Capitalising on new markets in Eastern Europe
In 2001 the Swiss/German Metro Group opened its first two stores in Moscow. It led the way among several other store groups that were planning to expand into Russia and Eastern Europe. These included Auchan from France, OBI and Marktkauf from Germany and Wal-Mart from the US.
Working with our client, an international trade and distribution specialist in the retail sector, we ascertained that these groups would eventually take a major share of business within key Eastern European cities. By gaining an early foothold, they would boost their sales and market share.
The key task was to set up a structure for our client to service such accounts and to secure a 100% listing in all new stores in Russia and throughout Eastern Europe.
What we did
A key account management (KAM) system was set up using experience and know-how gained at the client’s HQ in Germany. A local sales manager was then assigned the KAM responsibility and sent for on-the-job training in Germany and Austria.
Contact was made with the head offices of all the store groups that planned to set up in Russia and other Eastern European countries, and a series of joint presentations between the client’s local and head office KAM teams was made. The presentations made clear that the client was already present in Eastern Europe and keen to cooperate with the store groups’ plans for expansion into that area.
When the store groups opened, deals were negotiated to secure exclusivity and promotional support during the first 12 months, helping to demonstrate the client’s support and commitment to working with the groups.
The client achieved 100% penetration into all new outlets that opened in Russia during the next three years, and established an ongoing dialogue with the store groups for other planned expansion in Eastern Europe which still exists today.