The Impact of Some Qualitative Elements of Relational Exchanges on Purchasing Strategies of Buyers Towards their Strategic Suppliers in the Food Processing Sector in Slovenia

Matjaž Iršič


The author examines a relationship between the qualitative elements of relational exchanges and the implementation of relationship marketing strategies vs. transactional marketing strategies from the buyer’s perspective in business-tobusiness exchanges in food processing companies in Slovenia. Therefore, four groups of qualitative relational exchange’ factors have been determined: attractiveness of supplier, attractiveness of total purchasing market for the buyer, competitive position of the buyer on the purchasing market, and the bargaining orientation of the buyer toward its strategic supplier. For each of four above mentioned groups of constructs the author developed independent variables, which have been tested for convergent and discriminant validity and reliability of the measures. Drawing on emerging perspectives on food processing companies in Slovenia and their relationship with strategic suppliers, the author proposes that a buyer’s perception of qualitative elements of relational exchanges influences employment of particular marketing strategies towards its strategic supplier. The construct of dependent variables has been composed by 25 selected purchasing marketing strategies based on relevant instruments of purchasing marketing mix: product (service) strategies, price’ and terms of exchange’ strategies, delivery and inventory strategies, strategies of sources of supply, strategies of processes between a buyer and a supplier, and purchasing marketing communication strategies. Such selection of strategies reveals individual marketing activities of the buyers on their purchasing market. Results of empirical study which is based on multiple discriminant analysis show some correlation between the groups of variables investigated. The influence of measured factors on the implementation of particular group of marketing strategies exists, although the strongest impact is prevailed especially by factors, which are characteristic for short-term relationships. Hence the surveyed companies are oriented much more toward achieving short-term efficiency instead of long-term effectiveness. This research makes a contribution to the strategy literature and to the practitioners in food processing industry, and has important implications for purchasing managers by offering guidelines for mixing the various aspects of partnering according to their objectives and strategies in order to improve the level of their relational approach to their strategic suppliers.

Keywords: Marketing, Purchasing Marketing Strategies

Qualitative Elements of Relational Exchange, Transactional Marketing, Relationship

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