Brand context and control : the role of the flagship store in B&B Italia

Doyle, Stephen and Moore, Christopher and Doherty, Anne Marie and Hamilton, Morag (2008) Brand context and control : the role of the flagship store in B&B Italia. International Journal of Retail and Distribution Management, 36 (7). pp. 551-563. ISSN 0959-0552 (

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The paper seeks to explore the phenomenon of the flagship store from the perspective of brand management and brand context within the luxury furniture sector. Adopts a case-study approach, focusing upon Milan-based furniture manufacturer and retailer B&B Italia and comprises interview derived data and archive material. Recognises the difficulty associated with manufacturing/product-orientated organisations to establish a brand context. It identifies that the forward integration of luxury manufacturing companies into retailing, through the establishment of flagship stores provides such companies with an opportunity to provide a context for their brand and exercise a level of control over its manifestation that is difficult to achieve through other distribution channels. Highlights the value of forward integration as a means of establishing brand context and experience. Demonstrates the wider value of the flagship store as a brand management device and the potential contribution to brand communication for non-retail based organisations.