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Quick Response and Retailer Effort

Author

Listed:
  • Harish Krishnan

    () (Sauder School of Business, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia V6T 1Z2, Canada)

  • Roman Kapuscinski

    () (Ross School of Business, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109)

  • David A. Butz

    () (MDContent, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48104)

Abstract

The benefits of supply chain innovations such as quick response (QR) have been extensively investigated. This paper highlights a potentially damaging impact of QR on retailer effort. By lowering downstream inventories, QR may compromise retailer incentives to exert sales effort on a manufacturer's product and may lead instead to greater sales effort on a competing product. Manufacturer-initiated quick response can therefore backfire, leading to lower sales of the manufacturer's product and, in some cases, to higher sales of a competing product. Evidence from case studies and interviews shows that some manufacturers view high retailer inventory as a means of increasing retailer commitment ("a loaded customer is a loyal customer"). By implication, manufacturers should recognize the effect we highlight in this paper: the potential of QR to lessen retailer sales effort. We show that relatively simple distribution contracts such as minimum-take contracts, advance-purchase discounts, and exclusive dealing, when adopted in conjunction with QR, can remedy the distortionary impact of QR on retailers' incentives. In two recent antitrust cases we find evidence that, consistent with our theory, manufacturers adopted exclusive dealing at almost the same time that they were making QR-type supply chain improvements.

Suggested Citation

  • Harish Krishnan & Roman Kapuscinski & David A. Butz, 2010. "Quick Response and Retailer Effort," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 56(6), pages 962-977, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:inm:ormnsc:v:56:y:2010:i:6:p:962-977
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    File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1287/mnsc.1100.1154
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Xiao, Tiaojun & Xu, Tiantian, 2014. "Pricing and product line strategy in a supply chain with risk-averse players," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 156(C), pages 305-315.
    2. Robert Swinney, 2011. "Selling to Strategic Consumers When Product Value Is Uncertain: The Value of Matching Supply and Demand," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 57(10), pages 1737-1751, October.
    3. Sun, Jiong & Debo, Laurens, 2014. "Sustaining long-term supply chain partnerships using price-only contracts," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 233(3), pages 557-565.
    4. Jin, Yannan & Wang, Sujuan & Hu, Qiying, 2015. "Contract type and decision right of sales promotion in supply chain management with a capital constrained retailer," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 240(2), pages 415-424.

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