The international transfer of store brand image

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This article argues that when a retailer internationalizes, rather than aiming to achieve an exact replication (standardization) of its domestic store image abroad, it should aim for a standardized positioning strategy. The distinction between the consumer perspective of image and the managerial perspective of positioning is an important construct, which to date has received little consideration in retail internationalization. Based on the case of Dia, the Spanish limited line grocery discounter owned by Carrefour, a consumer survey conducted in Spain (the home market) and Greece (a host market) measured the company's store brand image and that of local competitors. Results show that although consumer perceptions of brand image differ in the host market from those found in the domestic market, when the local competitive context is taken into account, both stores are found to be perceptually distinct from the competition and occupy a similar market position. This suggests that the managerial focus should be on achieving a standardized position in a foreign market rather than pure image replication.

Keywords: Grocery retailing; internationalization; retail image; retail positioning; standardization

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Institute for Retail Studies, University of Stirling, UK 2: EADA International Management Development Centre, Barcelona, Spain

Publication date: September 1, 2006

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