Marketing is defined by the American Marketing Association as “the activity, set of institutions, and processes for creating, communicating, delivering, and exchanging offerings that have value for customers, clients, partners, and society at large.” Marketing is used to identify the customer, satisfy the customer, and keep the customer. With the customer as the focus of its activities, marketing management is one of the major components of business management. The adoption of marketing strategies requires businesses to shift their focus from production to the perceived needs and wants of their customers as the means of staying profitable. Marketing function is very vital for the success of business, and it applies even in the case of Bhatbhateni Super Store.
Bhat-Bhateni is a leading supermarket and departmental store chain in Nepal. With an impressive growth history over 25 years Bhat-Bhateni has developed a reputation for continuous improvements, every day low price and a product offer second to none. There are currently five stores in Kathmandu, located in Bhat-Bhateni (head office store) and a new superstore was opened in September 2008 in Maharajgunj. Other 3 stores are opened in Koteshwor, Chuchepati, Boudha and Krishna Galli, Patan in June/July 2011. The Pokhara store is due to open by the end of year 2012.
The stores are open from 7:30am to 8:30pm,7 days per week and offer a full range of 100,000 products from 600 local and international suppliers. More than 10,000 people visit the stores daily and benefit from a 7-day return/exchange policy. With over 800 combined store staff, consistent merchandising and assured customer service is guaranteed. Bhat-Bhateni Group operates as a private limited company. It has been a successful family business since the establishment in 1984 and has been the largest tax payer in the retail sector for the last five years in Nepal.
Mr. & Mrs. Min B. Gurung started Bhat-Bhateni cold store in 1984. This ordinary ‘single shutter’ store has since transformed to become two leading supermarket and departmental stores in Kathmandu. The opening of the Maharajgunj superstore in September 2008 set the current benchmark for the business, with over 800 staff helping customers chose between 100,000 products across a 2,15,000 sq. ft. sales area. An ambitious expansion plan will see many new stores in Kathmandu and across Nepal over the next few years and a new warehouse and wholesale unit opening soon at Baluwatar. The Bhat-Bhateni story has only just started. This particular store is the biggest of all kinds of departmental stores in the nation. It deals with possibly everything from grocery to apparels, jewelry to ice cream parlors; just name anything and they have it. From world class brands to cheap local brands, they have everything.
The objectives of this report are:
1. To identify the prospects of Bhatbhateni Super Market/Store.
2. To identify the problems of Bhatbhateni Super Market/Store.
Review of Literature:
In general, the product is defined as a “thing produced by labor or effort” or the “result of an act or a process”. A good, idea, method, information, object, or service that is the end result of a process and serves as a need or want satisfier. It is usually a bundle of tangible and intangible attributes (benefits, features, functions and uses) that a seller offers to buyer for purchase. In case of Bhatbhateni Store, it deals with possibly everything from grocery to apparels, jewelry to ice cream parlours; just name anything and they have it. From world class brands to cheap local brands, they have everything. Bhat-Bhateni offers a full range of 100,000 products from 600 local and international suppliers. The motto Bhatbhateni used quite a few years back, “Noon dekhi Soon samma” (i.e. everything from salt to gold), speaks about the diverse varieties of products offered by the store. Hence, Bhatbhateni serves its customers with varieties of products from everyday use to highly luxurious and expensive products. It is thus a large retail establishment with an extensive assortment in variety and range of goods, organized into separate departments. All departments are housed under the same roof to facilitate buying, customer service, merchandising and control.
Its product range includes:
1. Glassware, plasticware
4. Electrical appliances
1. Sports & toys
2. Gifts, cards & flowers
1. Ladieswear, kurthas & saris
2. Jewellery (gold & silver).
Hence, Bhatbhateni serves its customers with varieties of products from everyday use to highly luxurious and expensive products. Bhat-Bhateni offers a full range of 100,000 products from 600 local and international suppliers, including a wide range of groceries, fresh fruits and vegetables; a broad range of leading international liquor, toiletries and cosmetics brands; and an extensive choice of kitchenware, clothing, sports, toys and electrical items. Furthermore, both premises include excellent value jewellery stores that offer a wide range of gold and silver ornaments in both traditional and modern styles.
