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Lifefont The Case For RetailDriver

Solution Id Length Case Author Case Publisher
1996 618 Words (3 Pages) F. Asis Martinez-Jerez, Karim Fakhry Harvard Business School : 106005
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Lifefont, founded in 1907, has two operating segments, namely: Lifefont Consumer Product and Lifefont Life Sciences. One of the main features of the company had been its decentralized management system. The Lifefont Consumer Segment was composed of five different franchises operating as a separate entity with its manufacturing facilities and sales force. The segment faced tough competition from the already established players, along with mounting pressures from retailers and lessened product differentiation in the eyes of the consumers. Hence, given the environment in which the company operated, it was imperative that the company changed its strategy from one being focused on innovation and branding to strengthening relations with trade. Promotion, one of the 4P's of marketing, became essential, which gave rise to the project called RetailDriver.

Case Study Questions Answers

Launched in 1999, the RetailDriver project faced significant challenges not only during the development stage but as well as during the implementation phase. John Kaufman, CIO and vice president of information technology at Lifefont Energy Drinks, after one year of project's implementation, analyzed whether it had proved itself as an effective sales tool? Did it meet the goals on which its development was funded? Whether the project had been aligned with the company's initiative targeting capital-efficient, profitable growth? The issues identified during the development phase ranged from issues such as identifying much more work was needed rather than simple customization of the tool, requirement collection phase wasn't fully optimized, the list of bugs kept on expanding, and managing the workload became an issue. These issues led to the development timeline being affected, and hence, the system which was supposed to be operational by the fiscal year 2003 was postponed till the next year. The ROPS module, which was one of the key features, was also put on hold to meet the timelines. After its first operational year, various stakeholders had differing opinions. Finance and sales management appreciated the improved control and visibility of promotional spending while the sales representative complained that the system added to extra workload without yielding any advantage over the previous processes.

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