Brain Trust Panelists Respond to Family Dollar

Both Ryan Mathews and Paula Rosenblum called out how lack of internal alignment can reduce efficiencies with Paula stated that, even though customers don’t “know or care” whether retailers have alignment within their merchandising organizations, it can “spell the difference between making money or not” for the retailer.  If private and national brand assortments don’t make sense together, down go the sales. 

Ann Bieler echoed the need for a “holistic vision” rather than leaving it to category or department managers that have siloed accountability.  Frank Dell also called out the “downside” of the category management structure, which puts private label teams in “direct competition” with branded representatives.  He argued changes to retailer incentive structures that would create a “level playing field” between private brand and branded evaluation criteria.

James Tenser thinks the stakes are even higher since Family Dollar’s private brand push “reflects a strategic marketing priority for the chain – a manifestation of the total retail branding proposition.”  He liked the store brand and merchandising groups reporting up to the chief merchant but that begs for knowing where the chief merchant “weighs in.”  Ed Rosenbaum also liked Family Dollar’s brand organization realignment, stating that “nothing can be accomplished by not being able to voice concerns and work out differences together.”