Place refers to the means by which your customer acquires your product. This includes the actual place it is purchased (the shop, the telephone, the web page, the warehouse) as well as the actual route of distribution. Most consumer goods are purchased from a retailer, who purchases them from a wholesaler/distributor, who purchases them from the manufacture. If the goods were imported there might be more merchants in this distribution chain. Sometimes, this distribution chain can be bypassed or leapt over. It is an important marketing mix tool. Management needs to distribute products to the right place by selecting and managing channels and by developing an efficient distribution system. There are currently five stores in Kathmandu, located in Bhat-Bhateni (head office store) and a new superstore was opened in September 2008 in Maharajgunj. Other 3 stores are opened in Koteshwor, Chuchepati, Boudha and Krishna Galli, Patan in June/July 2011. All of these stores are in the crowded and busy parts of the valley which ensures good flow of customers round the year. Selection of facility have been done very carefully. The Pokhara store is due to open by the end of year 2011.
Details of physical facilities or location (place):
Bhat-Bhateni Head Office
P.O. Box 320
Bhat-Bhateni Maharajgunj, Kathmandu
Narayan Gopal Chowk
Bhat-Bhateni Koteshwor, Kathmandu
Bhat-Bhateni Krishna Galli, Pulchwok
The locations selected by Bhatbhateni group to locate its sales stores are very lucrative in terms of customer flow. The ground floor offers a wide range of fresh food and vegetables and a broad range of leading international Liquor, Toiletries and Cosmetics brands. The remaining floors offer a wealth of choice including Kitchenware, Clothing, Sports & Toys and Electricals, with convenient escalators and air-conditioning on all floors. The Maharajgunj superstore includes a shirting & suiting service and a promotional area to display carefully selected promotions. In addition, furniture & fixtures is a new exciting offering being introduced recently. Both premises benefit from the co-location of an excellent value jewellery stores that offer a wide range of gold and silver items in both traditional and modern ornaments. Parking arrangements are available free on the premises and a secure locker system available to keep personal belongings. Restaurants, bank & cash machine and dry cleaning services in the vicinity makes Bhat-Bhateni a one-stop shopping destination.
In ordinary usage, price is the quantity of payment or compensation given by one party to another in return for goods or services. In modern economies, prices are generally expressed in units of some form of currency. It is a value that will purchase a definite quantity, weight or other measure of a good or service. Super stores like Bhatbhateni should be very careful in pricing their goods. There are many outside influences that affect profitability and a retailer’s bottom line. Setting the right price is a crucial step toward achieving that profit. Retailers are in business to make a profit, but figuring out what and how to price products may not come easily. Regardless of the pricing strategy used, the retail price of the products should more than cover the cost of obtaining the goods plus the expenses related to operating the business. A retailer simply cannot succeed in business if they continue to sell their products below cost.
Bhatbhateni has been very flexible with its pricing strategy. It has been providing quality goods at a very reasonable price. Initially, people viewed Bhatbhateni as a shopping destination for rich and affluent class only. But later Bhatbhateni has been focusing even on middle and lower-middle class of people by providing goods at an affordable and reasonable price. Thus due to its pricing strategy, Bhatbhateni has been successful in drawing a large number of customers within the value. 1. Promotion:
Promotion is one of the four elements of marketing mix (product, price, promotion, place). It is the communication link between sellers and buyers for the purpose of influencing, informing, or persuading a potential buyer’s purchasing decision. It is the advancement of a product, idea, or point of view through publicity and/or advertising. It is the stimulation of sales achieved through contests, demonstrations, discounts, demonstrations, exhibition or trade-sales, games and giveaways, point-of-sale displays and merchandising, special offers and similar activities. Bhatbhateni has also been focusing on promoting its stores. Fundamentally, there are three basic objectives of promotion. These are: 1. To present information to consumers as well as others. 2. To increase demand.
