Entrepreneurship and Small Business Management

Question 1/ 300 words: (33 marks)
Identify a famous shopping center in your country and describe why it is so popular. (20 marks)
What are the drawbacks of locating a small business in that shopping center? (13 marks)
Kuwait Magic Mall is a famous shopping center in Kuwait (CCEF, 2015). It is popular because it is the biggest shopping center with children fun and park areas. It also has popular video game shops and entertainment joints. It has a global outlook and has among the most popular retail stores in Kuwait, restaurants among other joints. It faces the ocean making it very beautifully placed. People from all over the world visit the shopping complex for memorable experiences.

Small businesses at the Kuwait Magic Mall seem to do well due to the huge traffic of people in the complex due to the mix of places of interest available, ranging from eating outs, children’s amusement areas, grocery stores, and enough packing areas. However, various setbacks face small businesses in the shopping center (Ahmed & Al-Owaihan, 2015). One problem is the high rents associated with the mall’s location near hotels and the sea. This makes businesses struggle to make ends meet. The rent is also a sum of the shop spaces based on the square feet and additional charges for common areas and facilities like the washrooms, water, electricity, cleaning, and common advertising.

The second challenge that small businesses face at the magic mall is that the center restricts businesses from competing businesses. Small businesses are usually working in progress and often tend to change the business to try a new market niche. The shopping center requires a business to stick to the line of business that it started with to avoid unnecessary competition among the tenants. This makes it hard for businesses that must change their line of goods and services to stay afloat. The last setback that faces businesses in the shopping center is competition from other emerging shopping malls. New shopping centers usually amuse people; therefore, once a new center is established, the traffic at Kuwait Magic Mall decreases, lowering sales (Bagnied & Cader, 2016).
Question 2/ 300 words: (33 marks)
What is the purpose of business incubators in the context of a small business? (20 marks)
In your opinion, is their work effective? (13 marks)

Business incubators aim to support start-up small businesses (Li, Ahmed, Qalati, Khan, & Naz, 2020). There are several purposes that incubators pursue in the context of small businesses. One of them is that they offer management training to small business entrepreneurs. Among the many challenges that small businesses face is the lack of management knowledge by the business owners. Therefore incubators bridge this gap by offering such services. The second purpose of the incubators is to offer access to funding and credit services. Small businesses often face the problem of insufficient capital and shocks by economic times. The incubators partner with funding agencies and credit banks to support the small businesses under incubation with the capital needed to venture into the business (Sharekh, 2018) successfully. 

The other way that incubators play a role in is by providing other support services to small businesses to survive in their initial period. For example, some incubators offer small businesses shared working spaces at subsidized prices to significantly lower their costs and spend more money on other areas like marketing and product development.  Some incubators also provide marketing opportunities to the incubators to help them get their initial client base.  Incubators act as tools to catalyze a country’s and region’s growth by supporting small businesses that form the backbone of many countries in the world.

Incubators effectively support small businesses to rise and stay afloat amidst the many challenges that face small businesses (AL-MUBARAKI & SCHRÖDL, 2011). The gap incubator organizations fill in the small business world is valid and considerable. The effectiveness of incubators is seen in the success of many small businesses that graduate and grow from incubation into being self-sufficient. The role played by these incubators is very important to the economy’s growth.
Question 3/ 350 words: (34 marks)
Define merchandising. (15 marks)
Elaborate with a real merchandising example conducted by a brand, shop, supermarket, producer, etc…(19 marks)

Merchandising promotes the goods in stock when the customer is already in a store. This means that the goods are displayed to attract the customer’s attention and influence their decision to purchase (Newman & Greenland, 2015). An example is how retail shops display their goods nicely to be seen by customers. Some other shops display products through the window so that the customers can get interested to purchase or enquire. Some retail stores keep changing their products arrangement so that customers can move around the entire store and see other products being sold.

Many companies, supermarkets, and brands use merchandising to promote their products. For example, on entering the Oncost Supermarkets in Kuwait, they have their goods displayed nicely to attract the attention of the buyers (Retail Insight, 2018). The fresh food is displayed through glass display stands to show how mouthwatering they are. Home care products are also displayed in their sections with different varieties. Some brands promote their products by assigning a sales representative to stand near the products to soothe customers to buy the products.

The supermarkets also have in-house advertising to ensure that customers are given more information and that the key brand messages are passed to the targeted customers in the stores. On entering the supermarkets, you get to meet a service crew that wears uniform clothes with written messages promoting the Oncost brand and offering to assist you in any way while in the outlet. All this is done by the supermarket to promote the goods it offers and also to promote itself as a brand. Merchandizing promotion is important in ensuring that customers have a better experience and can refer friends to the supermarket or brand due to the convincing power of the mechanizing activities.

References

Ahmed, A. A., & Al-Owaihan, A. (2015). Kuwait SMEs: Size, Obstacles, and Suggested Remedies. International Journal of Managerial Studies and Research (IJMSR) Volume 3, Issue 8, 7-14.

AL-MUBARAKI, H., & SCHRÖDL, H. (2011). MEASURING THE EFFECTIVENESS OF BUSINESS INCUBATORS: A FOUR DIMENSIONS APPROACH FROM A GULF COOPERATION COUNCIL PERSPECTIVE. Journal of Enterprising Culture Vol. 19, No. 4, 435–452.

Bagnied, M., & Cader, H. (2016). Shopping malls and commercial strips: an examination of factors affecting shoppers’ behavior in Kuwait. Int. J. Leisure and Tourism Marketing, Vol. 5, No. 1, 66-78.

CCEF. (2015). The Business environment in KUWAIT. Kuwait: ARA Research and Consultancy.

Li, C., Ahmed, N., Qalati, S. A., Khan, A., & Naz, S. ( 2020). Role of Business Incubators as a Tool for Entrepreneurship Development: The Mediating and Moderating Role of Business Start-Up and Government Regulations. Sustainability12, 1822; DOI:10.3390/su12051822, 1-23.

Newman, A., & Greenland, S. ( 2015, January 21). Retail Merchandising. Retrieved August 26, 2020, from John Wiley & Sons, Ltd: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/epdf/10.1002/9781118785317.weom090619

Retail Insight. ( 2018, November 26 ). OnCost Cash and Carry buys supermarket chain Gulfmart in Kuwait. Retrieved August 26, 2020, from Verdict Media Limited: https://www.retail-insight-network.com/news/oncost-cash-supermarket-gulfmart/

Sharekh, A. A. (2018). SME FUNDS AS VEHICLES OF ECONOMIC REFORM IN KUWAIT AND THE GCC. Kuwait: James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy of Rice University.