Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Pricing and Market Share...

From the latest Expeditors 8-K, but something which I think applies to many other industries as well:
This is a market where you need to be very careful not to “take” market share at rates that are unsustainable. The funny thing about focusing on one dimensional goals, like market share gains, is that you will get two dimensional results, one of which you've decided doesn't warrant any prospective consideration (i.e. market share gains without regard to sustainable profitability). Ours is a business where you need to have two dimensional success. As we've noted before, in a service business like logistics, gaining market share isn't nearly as important as gaining profitable market share. To us, this is the difference between “taking market share” and having market share “take you.” We'd prefer not to be “taken.” We think our shareholders would agree. Giving the shareholders' money to potential customers to induce them to move freight through our Expeditors network seems somewhat counter-productive…let alone a breach of our fiduciary responsibility and moral obligation to make money for those same shareholders.