3. To differentiate a product.
4. To attract new customers and also customers going to other retail/department stores. There are different ways to promote a product in different areas of media. Promoters use internet advertisement, special events, endorsements, and newspapers to advertise their product. Many times with the purchase of a product there is an incentive like discounts, free items, or a contest. This is to increase the sales of a given product. Bhatbhateni has been trying to promote its stores mainly by providing quality goods and services at a very reasonable price. Due to this very reason, in just 25 years Bhat-Bhateni has grown from a ‘single shutter’ 120 sq. ft. cold store to become the leading supermarket and departmental store chain in Nepal, and the highest tax payer in the sector for the last five consecutive years with more than 10,000 customers daily. It has also been focusing on corporate social responsibility to build its image among the people.
1. Corporate social responsibility by BBSM:
Much of Bhat-Bhateni’s success can be subscribed to the founders’, Mr. Min B. Gurung and family, vision for continuous improvements and growth in order to support local development with current employment of over 800 staff, including several from families of political martyrs and indigenous people.The commitment to give back to the local community is underlined by the funding of the entire emergency wing of the Teaching Hospital in Maharajgunj currently under construction. Mr. Min B. Gurung and family also donated money, clothes, food, cooking utensils and blankets to the Dubhekol (1995) and Sungdel (2003), Khotang flood victims. An ambulance has also recently been donated to Tamu Boudha Sewa Samittee and the company funded the construction of primary school in Khotang village. Furthermore, Bhat-Bhateni has funded construction of Ganesh Temple (Khotang), Sai Centre (Narayan Chaur) and Shiva Temple (Haridwar, India) and constructed the green parks in Maharajgunj, Baluwatar and Koteswor. Since June 2009, Bhat-Bhateni has been promoting the “Just Say No to Plastic Bags” campaign along with Kathmandu University and Nagarik & República. Customers wishing to use plastic bags will be charged Rs. 1 per bag while the environment friendly bag will be available for Rs. 20.
The proceeds will contribute towards improving the environment. Students from both St. Xavier School and Ideal English Higher Secondary School have been participating in this campaign. Hence this can also be regarded as a promotional strategy to build goodwill and good image of the Bhatbhateni stores by doing good acts for the betterment of society.
Bhatbhateni Super Store is very popular among the Nepalese customers because of the facilities it provides to them. It provides quality branded goods in reasonable price which attracts the customers. One can get a variety of goods under the single roof which definitely saves a lot of time of the customers and in the same time, it provides a wide range of options. Under the same roof, goods of various quality and standards are available focusing upon various consumer groups. Workers are treated as jewels of Bhatbhateni stores. They are well-trained to be customer friendly and cooperative. This also ensures customer loyalty. The major prospects and advantages of Bhatbhateni Stores can be summarized in the following points: 1. Bhatbhateni Store gives shopping convenience
Bhatbhateni Store enables a customer to purchase all his requirements under one roof. Time is saved as there is no need to visit several shops. 2. Bhatbhateni Store has wide range of products
In Bhatbhateni Store, a customer makes his best choice depending upon his requirement. This best choice is possible because there are wide range of products and brands available. 3. Bhatbhateni Store buys bulk goods for cheap
Goods purchased in bulk are cheaper, because of the large discount allowed by the manufacturers and savings in freight, loading and unloading charges. The goods are bought in bulk from various sources at lower costs. 4. Bhatbhateni Store provide various facilities
Bhatbhateni Stores not only sell goods but also provide various facilities like drinking water, parking, recreation hall, etc. 5. Bhatbhateni Store does huge publicity
Bhatbhateni Store has large funds at its disposal. It can carry on advertisement and publicity on a large scale. It can avail of the benefits of services of the experts. 6. Bhatbhateni Store has a large turnover
Due to the central location, shopping convenience, extensive advertisement, provision of services, etc., a large number of customers are attracted. So, the turnover is usually very high. 7. Bhatbhateni Store results in a higher efficiency
Bhatbhateni Store appoints experts for buying, advertising, accounting, etc. Similarly, skilled and qualified salesmen and other members of staff are appointed, which results in a higher efficiency. 8. Bhatbhateni Store can raise finance easily
Bhatbhateni Stores is a business organization in the form of a limited company. Hence, they can easily raise the necessary finance for running the company. 9. Bhatbhateni Store gives facility to inspect goods
Bhatbhateni Store enables the customers to touch, feel and check the finishing quality goods before any purchase. 10. Bhatbhateni Store earns goodwill & reputation
Bhatbhateni Stores enjoy a lot of reputation and goodwill because of their efficient services to the customers.
