Greg Thain

“share. The company’s stock price immediately fell by 26% as the move was widely hailed as a disaster for premium brands. But it was not; it was just the end of a premium brand being overpriced; the problem was that Marlboro had opened up too big of a price premium, opening the door for all kinds of competitors. The event precipitated the end of cigarette price wars because many competitors were unable to compete with a more affordable Marlboro. Within two years, Philip Morris’s stock had fully recovered. The Canadian cola market has demonstrated time and again the consumer’s willingness to switch from Coca-Cola or Pepsi to private label colas if the price differential were greater than $1 for a box of 12 cans. Opening too big a price differential begins a price war by increasing the volume that moves around the market because of price.”

Greg Thain, Store Wars: The Worldwide Battle for Mindspace and Shelfspace, Online and In-store
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