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jerryking : fragmented_markets   7

A new challenge for the new Mandelas
Jun. 29 2013 | The Globe and Mail | Doug Saunders.

Most of this improvement is propelled by the continent’s extremely rapid economic growth. Economies and real incomes have grown about 5 per cent annually for most of the past decade, and are now beating China and are projected to grow even faster in the coming years. At least some of this is reaching the people: Three out of four Africans now own a cellphone, a significant possession in poor countries.

All this being said, there is a disturbing lack of more lasting progress on the ground. It has become popular to claim that there are now 300 million “middle-class consumers” in Africa, almost a third of the population. This is not true in any meaningful way.

“Across Africa,” Ghanaian businessman Bright Simons wrote recently in the Harvard Business review, “incomes are rising fastest among those engaged in brokering trade in goods and services across fragmented markets … These people are rarely well-educated, though, and they share none of the cultural traits seen in the West and Asia as prerequisite to middle-class life.” Meanwhile, young and educated Africans are unable to earn anything close to the incomes that would be considered “middle class” elsewhere.

In other words, almost nobody in Africa is actually middle class: most countries are sharply polarized between a very wealthy elite and a poor who, while rising just above the level of hand-to-mouth poverty, are still unable to purchase more than the most rudimentary goods....Africa’s problems are largely self-created. Much of the continent’s new wealth comes from resource extraction (which is twice the size of any other industry). But, with a few important exceptions, governments remain unable or unwilling to keep much of this wealth within their borders or use it to create other, more lasting economies.

Now that Africa is close to solving the old problems of absolute poverty and democratic stability, it needs to overcome the new challenge of creating a real middle class – a challenge that will require another generation of Mandelas.
Doug_Saunders  Africa  middle_class  movingonup  natural_resources  resource_extraction  commodities  cultural_values  leaders  politicians  fragmented_markets 
june 2013 by jerryking
THE EVE OF BATTLE
Oct 2006 | Canadian Grocer 120. 8 (): 38-39,41,43. | Andrew Allentuck

Wal-Mart's success in the U.S. was built on conquering the fragmented and relatively inefficient grocery market, says [John Chamberlain]. But Canada is likely to be different. "It it were a slam dunk, Wal-Mart's Supercentres would have been here a lot sooner. If you read into the time they have taken to arrive, there is a recognition that this market is going to be very challenging." As award-winning Business Week senior writer Anthony Bianco said, in The Bully of Bentonville (Random House, 2006), "It is far from certain that even Wal-Mart can thrive in a Wal-Mart world."

What will Canadian retail grocery be like a few years down the road? Chamberlain figures that Wal-Mart will take over packaged goods. "It can dominate the field. Everybody knows what a box of detergent should cost and nobody wants to pay 40% more at a competitor," he says. By sheer massive buying power, with savings passed along to consumers, Wal-Mart will take a lot of the centre store grocery. Rut in differentiated goods, from lettuce to meat, bakery to meal replacement, the market may not tumble to Wal-Mart. To the extent that people are prepared to pay more for quality or even just differentiation, Wal-Mart will have trouble maintaining its winner-takes-it-all momentum, he suggests.

There is also the union question. In China, faced with the pro-union policy of the incumbent government, the company has agreed to work with them. Chinese unions are not trenchant opponents of management. Rather, they work at "promoting good relations between employers and workers," reports the Wall Street journal. If unions did capture Wal-Mart Supercentres, they might raise payroll costs and hinder the company's aggressive cost reduction strategy. Wal-Mart may remain hostile to unions in North America. It shut its Jonquière, Que. store after it was certified by the United Food and Commercial Workers union. The February 2005 shutdown sent a message that was undeniably clear. Bomb threats and temporary store closings followed, Bianco recalls. The cost of Wal-Mart's image was huge, but, as Bianco admits, "The allure of cut-rate prices and convenient locations is not easily resisted."
ProQuest  buying_power  Wal-Mart  grocery  Metro  Sobeys  Loblaws  fragmented_markets  retailers  CPG  winner-take-all 
july 2012 by jerryking
Opportunities for Entrepreneurs_Consolidating Fragmented Service Industries
Spring 1986 | New Management Vol. 3. Iss, 4; pg. 23. 5 pgs | Krauss, Carol Gibbons.

There are many opportunities for aspiring entrepreneurs to establish a successful business in the fragmented service industries. Reasons for fragmentation include: 1. the need for personal selling or delivery of a highly customized product, 2‘ local variations in environment or demand. and 3. inability to achieve economies of scale. Several possible strategies to overcome these fragmenting factors exist 1. Introduce a higher level of professionalism 2. Transform a service from a specialty into a commodity‘ 3. Separate portions of a mixed service and specialize in one aspect. 4. Change the delivery system by replacing some personal interaction with either automation or more customer participation To take advantage of these business opportunities. one must have a creative mind that is open to new organizational designs. The goal is to create a flexible formula that can be replicated
consolidation  entrepreneur  fragmentation  opportunities  personal_selling  small_business  start_ups  strategic_planning  economies_of_scale  fragmented_markets  roll_ups  professionalization 
july 2012 by jerryking
Think Small - WSJ.com
FEBRUARY 14, 2007 | Wall Street Journal | by RAJAN
VARADARAJAN. Article touting the merits of incremental--versus
radical-- approaches to innovation. Incremental innovations can: help
support radical innovations; play a major role in helping companies
enter new markets, by modifying existing products to suit new customers;
help take charge of fragmented industries -- those with lots of small,
regional competitors; help companies on their home turf (i.e. line
extensions); help a company increase the price premium on its products;
help companies neutralize the impact of competitors' innovations; help
companies respond to big changes in their industry.
innovation  radical  P&G  incrementalism  breakthroughs  fragmented_markets  small_wins  structural_change  taxonomy  new_markets  marginal_improvements  quick_wins 
january 2010 by jerryking
Create Your Own 'Big Bang' - WSJ.com
APRIL 6, 2004 | Wall Street Journal | By STEPHEN H. GOLDSTEIN.
How to spark and build a business ecosystem? following three approaches,
recently proven to be good starting points:

* Court a king. to win Wal-Mart over are standing at the head of the
line now.
* Advocate an ecosystem.
* Create a standard. In embryonic or fragmented markets, the way standards get set can be critical to the pace of market adoption and individual companies can usually play a role
in steering and setting standards.
growth  embryonic  start_ups  strategy  ecosystems  big_bang  measurements  standardization  technical_standards  jump-start  platforms  fragmented_markets  customer_adoption  market_risk  new_categories  howto  think_threes  category_killers  Play_Bigger 
january 2010 by jerryking
Intact Financial: Defensive, disciplined and eyeing acquisitions
Jan. 09, 2010 | The Globe and Mail | by Tara Perkins.
Canada's $36-billion property and casualty insurance sector, a
fragmented industry where the top five players hold only about one-third
of the market....Charles Brindamour, is the CEO of Intact Financial
Corp.(IFC-T ) Canada's biggest home, auto and business insurer. He saw
three main themes in 2009 that not only defined the year for his
industry, but also set the stage for the months ahead: the global
capital markets crunch that marked the start of last year, increasing
evidence that the weather is becoming less predictable, and the return
to optimism in capital markets. Weather patterns..."We've done much
work here on pricing, products and equipping our customer service
operations to deal with storms and water damage. And we're doing a lot
of work with our clients on prevention as well as climate change
adaptation". Opportunity for Pelmorex?
weather  CEOs  patterns  insurance  Intact_Financial  fragmented_markets  volatility  climate_change  catastrophes  natural_calamities  threats  capital_markets 
january 2010 by jerryking

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