favourable payment footings. such as 2 % 60 net 61 yearss. Still others used return on investing or on assets. and some used dollars sold per square pes. Clique’s sales representative tended to be really suiting for specific purchaser and history “needs. ” which resulted in serious incompatibilities in promotional and pricing plans from history to account. This caused obvious jobs with Clique’s client service and histories receivable forces. It was non clear to Ferguson if MDF would assist relieve this job. but she surely felt it could non do affairs worse. Consumer Purchasing Behavior

Writing implements were purchased often for concern and family usage. Of U. S. consumers. 65 % purchased three or more pens and pencils two times per twelvemonth. Of concerns. 100 % purchased 10 or more pens and pencils three times per twelvemonth. Writing implements were besides sold through legion distributers for advertisement and publicity. These distributers sold many sorts of 2 Co-op advertisement is publicizing a retail merchant runs. such as a handbill. which includes a manufacturer’s merchandise. The cost of the advertisement is shared with the maker in proportion to the ad’s size and existent cost and normally related to the sum of merchandise purchased.

Clique made about 7 % of its gross revenues to ad-specialty traders. many of which provided concerns with pens and pencils custom-printed with their names and Son. Purchase of composing implements was non seasonal except for the back-to-school period from July 15 to September 1. when 18 % of industry volume was sold. Pen and pencil providers promoted to a great extent during this period with both consumer and trade trades. Rivals fought for POS shows. terminal caps. and hard currency registry infinite because clients frequently chose trade name. bundle size. etc. . on impulse. Although 85 % of consumers knew what type of composing implement they wanted when they entered the shop. they still were to a great extent influenced by point-of-sale shows and selling. Consumers responded to inventions such as Clique’s Stylus smooth-roll. immediately drying ink ; but existent invention like this was rare in the class.

Styling. colourss. and manner drove new merchandise development for all houses. Retailers tended to be disbelieving about the impact of these alterations. holding been burned excessively frequently by manufacturers’ empty promises of merchandise inventions that would hike gross revenues. Their desire to be competitory within the class. nevertheless. caused them to travel along with the alterations in their shows and to suit the new points. The changeless watercourse of alterations. along with changing promotional plans. made it hard to maintain shows good stocked. Consumers were frequently faced with empty nogs or misplaced and perchance mispriced merchandise. Over 85 % of composing implements distributed through major retail merchants were sold in assorted battalions dwelling of two or more points. about of which were sold in packaging hung on nog. ( See Exhibit 4. ) These bundles made it somewhat hard for consumers to compare monetary values straight. For illustration. three mechanical pencils from one maker might be sold for $ 3. 87 and five might be sold for $ 5. 34 from another.

Consumers paid attending to price-off trades when posted at the point- of-sale. However. the comparative rarity of purchase by consumers made it difficult for them to spot merchandise value. Few knew what the merchandises “should cost” as they tried to compare pricing among the points in the show. Forte retail merchants and mercantile establishments such as nutrient and drug ironss tended to transport four to six trade names. offering a basic mixture of good. better. and best merchandises. Office supply retail merchants carried many more trade names and covered the full scope of merchandises available. Pricing was small different among trade names in each class. Consumers about ne’er shopped around. even if their trade name of pick was non available when the idea of purchasing pens or pencils occurred to them. Coupons were used by merely 1. 3 % of consumers. and Clique’s voucher salvation rate was in line with that. Meeting with Chen and McMillan

Ferguson asked Logan Chen. selling VP. and Ross McMillan. gross revenues VP. to fall in her in her office to discourse the MDF issue. She wanted particularly to discourse the allotment of support for selling and gross revenues ( consumer and trade ) initiatives in general and to larn each man’s positions on the best manner for Clique to turn net incomes. She knew the two had already had legion heated treatments about these subjects. Chen started the conversation by stating he’d calculated that a displacement to consumer-oriented MDF could bring forth an extra addition in retail gross revenues of 5 % and would ensue in an addition in gross net income border of 2 points—from 36 % to 38 % —if selling administered the financess. Chen wanted to utilize MDF to purchase more co-op advertisement and consumer-directed price reductions. such as “instant vouchers. ” McMillan had his ain computation: he said that implementing MDF as Chen wanted would ensue in a lessening in gross revenues of over 9 % if price reductions were reduced. but conceded that a positive impact on gross net income border of 2 % could happen.

He was inexorable that gross revenues had to command any MDFs or other price reductions. reasoning that if gross revenues had extra financess for “opportunistic” usage. Clique could increase its market portion by every bit much as. 4 % following twelvemonth. Although the gross net income per centum would diminish. he asserted that the overall gross net income had a opportunity of increasing by 3. 5 % . McMillan besides pointed out that retail merchants did non like instant vouchers as they had to be put at the point-of-sale and taken down when the publicity ended ; and. more of import. a monetary value decrease had a serious negative impact on their net incomes unless offset with extra price reductions. McMillan added his sentiment that the company was passing 30 % more on advertisement than necessary. He felt that consumers were non swayed by advertisement and that the money could be used to take more shelf infinite from rivals by basically purchasing it from retail merchants.

