Business Essay

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1. What is competition like in the North American wholesale club industry? Which of the five competitive forces is strongest and why? Use the information in Figures 3.4, 3.5, 3.6, 3.7, and 3.8 (and the related chapter discussions on pp. 57-70) to do a complete five-forces analysis of competition in the North American wholesale club industry. The competition among the North American wholesale clubs is quite prominent. All of the major three, Costco, Sam’s Club or BJ’s, try to accomplish lower prices by reducing their costs. They don’t buy expensive or impressive shelving units and most of the time display items on pallets. Aesthetically they keep cost down by not going overboard with interior design and comparatively have low labor costs. The strongest competitive force is the rivalry among sellers, buyers and suppliers. The possibility of these large wholesale companies being affected by potential new entrants is quite low. Because we are talking about significant amounts of quantities, the wholesale club industry will not be impacted by other industries offering substitute products. I think Supermarkets have a minimal competitive impact because they try to reach a different target market, even though Supermarkets and the wholesale club industry both carry similar products. As customers, we are always looking for the best deal and price, and the demand in this industry is very high. The ability to provide better prices hinges on the company’s relationship with its suppliers. 2. Do all three warehouse club rivals—Costco, Sam’s, and BJ’s Wholesale—have highly similar strategies? What differences in their strategies are apparent? Does one rival have a better strategy than the others? Does one rival have a somewhat weaker strategy than the other two? Costco, Sam’s Club, and BJ’s Wholesale have demonstrated their success in the wholesale industry. Out of the three

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