One of the most significant strength of the company which has sustained its performance over years of existence is its overall business and marketing strategy as well as approach to food preparation One of the main ways the company has sought to gain competitive strength and differentiation is by promoting its food offering as being good for you and its business as being ethical Datamonitor 2008 2 By establishing kitchens directly in its shops Pret is able to prepare handmade food and deliver it to customers fresh each morning with unsold food being offered to charity at the end of the day Pret 2017c Moreover Pret is carefully sourcing ingredients for its food by only establishing relationship with suppliers that have highest possible levels of animal welfare environmental stewardship and ethical farming Pret 2017d Pret also aims at contributing zero waste to the landfill by donating unused food to homeless charities utilising sustainable and recyclable packaging and training employees to reduce the number of napkins and plastic bags offered to customers Marati 2012 Lastly Pret devotes significant amount of resources for employees training and even established training academy which has helped to increase profits during recession It Is Rigorous 2011 Marketing strategy of Pret also imposes some weaknesses Firstly the company incurs a lot of costs associated with loss of unsold food Although it is being given to charities which improves company's image and makes it more sustainable in the eyes of the consumers it results in losses on the company's account Its sourcing strategy also implies careful selection of sustainable products which are usually high priced resulting in high final products prices
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While Pret can not be considered as fast-food chain it still has got a lot of competitors in terms of price range and quality of food with many fast-food restaurants also providing healthy options Hosie 2017 Moreover Pret’s sourcing approach does not allow it to significantly diversify its products portfolio as time money and resources are needed to do so, therefore, the company's offered range is limited Furthermore Pret has still weak global presence which does not allow the company to significantly benefit from economies of scale Finally Pret has been criticized for the inconsistency of its healthy food promise with actual amount of sugar and salt in some of its products Shooter 2011 The most significant opportunity for Pret is that global consumers became increasingly proactive and progressive in their approaches to health and wellness Forbes 2015 with younger consumers being more health-conscious than previous generations Gustafson 2017 Thus concerns of customers for healthier lifestyles and the environment became driving forces for formation of food buying behavior Ghvanidze et al 2017 Consequently Pret is able to expand its operations to those countries where consumers also demonstrate similar food consumption behavioral trends
Second opportunity for Pret is to establish deeper electronic conversations with target consumers since conversations about brands and nutritional aspects significantly impact brand characteristics evaluation and thus ultimately affects buying behaviour Liu and Lopez 2016 Therefore internationalisation will be more effective to the countries where the technological advancement is more superior Finally since Pret s strategy concerns sustainable sourcing and production countries with more developed and flexible sustainable supply chains would be more reasonable to internationalise as this will support business performance The major threat of Pret is vast number of competitors both direct and indirect Large fast food giants such as McDonalds KFC or Burger King and others have significantly much power in terms of economies of scale Moreover new healthy fast food chains such as Cava Grill Salad and Go Lyfe Kitchen are developing rapidly satisfying growing demand for healthier food alternatives Garfield 2017 The natural food approach of Pret as well as recipes can easily be replicated by those competitors who have more resources to diversify product range thus Pret can lose its competitive advantage very quickly Lab grown Houser 2017 and 3D printed Fussell 2016 food are also evolving rapidly as well as proving to be healthier alternatives to fast food thus becoming direct competitors to Pret Finally since Pret is emphasising sustainable approach any divergence from it can be regarded extremely bad by customers and consequently damage brand image Therefore the company must only choose the country where the same sustainable approach to production is possible Macro Analysis Country Selection The country selected for Internalisation is Germany The SWOT analysis of Pret signifies that the company's best route for international expansion will be in those countries which would not be gradually different in terms of culture with the UK This is because people in such countries will value similarly the fresh and healthy food prepared daily in Pret As can be seen from the comparison of UK and Germany according to Hofstede s dimensions Figure 2 countries do not significantly vary in their cultures
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