WAWA, Pa. -- Wawa Inc. has landed on Kantar Retail's 2013 PoweRanking, taking the No. 8 spot among companies with sales under $10 billion and the No. 29 spot overall. It is the only convenience retailer to make this year's list.
Wawa, the Pennsylvania-based chain of more than 630 convenience stores, was recognized for being collaborative and innovative in merchandising, and having clearly branded itself.
Manufacturers specifically cited Wawa's omni-shopper relationship as a key strength. Omni-channel retailers carry merchandise that is customer-centric and is not specific to any channel.
Kantar Retail's annual PoweRanking survey kicked off in 1997 and originated from the company's industry benchmarking studies on category management and trade promotion management. The objective of the PoweRanking study is to research and benchmark how retailers and manufacturers view each other in the most important areas of the manufacturer-retailer relationship.
Specifically, the goals of the yearly research are to:
- Identify the best manufacturers and retailers, as evaluated by their trading partners;
- Provide insight into what makes them “the best;”
- Define the importance of key metrics between trading partners; and
- Highlight areas for improvement.
For this year's study, more than 500 retailers and manufacturers responded to customized questionnaires. Retailers were asked to rank manufacturers on criteria that falls into two broad areas: strategic and business fundamentals. Manufacturers were asked to rank retailers on similar criteria.
The 2013 PoweRanking report includes an overall PoweRanking Composite, created by weighting the three strategic rankings equally with the five business fundamental rankings -- placing greater importance on the strategic rankings. This reflects the importance of sound strategy as an overall driving force in business performance, according to the study. Among retailers, Walmart posted the best PoweRanking Composite this year.
"The changes in the retail landscape that seemed temporary and, in many cases, economic downturn-driven have achieved permanence," the study stated. "Retailers and manufacturers alike are grappling with a polarized and more demanding shopper base that is increasingly aware of prices and competitive offers. Diversified, specialized and more capable competition has developed in almost every trading area and category -- all against the backdrop of a slow-growth world. The digital ecosystem is reshaping not only how and where shoppers buy, but also their path to purchase irrespective of where the sale happens."