The 2020 Mid-Year Economic Update_long

Changing Channels, Part 2

This article is available to non-subscribers through online access below, or by purchasing the series, Changing Channels, in the MDM Store.

As reported in Part 1, tension between manufacturers and distributors has always been there -but the reasons for that tension have changed. Channel partners are navigating a new frontier that includes private-label branding, converging channels, pricing conflicts, the push of big-box retailers and national accounts into their back yards, and a changing customer base. In Part 2 of this article, we address best practices in manufacturer-distributor relationships.

One answer to manufacturer-distributor conflicts, MDM found in interviews for this article, is that distributors must focus on creating value for the customer and the supplier by homing in on core competencies. And manufacturers must find a balance of trade between high-volume distributors, integrated ...

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