National Hockey League a Retail Prospective Essay

2474 Words Nov 14th, 2015 10 Pages


Elizabeth Gray prepared this case under the supervision of Elizabeth M.A. Grasby solely to provide material for class discussion.
The authors do not intend to illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of a managerial situation. The authors may have disguised certain names and other identifying information to protect confidentiality.
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NHLEC relied on these large retailers to push crucial sales volume but the end result was scattered NHL merchandise and an inconsistent brand image presented to the consumer. Frequent buyer turnover, power struggles and turf wars among the buyers, and the sheer size of these retailers had all contributed to NHLEC’s difficulties in developing brand equity at a mass-market consumer level.
A New Approach

Wakefield had to find a way to convince large retailers that there was a better way to display and promote
NHL product. One potential solution would be to focus NHLEC’s selling efforts toward the general merchandise manager, rather than (and one step above) the individual buyer, encouraging a more coordinated purchase and display effort. Another option would be the introduction of the NHL’s own store. This flagship store would sell merchandise purchased from NHL licensees. This store would be used to illustrate to these large retailers the positive effects that a consistent NHL brand image could have on sales.

While the apparel industry experienced rapid growth throughout the 1980s, the recession in the early 1990s had hurt apparel sales (see Exhibits 3 and 4). Recovery from the recession had been gradual and it was a well-known fact that apparel sales were tied tightly to the overall level of economic activity (see Exhibit 5

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