SEOUL, Sept. 10 (Korea Bizwire) – As Homeplus has changed ownership from England’s Tesco to the all-Korean MBK Partners, the company seems to be planning an aggressive revamp of its business practices with a focus on improvements. This could lead to severe competition in the industry.
Considering the past, MBK might try to elevate the value of Homeplus in a short period of time and sell it again. Thus it is expected that MBK will go through tough restructuring and start aggressive marketing, resulting in competition between distribution enterprises.
One of the noteable services that Homeplus currently provides is a one-hour ‘quick’ delivery service. When a customer purchases a product from the Gangseo store online (www.homeplus.co.kr), the product is delivered by motorcycle within an hour of purchase. The service is currently provided from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. only at the Gangseo store, but is expected to expand to other metropolitan areas. Plans for mobile services are also in the works.
As Homeplus’ actions speak loud and clear, its largest competitors, Emart and LOTTE Mart, are also finding ways to make a strong impression on consumers. The timing couldn’t be better, with Chuseok, the Korean Thanksgiving holiday, coming up.
Emart will concentrate on its ‘No Brand’ and ‘Peacock’ private brands, which have a competitive edge of low prices and high quality.
Shinsegae Department store, the ‘mother ship’ of Emart, also plans to provide quick delivery services during the holiday season. The company will increase its number of refrigerator trucks by 15 percent to strengthen fresh food delivery capabilities.
LOTTE Mart is also anxious, as it has to compete with Emart and Homeplus while it is under a dispute over management. However, industry officials predict that LOTTE will soon go through with organizational reforms.
Targeting the holiday season, LOTTE Mart adopted the ‘X Pad’, which stops refrigerated meat from spoiling. Also, LOTTE Department Store is providing a service called ‘C.A.R.E.’ The name consists of the first letters of ‘Complain Zero’, ‘No-Accident’, ‘Real-Time’ tracking and ‘Exclusive Service’, which LOTTE promises to provide to its customers.
In addition, other distribution enterprises are targeting the holiday season with various delivery services.
Hyundai Department store strengthened their fresh food delivery system, while SK Planet’s 11 street is concentrating on the quality of goods by visiting production areas and providing refunds for fresh food in cases of customer dissatisfaction. Auction is providing a ‘plural shipment’, which delivers up to 30 places with only one order.
By Francine Jung (email@example.com)