A Non-parametric Model of Residual Brand Equity in Hierarchical Branding Structures with Application to US Beer Data

    Sudhir Voleti and Pulak Ghosh

    Product offerings in many grocery product categories in supermarkets display varied branding structures built around a discernible branding hierarchy typically comprising brands, subbrands and stock keeping units. Firms often want to know what contribution each layer in the brand hierarchy brings to overall product value, and precisely how much of this contribution comes from unique branding associations (we term this value contribution the 'residual equity' of that branding layer). We make the economic argument that, in mature product categories, profit maximizing firms would retain the upper levels of the branding structure only if they were value enhancing. Using only aggregate sales and product data, we develop a semiparametric Bayesian method for a market response model to estimate jointly the residual equity of each layer in the branding structure while accommodating certain a priorirestrictions on the equity values. Our proposed model is simple yet flexible and avoids common drawbacks in extant approaches. We implement our model on AC Nielsen beer category data from US supermarkets. We find that residual equity exists, is sizable in magnitude and sales impact, is heterogeneous in occurrence across the branding structure, yields realistic brand valuations and bears managerially relevant insights and implications.



    Srinivasan R (CSP)

    The case titled "Mahindra Powerol: Powering entrepreneurial growth within a corporate group" authored by Srinivasan R (CSP) from Indian Institute of Management has been chosen as the first prize winner of the 2014 Emerald-UUM Case Writing Competition.

    The inaugural competition attracted a total of 26 original, high quality submissions from academics based at institutions across the globe including; the Indian Institute of Management Bangalore, National University of Malaysia, Universiti Utara Malaysia, Universiti Sains Islam Malaysia, University Malaysia Sarawak and the University of Northern Colorado amongst others. The total prize fund for the competition was US$2000 with US$1000 awarded to the winner and US$500 awarded to the two runner-up cases.  All three of the prize winners will also receive a celebratory plaque, courtesy of UUM.

    The winning cases are as follows:

    • 1st place - Mahindra Powerol: Powering entrepreneurial growth within a corporate group by Associate Professor R. Srinivasan (Indian Institute of Management Bangalore)
    • 2nd place - KKCL: Exploring growth opportunities by Assistant Professor Jyoti Kainth (Institute of Management Technology Ghaziabad) & Mr Gautam Kainth (Religare Global Asset Management)

    3rd place - Etihad Etisalat Company (Mobily) by Miss Alia Aleshaiwi (Al Imam Mohammad Ibn Saud Islamic University (IMSIU) & Asma Alhamdan


    Tears with them, Tears without: Onion Prices Make India Cry

    Sreelata Jonnalagedda

    Onion prices have been particularly volatile in India, reaching an all-time high of Rs. 100 in the month of October 2013 in certain parts of the country. The core of the onion price problem appears to stem from massive hoarding by cartels of intermediaries. How can this be stopped? Are there deeper problems with India's agricultural policies that belie the onion market failures? Onion is an important commodity for Indians of all classes; it is also the one that has swung political fortunes in India. The state of affairs in the onion market is indicative of gaping policy holes in the Indian agricultural markets. As India gears for the national elections in 2014, there is heightened interest in policy manifestos of the competing political parties. A history of policy measures adopted by past governments of India and the effects of these measures are outlined in this case. The case provides a platform for students to discuss the appropriateness of various policy measures with respect to agricultural produce marketing in India.


    Philanthropy and Social Networks

    Manaswini Bhalla, Tushi Baul and Tanya Rosenblat

    Charitable giving is motivated by altruism towards others. We want to analyze to what extent social preferences are an intrinsic characteristic and to what extent they are acquired through social interaction. We distinguish between two acquisition channels: (1) Agents interact repeatedly with socially close neighbors; this creates directed altruism. For example, a few researchers observe that directed altruism raises giving by about 50% compared to baseline giving to strangers in dictator games. (2) Agents are influenced by and imitate the social preferences of those with whom they interact. For example, a few researchers find that greater interaction with an African-American roommate makes white students more supportive of affirmative action and related policies even after leaving college.


    Consumer Behavior

    Leon G Schiffman, Joseph Wisenblit and S Ramesh Kumar

    *Emerging economy -examples of how the Indian context is different from a  developed marketing context-in terms of demographics and lifestyles when approached from a consumer behavior viewpoint.


    *Cultural orientation-India has a strong anchor with regard to cultural beliefs and practices that are important to marketing and  it is important for a student to know how consumer behavior is affected by such diverse cultures in the country. (diverse examples will be given)

    *Digital media and consumer behavior- the new perspective would cover some aspects of how the different dimensions of digital media will combine with consumer behavior in the Indian context.

    *Women and brands-the traditional perspectives on women in India is undergoing a radical change. At the same time there are certain precautions that marketers need to take while projecting women as a part of  brand proposition-how can consumer behavior and branding be useful to the communication of brands that are associated with women?

    *Technology-Consumer behavior interface across chapters. A new chapter on social media.

    *Category development -with brand penetration being quite low in developing economies (as compared to developed economies) how can category development and brand development  be understood through consumer behavior is an area of importance.

    *Historical brands : the edition would have brands that have been  a part of the Indian context for decades and examples of such brands would be used across chapters . This would enhance the connect of  the content with the students.


    Gold and India

    Charan Singh, Akshat Kumar Sinha, Apurva Nadkarni, Atirek Kumar, Jayanta Kumar Sardar, Samir Jain, Sayan Das, Shubham Agrawal and Surbhi Shukla

    Gold is the most liquid form of wealth for centuries. This distinct characteristic of the yellow metal has eluded researchers for several years and continues to do so. It is also used as a hedge against inflation or recession when the market does not provide optimal investment opportunities. Gold demand is a complex function of various economic determinants and is potential area of academic research etc. Therefore, this study attempts to examine level of impact of gold imports on current account deficit (CAD), and governance and regulation of gold markets in India. Finally, the study makes some suggestions to develop gold market and monetize 21,000 tonnes of gold held by households and temples in the country.

Several IIMB cases are published and distributed either through Harvard Business School or Richard Ivey School of Business.

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