Edited by Katrijn Gielens and Els Gijsbrechts
This chapter focuses on two important contemporary concepts and practices within the realm of manufacturers–retailer relationships and strategic interactions: Category Management (CM) and Category Captainship (CC). Category management is a managerial philosophy and organizational concept in retailing that shapes a retailer’s tactical and store-level decisions. At the heart of this management and organizational practice is understanding and treating product categories as strategic business units. This chapter discusses (evolutions in) the CM process, and how CM impacts the main actors of consumer packaged goods marketing channels – manufacturers, retailers, and consumers. It reviews the advantages and drawbacks of the phenomenon of category captainship within the CM movement, as reflected by its predicted and observed impacts on the retailer, the category captain, consumers, and competing manufacturers using the common retailer. Finally, it considers the outstanding managerial questions in today’s retailing environment and outlines related avenues for future research and changes in practice.
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