Competitors

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2. Competitors

2.1 Direct Competitors

Being part of the Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) market, Eu Yan Sang faces direct competition from large chain retailers like Hockhua and neighbourhood medical halls like Yan Chai Tong Medical Hall. They are direct competitors because they compete in the same market sector of TCM retailing and also offer a similar product range.

2.2Indirect Competitors

Indirect competitors will include Western pharmacies like Watson and Guardian, supermarkets carrying healthcare products, various health treatments, like acupuncture, reflexology and health spas. They are indirect competitors because they compete for the same consumer dollar and are able to satisfy the same needs. [pic]

Figure 2.1 Strategic Group Map
[pic]
Figure 2.2 Perceptual Map
2.3Competitor’s Strengths, Weaknesses and their Competitive Strategy

2.3.1Hockhua

Hockhua is considered part of the strategic group of Eu Yan Sang as they also carry a wide range of products focusing on providing consumers with quality TCM products. Like Eu Yan Sang, they are also a large chain retailer with 41 TCM retail outlets spanning over Singapore, carrying their own in-house products. Both brands also have their own manufacturing factories handling their in-house products. Hockhua started its business in 1986, have 25 years of history and provides more than 3000 different health food products [17].

Strengths
Hockhua continuously train their employees, to enhance their professional knowledge in order to be able to serve their customers better [18]. They also take up the role of an educator, educating their customers on TCM and their usefulness. This attracts consumers to continue visiting their outlets. Hockhua set up companies to responsible for the import, distribution, management, production, processing and cultivation [17].They create their own in-house products and this helps them to monitor the entire supply chain, from production and processing to retail, helping to ensure quality and also to cut operation costs [19].

The Straits Times reported that Hockhua won Singapore Superbrand award in 2009, this further shows that they achieved recognition for their branding excellence [20]. Hockhua health products are manufactured with rigorous adherence to the GMP (Good Manufacturing Practice) standards. Food safety is addressed throughout the whole process, which provides consumers confidence in their products. Hockhua also focuses on research and development for their herbal product, constantly improving the quality of the product at enviable standards and developing new products. In addition, their website is well updated with the latest information, this helps to keep their customers informed and provides sufficient information for consumers interested in TCM products. Although consumers will not use the data as immediate input into their purchase decision, the exposure obtained from the experience will definitely influence their purchase decision if the need arises.

Weaknesses
Eu Yan Sang is well known household brand in Asia and are increasing more regionally recognized as it has expanded to Hong Kong, China and Malaysia. They have a long history behind their brand and is widely recognized as a trusted heritage brand. Hockhua however, is not that regionally recognised and only expanded to Malaysia in 2007 [19]. Hence, the Eu Yan Sang brand name has higher brand equity. Consumers may choose Eu Yan Sang over Hockhua in terms of brand equity.

Hockhua’s outlets are mostly located in the neighourhood areas, capturing the neighbourhood household market. They have limited outlets in shopping malls and downtown areas, making them more inaccessible to younger customers and tourists. Eu Yan Sang however has their outlets located at areas where most tourists frequent, particularly around Orchard Road's shopping malls, the airport and also Marina Bay Sands [21]. This allows them greater exposure to consumers especially...
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