Conducting a Strategic Review of the Demand Chain for a Leading Paper Manufacturer
The client, a leading player in the paper industry with their manufacturing base in Southern India, has four depots and four branches across the country. However, the client had certain key issues in the demand chain. They were servicing a large number of dealers, and there was a fragmented demand. There was a lack of end-consumer relationships. They had a wide range of product offerings provided in various sizes, and there was a lack of communication and smooth information flow between the factory, corporate office and branches.
This resulted in poor service levels, and ultimately in dissatisfied dealers. It also caused operational problems in co-ordination and manufacturing and high levels of operational complexity due to the wide range of products and numerous dealers.
The client requested UC to review the demand chain and suggest strategies and recommendations on the following:
- Distribution channel
- Sales and marketing organisation structure
- Sales and marketing information technology architecture.
To review the demand chain for the client, UC adopted the following approach:
- Analysed the dealers based on various marketing, operational and strategic parameters and rationalised the dealer base -
1) Segmented them into ‘true friends’, ‘fleeting friends’ and ‘strangers’
2) Provided recommendations for differentiated service levels for each segment
- Analysed existing product segments and rationalised the product base -
1) Identified new product segments to focus upon
2) Identified the regions and application segments to be targeted for the current and future segments
3) Defined the overall promotion and positioning strategy for the products
- Defined the organisation and reporting structure to be adopted based on the scope of activities -
1) Identified the job responsibilities and profiles of every entity in the structure
- Provided an information technology blueprint that highlighted the modules to be adopted by the marketing department
- Conducted analysis on the imports of various countries to provide an international perspective and identify future target markets.
The client received a detailed review of the demand chain of paper. The organisation and reporting structure was also well-defined. A clearly articulated marketing and distribution strategy with a focus on the stratification of dealers based on the profitability, strength of relationships and strategic importance was delivered.