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Developing an iceberg theory of cost comparisons in relation to sourcing decisions by UK fashion retailers

Hines, Tony (2002) Developing an iceberg theory of cost comparisons in relation to sourcing decisions by UK fashion retailers. Journal of the Textile Institute, 93 (3). pp. 3-14. ISSN 0040-5000

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Abstract

The paper begins with an explanation of the industry context in which buying decisions were made. Research methodology is then discussed, followed by an examination of the role of the buyer in the buying decision, and how performance measures implemented by retail organisations influence those decisions. The dysfunctional nature of the decision and its impact upon the buying teams and organisational performance and serious implications for sourcing decisions are discussed in the next section. The main part of the paper is devoted to an explanation of the iceberg theory of cost comparisons developed as a result of this work. Sources of competitive advantage are briefly identified for UK suppliers and retailers before some of the key findings and implications for managers in taking sourcing and purchasing decisions are discussed further. The grounded theory developed as part of this research, and the contribution it makes to developing a better understanding of sourcing and purchasing decisions in this industrial setting, are summarised before further areas for research are identified.

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