Control of the Supply Chain Networks by Supermarket Chains.

Area of Study: Retail-Supermarkets in UK

Title: Investigation into control of the supply chain networks by supermarket chains.


Many thanks to Kofi Narh-Saam for your clear guidance and to colleagues in my group for your kind support, all without which this report would not have materialised. To my wife Shamie- thanks for putting up with the long hours of silence during my research and for the enduring isolation from your favourite TV programmes.


Item Page Number

Executive Summary 4

Introduction 5
Objectives 5
Literature review 5

Methodology 6

Findings 6

Analysis 6-10

Conclusion 10

References 11-12

Abstract or summary

The focus of the following analysis is to investigate the various means by which superstores control the value chain to gain competitive advantage over rivals. It is an examination of the supply chain network covering manufacturing, warehousing, logistics and distribution functions and based on the big four supermarket chains(Tesco, ASDA, Sainsbury’s, and Morrison’s).


This report is premised on the fact that competition at the till, coupled with changing consumer demands particularly during economic down turn, push supermarkets to adopt cost leadership strategies which involve sourcing products at increasingly low cost in order to offer value to customers at competitive prices. Discount retailers such as Lidl use value pricing strategies to attract brand switching consumers at the expense of supermarket chains. Consequently, the big 5 supermarket chains have repositioned their offering by focusing on cost leadership

Supermarket chains focus on the efficiency of their supply chains to deliver value to the customer at minimum cost often at the expense of manufacturers, farmers and third-party logistics companies.   They leverage the scale and scope of their massive...