Bhatbhateni, as other departmental stores, also has few problems. Major problems faced by the store can be outlined as follows: 1. BBSM has to invest a lot of money in the stock.
2. Various strikes disrupt the supply chain of Bhatbhateni stores. 3. Fluctuation in prices adversely affects the operation of these business houses as they go for bulk purchases. 4. The cost of advertisement and publicity is much higher. 5. Customers are not given individual attention because these establishments are too large. 6. Loadshedding has emerged to be one of the major problems, as a lot of money is being wasted in alternative energy production. 7. Stores sometimes become over-crowded.
8. Lack of proper knowledge among workers about the varieties of products and brands available sometimes leads to confusion. 9. Parking problems, especially during weekend evenings.
10. People’s perception that Bhatbhateni is only for rich and affluent class. 11. People living at a distant place cannot avail the advantages of the store because these are located at a central of the cities.
The purpose of the study is to figure out the main objectives of establishment of Bhatbhateni Super Store. The aim of our study is also to know the secret behind the success of Bhatbhateni Stores. Through our research we have been able to find out that from the very beginning of its establishment, Bhatbhateni has tried to maintain its strong position in market and management efficiently. To collect the related information, we browsed through various websites, talked directly with the staff and customers, referred to published articles etc. We also found out that Bhat-Bhateni is a leading supermarket and departmental store chain in Nepal. With an impressive growth history over 25 years Bhat-Bhateni has developed a reputation for continuous improvements, every day low price and a product offer second to none. It has also been observed that the management of the super store is very impressive. Staffs were found to be very friendly, cooperative and disciplined as well. Customers also seem satisfied with the products they purchase.
Its success over the years explains the level of satisfaction of the customers. Complains and grievances rarely come to the notice of the management. As it offers the varieties of products under the same roof, customers find it an easy and convenient shopping destination. More than 10,000 people visit the stores daily and benefit from a 7-day return/exchange policy. With over 800 combined store staff, consistent merchandising and assured customer service is guaranteed. For our study, the problems faced by the Bhatbhateni Super Store are equally important. The major problems related with the stores have already been discussed in the previous section. Our study and in-depth analysis shows that the strikes and bandhs resulting from the uncertain political scenario has been the major problem for the store. It has been greatly affecting the operations of the store and in the mean time they incur loss to the company. Load-shedding is another big problem for the store.
While preparing this report, we could make an in-depth analysis of the prospects and the problems of the leading supermarket and departmental store chain in Nepal, Bhatbhateni Super Market and Super Store. We could find out a lot of advantages and prospects related with departmental stores like Bhatbhateni. We also tried out the reasons and causes behind those advantages. We studied the cause-and-effect relationship between various advantages and disadvantages related with the store. From our study, we came to know that better strategies and good management are the key factors to run the business. Similarly, we could also learn that how small factors can also incur huge loss to such organizations. The management has to be very careful and responsive towards the changing environmental trends and have to adopt suitable strategies accordingly. Such organizations should be ready to change with the changes in political, social, economical and technological changes. Right decisions and tactful strategies in the proper time has made Bhatbhateni the most popular shopping store in town despite the environmental changes and problems faced by it. This study will help other business personnel know how to run business smoothly and achieve good profits in the similar scenario.
9. Academic course books of marketing.