Space Management Support Systems: From SH.A.R.P. to M.E.S.s?

  • Alain Bultez
Conference paper
Part of the NATO ASI Series book series (volume 61)


During the eighties, the number of new package goods introduced per year on the market increased tenfold, while the store space available to display them remained virtually flat. “The race for space is the new frontier of marketing” (Hapoienu (1989)). Consequently and as predicted by basic economics, space is regarded as a rare commodity, rented by retailers at a raising price. “Slotting allowances” and “stocking fees” are getting charged by the store keepers to the suppliers who want to have their products stocked on the outlet shelves. Hence supermarkets are caricatured as the “pile it high, sell it cheap” (Ashby (1989)) landlords of the distribution channels (Flanagan (1989)).

This recent trend combined with the possibility of gathering check-out data through UPC scanning systems has stimulated the management scientists’ interest for designing intelligent space-management decision support tools. The SH.A.R.P. model, recently developed and tested by Bultez et al. (1988, 1989), is extended here to encompass shoppers’ hierarchically structured product-choice behavior. Normative implications are explored and expressed in situation-action merchandising rules.


Sales Volume Handling Cost Product Visibility Purchase Planning Total Sales Volume 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alain Bultez
    • 1
  1. 1.European Institute for Advanced Studies in ManagementCatholic University of Mons (FUCAM)BrusselsBelgium

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