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Marketing Research of Verizon
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Netra Shetty
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Marketing Research of Verizon - April 9th, 2011

Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ, NASDAQ: VZ) is a global broadband and telecommunications company and a component of the Dow Jones Industrial Average. It started in 1983 as Bell Atlantic (based in Philadelphia) with a footprint covering New Jersey to Virginia and NYNEX (based in New York City) with a footprint spanning from New York to Maine that emerged as part of the 1984 AT&T breakup into seven "Baby Bells." Prior to its transformation into Verizon, a result of the Bell Atlantic–GTE merger, Bell Atlantic merged with Regional Bell Operating Company, NYNEX, in 1997. The name Verizon is a portmanteau of veritas and horizon,[2] and its pronunciation rhymes with horizon. The company's headquarters are located in the Verizon Building at 140 West Street in Lower Manhattan, New York City

ecrees 113 and 114 also require large numbers of technical personnel in order to obtain qualification certificates. Furthermore, Decree 113 requires all foreign technical or managerial personnel to spend at least three months per year in China.

Unlike construction services, the opportunity exists for foreign engineering and design companies to undertake some design work offshore, insofar as Decree 78 allows foreign engineering and design companies to work in cooperation with locally qualified engineering design institutes if the offshore services involve engineering design beyond the basic initial conceptual design stage.

The new Decree 114 Implementation Regulations provide considerable improvement and were issued on January 5, 2007. The Decree 114 Implementation Regulations have mitigated the more restrictive personnel requirements, insofar as they allow the Foreign-Invested Design Enterprises (FIDE) to “temporarily” meet its percentage requirement of foreign technical personnel who are qualified as registered architects or registered engineers in China, by hiring Chinese registered architects or registered engineers. The FIDE may also meet the percentage requirement of key technical personnel by employing Chinese technicians. In addition, the Decree 114 Implementation regulations relax the sixmonth residency stipulation, if it cannot be met ”temporarily”. The Decree 114 Implementation Regulations also allow newly established FIDEs to apply for Grade B or Grade C design qualification grades in their initial application. After receiving a temporary certificate, the FIDE must wait for two years before it can apply to upgrade to the next qualification grade.

Other market sectors were at odds across the region. Fragrance sales accounted for 27% of the Guatemalan market, compared to 11% for Chile. These disparities reflect very different levels of market development across the region. Chile, for example, has a retail network more in line with Western European norms, of urban-based high street retailers and supermarkets, compared to Bolivia where product availability is limited by poverty and ongoing infrastructure. Outdoor markets generated 50% of store-based retail sales in Bolivia, but less than 1% in Chile.

For these reasons, product range is wildly different - dermocosmetics were a key sales generator in Chile in 2007, but were largely absent from the Bolivian market. Although regional trends have seen consumers seeking to trade up, without ongoing macroeconomic growth over the forecast period, much of the potential of the market will not be met.

Retail improvement helps support growth
The development of more stable, normative retail channels over the review period has been one of the key drivers of growth, and will continue to support sales in the future. Most markets have seen significant development – in Mexico, for example, large retailers such as Wal-Mart de México, Controladora Comercial Mexicana, Organización Soriana and Grupo Gigante have all committed themselves to opening new outlets that have improved consumer choice and grown the market. Argentina has seen consumers switch from local stores to chained parapharmacies/drugstores, such as Farmacity, Vantage and Zona Vital in response to their better range of products.

Even less mature markets have seen retail development. Bolivia, Ecuador and Guatemala have all seen booms in direct selling. Large international producers like Avon have taken advantage of the relative absence of chains and driven sales by going directly to the consumer. Retail channels are anticipated to go on improving over the forecast period, with store-based retailing taking a larger share.

Lack of market regulation affects sales
A key trend across the region is the grey market for cosmetics and toiletries goods, which is undercutting sales and brand equity. Many markets suffer from the widespread availability of counterfeits, piracy and parallel trading – the fragrances market in particular suffers from this, as branding is most important here, and is the easiest part of a product to replicate. Some of these products are produced domestically, but the bulk of products appear to be Asian imports.

Undoubtedly, these sales are hurting established cosmetics and toiletries brands, and producers, trade associations and local governments are working to curb the problem. However, law enforcement in the region is under-funded, and control of counterfeit cosmetics and toiletries products is low priority. These problems are typically found in poorer, less stable markets such as Peru, Bolivia and Ecuador, but the region is rife with it – even wealthier markets such as Mexico and Brazil are suffering significant incursions into market value.

Forecast remains strong
Despite these difficulties, regional growth is anticipated to remain healthy, with forecast gains of 30% in constant terms over 2007-2012. The market is sufficiently immature to see growth continue. Even if anticipated recession inhibits potential, the improved availability of products and their marketing, thanks to international producers and chained retailers, will drive growth. However, the region has shown itself to be economically unstable in the past, and sustained economic growth will be the key driver of value over the forecast period, empowering more consumers.

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