Chen had been inexorable that consumers were losing touch with the Clique trade name and that long- term gross revenues would be reduced by cutting selling attempts directed to the consumer. He was certain that net income borders could besides be enhanced with advertisement. He pointed out that legion once- great trade names that stopped advancing themselves to the consumer. like Schlitz beer. rapidly shrank or died. Because Chen besides had informations bespeaking that consumers were non really price-sensitive. he believed that the gross revenues force could implement a monetary value addition that could assist Clique and its retail merchants improve net incomes. His informations indicated that a 6 % monetary value addition would bring forth merely a 1 % decrease in gross revenues. McMillan became visibly annoyed as he listened to Chen. “No manner that any retail merchant is traveling to take a monetary value addition. ” he insisted. “Our rivals will go on to work on thin borders. and we’ll lose to them.

They aren’t passing every bit much on advertisement either. so they have a existent advantage on us now. and you’re proposing that we give them farther advantage. No 1 sees much difference in the merchandises out at that place. so retail merchants are merely traveling to travel with the trade they perceive as giving them the most net income. We can’t pull back price reductions ; and I can utilize extra MDF to take advantage of chances. For illustration. merely last hebdomad our Midwestern regional director had the opportunity to purchase out a rival at Walgreens if he had had financess available to make so. ” McMillan continued. “Besides. price reductions to the consumer don’t work for our histories or us. Here’s an illustration. We ran a trial at Staples in 100 shops with our popular two-pack pen and pencil set in March. Its normal retail monetary value would be $ 1. 97. We priced it at 10 % off—that’s $ 1. 78. The trial shops sold 7 % more units than comparable shops at regular monetary value. but this resulted in lower retail gross revenues grosss. And to set a farther negative on this. the Staples purchaser informed me that his overall unit gross revenues did non increase at all in the trial shops. He merely traded unit gross revenues that would hold gone to one of our rivals at a higher monetary value for more of our units at a lower monetary value. ”

Chen responded. “Our normal trade price reductions for Staples consist of a volume allowance ( 5. 5 % ) . a warehouse allowance of 3 % . and a stocking fee of 1. 5 % . Our sweeping monetary value of the pen and pencil set you tested is $ . 94. Our cost of the set. delivered. is $ . 46. With those price reductions. our gross net income border is reduced from 51 % to 45 % . If we cut down the monetary value so that the retail merchant makes the same mark-up [ gross net income border ] he makes at regular monetary value. alternatively of all the other price reductions. so we make about 7 % more net income on the gross revenues. the consumer gets a better value. and we gain market portion. ” McMillan’s face reddened. “We can’t take away the warehouse and stocking allowances. I don’t think we can even see cut downing the volume allowance.

But if I had MDF financess to run price-off publicities to countervail the loss in net income to the retail merchant. some retail merchants might hold to keep a lower retail monetary value. The entire cost to us wouldn’t be much different than that of the current volume price reduction. ” Chen replied. “If we’re traveling to drive more profitable gross revenues for Clique. it has to be with financess that really reach the consumer. On a longer-term footing. the consumer would be having a better value. and that should ensue in our taking market portion from rivals. Besides. taking control of the financess may let us to be more consistent in our relationship with retail merchants. You have said many times that one of our biggest client service and histories receivable incubuss is the countless price reductions out at that place. ” Ferguson jumped in. “Wouldn’t we save rather a spot of cost by holding fewer price reductions. even if the sum given up was the same? “Sure we’d save. but the universe doesn’t work like that. ” McMillan said. “The purchaser at Staples gets a fillip to a great extent weighted to his realized gross border. so price reductions off our wholesale are highly of import to him.

The purchaser at Wal-Mart reasonably much lives with a set border. around 35 % . but is rewarded for obtaining things that affect cost. like warehouse allowances. roll-back publicities. and center-aisle plans ; the purchaser at Walgreens has a fillip with a constituent that rewards dating and payment price reductions. We have to orient our plans to these different angles of opportunism. If I went to the Wal-Mart purchaser with MDF financess. she’d merely laugh and state me to dismiss our monetary value more. ” Ferguson spoke up. “Look. we can’t let our borders to gnaw further. Ross. can we implement a monetary value addition as Logan has outlined? If non. can we deploy financess that allow us to derive market portion by supplying price reductions straight to the consumer. but still let the retail merchant to do acceptable net income? And do you truly believe our advertisement does nil to assist in this war? I don’t think we can disregard the utmost importance of back uping our trade names. ”

Then Ferguson turned to Chen. “Logan. you justly argue that our clients should comprehend a higher value benefit from lower monetary value. but will they truly? Can value differences be discerned with the brainsick pricing out there—one rival with a three-pack for $ 2. 56 versus our two-pack at $ 1. 78? Are the merchandises truly differentiated at all in the consumers’ heads? Does the retail merchant see any difference. except monetary value? How much disbursement is required to keep our trade name? ” Ferguson so spoke to both work forces. “We have to vie for retail infinite. and the consumer’s head. in a manner that enables us to halt the go oning eroding of our brand’s power with our major histories. and it can’t be driven merely by take downing our monetary values. And one more thing. we need to decide this quandary between selling and sales—this battling back and Forth demands to stop. You have 48 hours to come up with a program to increase our gross net income that will work with our retail merchants and actuate our consumers. We’ll meet once more Friday afternoon. ”

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