Fe’nix del sur was established in the early 1900s in Phoenix, Arizona. In addition to its head office it has other branches that are situated in Miami, Los Angeles, and Boston. The organization deals in artifacts mainly from Africa and South America. Besides, it also trades in jewelry and pottery from southwest India.
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Most people came to know about this organization due to its classical jewelry and pottery that were thought to be from southwest India. In fact these two categories of artifacts are what boosted its popularity among consumers. As time moved on, the organization begun to incorporate artifacts from Columbia and Africa. One of the most outstanding features of African artifacts was that they were from various ethnic tribes of Africa and some of them were ceremonial artifacts such as those that were used during burial rites in African communities.
Jansson (2007) argues that by then the demand for artifacts was high and there was very minimal competition but as time moved more traders of artifacts came to explore the market. Most people had sold their artifacts and thus they became scarce in the market which made some people to make imitations of these artifacts in order to meet the demands of the artifact market. With diminishing supply of artifacts Fe’nix del sur did not have an option but to include the imitated artifacts in its stock.
Doole and Lowe (2007) explains that this decline in supply of artifacts is owed to modernization because the ancient people from where these artifacts had already adopted the modern culture and religion hence they no longer made the artifacts because they did not require them in their latter religion. The imitations resembled the old artifacts although they were far from being original because of the materials that were used to make them.
By the year 2001, Fe’nix had contracted craftsmen in Central America, South America, and Africa. The craftsmen comprise of native people because they are the only ones who truly understand their artifacts unlike the new generation which only sees such items in museums and other historic conservation sites. Fe’nix decided to venture into imitations due to increase in demand for its artifacts and because the original artifacts were rare to come by. The imitations were mostly preferred by people who wanted to add beauty into their homes and those who purchased them as presents to their loved ones (Ranchhod & Marandi, 2006).
The organization’s gross trade was estimated to be 25 million dollars. In this figure, the sales from imitated artifacts generated very little returns compared to the originals. The profit margin stated above continued to swell. Myron Rangard argues that the swell in sales is due to the unique giving out strategy. This is because it issues its products to the people who are most likely to use them and they include interior designers, exhibitions and convenient stores rather than confining their merchandise to shops. Clemes (2002) reckons that this strategy places their items at favorable positions because the above mentioned places are visited by home owners and thus they are used as marketing channels.
So far the profit margins of Fe’nix have been deteriorating due to government regulations in African countries that are against the sale of artifacts beyond their national borders. The authorities of such countries are advocating for the reservation of artifacts because of their historical and cultural importance. Moreover, more traders have joined this industry and unlike before when there were only five rival organizations today there are eleven organizations that trade in artifacts.
The new rivals have flooded the market with low quality artifacts that are being sold at throw away prices compared to the prices that are quoted by native craftsmen. In addition, more convenient shops are trading in these goods including supermarkets. Fe’nix needs to rethink its business strategies by focusing on the expectations of customers and the quality of artifacts. Having a wide variety of products can steer the company in meeting its corporate goals.
Clemes, D.M. (2002).New Zealand Case Studies in Strategic Marketing. New Zealand: Cengage Learning.
Doole, I. & Lowe, R. (2007).CIM Coursebook. Strategic Marketing Decisions: 07/08 Edition. Oxford: Butterworth-Heinemann.
Jansson, H. (2007).International Business Marketing in Emerging Country Markets: The Third Wave of Internationalization of Firms. Massachusetts: Edward Elgar Publishing.
Ranchhod, A, & Marandi, E. (2006).CIM Coursebook. Strategic Marketing in Practice. Oxford: Butterworth-Heinemann.