Tesco has launched a sweeping review of its entire supplier base and, in the words of one leading supplier source, a “tsunami” is on the way.
It’s too soon to say whether this in effect is going to be a ‘cull’ of suppliers, but it’s certainly a wake-up call if ever there was one.
If the Tesco-Booker and Sainsbury’s-Asda deals didn’t provide enough of a jolt, then surely this does. The UK’s biggest retailer (for now) is looking to slash the number of suppliers it works with, but offer longer-term partnerships for a selected few. Now is definitely the time to make sure you are one of the ones inside the circle.
That, of course, is a whole lot more easier said than done, especially if you happen to be one of the minnows.
But Tesco’s Reset on range has proved big companies can see their SKUs delisted, while smaller companies can still thrive if they get the product and their strategies right. It was not the doom-laden disaster some feared. It’s up to suppliers to make sure they are as ready as they can be for the Reset button, in this new phase, coming down on them.