Thorntons' Strategy over the Years

4024 Words17 Pages
Introduction A number of factors have contributed to the success and problems faced by Thorntons up until 2003. Over the years, the company seems to have lost focus on its original strategy based on product differentiation and spread itself too thin in pursuit of multiple objectives. It is clear that the values on which Thorntons was originally founded were the principal reasons for the company’s initial success in Britain. From the very beginning, a combination of the quality ingredients that Thorntons had used and the manufacturing expertise it had developed for its core products were the key reasons for its success. Indeed, upon originally launching itself in the United Kingdom’s confection industry, Thorntons succeeded in positioning…show more content…
Thorntons also expanded into the ice cream industry and introduced a children’s range. However, the new product lines lowered the image of the chocolates to simple “snacks” or “impulse buys”. In diversifying its product offerings, Thorntons was soon competing in a saturated market with big names such as Cadbury. Also negatively impacting the company was the fact that not all products were proven successful. Thorntons had little experience in the manufacture of ice cream and was soon producing multiple ‘mediocre’ products instead of several ‘superior’ products. Customers were no longer sure of the quality of Thorntons chocolate and as a result, sales performance was impacted. Although by offering a wide range of products Thorntons could have possibly appealed to a greater number of consumers (including teenagers and children), product offerings were not consistent and this demographic often preferred to stick with well known brands such as Cadbury or Nestle. Therefore, Thorntons’ image as a specialist “chocolatier” was seriously damaged. Another factor that has always affected Thorntons’ sales results was issues in seasonal sales variations; during certain years, seasonal demands were difficult to forecast and stock-outs occurred, while during other years, over production lead to waste. In order to remedy this difficulty, some preventative
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