Sustaining Client Relationships in the Contract Manufacturer Own-Brand Building Process: The Case of a Smartphone Firm

Feng Hsu Liu, Lu-Jui Chen, Hsiang-Heng Chen


Whereas maintaining buyer–supplier relationships has been widely discussed in the literature, sustaining
relationships with clients (buyers) while contract manufacturers (suppliers) pursue own-brand building has been relatively unexplored. This in-depth case study shows how an electronics contract manufacturer sustained its
client relationships while building its own brand. The research framework consists of two subprocesses:
competence leveraging and competence building. We argue that some of the strategies involved in these two
processes can explain how a contract manufacturer can succeed in maintaining client relationships while
pursuing own-brand building.

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