Loblaw Companies Limited: Preparing for Wal-Mart Supercenters
(16 pages of text)
In February 2007, Loblaw Companies Limited (Loblaw) was far and away the dominant food retailer in Canada with a market share of 35 per cent across its various retailing formats. As part of its long term retailing strategy and in a bid to reduce the impact of Wal-Mart Canada's entry into food retailing, in 2004 Loblaw began to build new The Real Canadian Superstores in Ontario and position them as blockers that resembled Wal-Mart's U.S. combination food and general merchandise superstores. It overhauled its entire logistical system to improve its cost structure and it brought in new senior executives in 2006. Unfortunately, The Real Canadian Superstores appeared to be disappointing some customers, retail analysts, industry experts and even former Loblaw executives. Meanwhile, Wal-Mart entered the retail food market in 2006 with distinctive emphasis on fresh produce and deli offerings on top of its low prices and wide assortment. The question for Loblaw's executive team was whether or not to make any strategic changes, and, if so, in what direction.
Canada, Large, 2007
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