Quaker Oats and Snapple no.
These offerings provided transportation at shorter distances and resulted in less-predictable, higher-risk cash flow for the Northeast-based railroads. Despite protracted negotiations with individual distributors and distributor councils, no channel rationalization was achieved.
About the author Laraine Spector is a principal at Midway Strategy Group, is a marketing consulting firm providing comprehensive quantitative and qualitative analytical tools to companies marketing their products and services.
When Quaker sold Snapple to Michael Weinstein and his colleagues, the brand was in trouble: We inherited a brand in a deep sales slide, losing 20 percent annually, and a demoralized organization. The company was regarded as innovative, pioneering the hot package process for teas, which would later become the category standard, and developing novel glass-front vending machines and coolers to display its unique wider mouth bottles.
Then, innew marketing programs flopped, and Quaker plunged into a huge free sampling program to get a better grasp of Snapple's market.
Nor do I think it was a case of a nimble upstart outflanking a lumbering corporate behemoth.