Primary supplier

The position held by the competitor that supplies the highest percentage of a product in a customer relationship. Every customer has a Primary Supplier.
(See also Secondary Supplier, Tertiary Supplier)

Example 1:

As part of the company’s implicit philosophy to maintain high utilization rates, maintaining high volume within a customer relationship is a key goal of USG’s marketing management. The company has been quite successful in winning the high-volume position with its customers. The vast majority of its sales volume is in the Primary Role in its customer relationships.
(Year 1995-SIC 3270)

Explanation: USG seeks to be the Primary Supplier in each of its gypsum industry customer relationships. It has succeeded in having most of its volume of sales in the Primary position with its customers by meeting most of those customers’ needs.

Example 2:

Cisco won part of a contract to supply Sprint’s Integrated Demand Network, a product that blended both phone and internet technology into speedy access on the web. But Nortel was always the Primary Supplier for the product, and because Cisco had trouble meeting some deadlines, Sprint is handing Nortel even more business.
(Year 1999-SIC 33575)

Explanation: Nortel was the Primary Supplier to Sprint for the Integrated Demand Network. It expanded its role when Secondary Supplier, Cisco, began failing Sprint on delivery deadlines.

Example 3:

Franklin Electric supplies all of the estimated 27 submersible pump manufacturers in the United States and has a 90%-plus market share of the submersible motors used in the domestic market.
(Year 1995-SIC 3621)

Explanation: Franklin Electric is the Primary Supplier to the market in the United States. In many cases, the company is also the sole supplier to its customers.

Example 4:

Kodak is the sole supplier to Eckerd, the fourth largest US outlet for film sales to amateurs. Observers claim Kodak offered Kmart $8 million to drop its Focal private-label film. Kodak offers huge rebates to chains for exclusivity.
(Year 1995-SIC 3861)

Explanation: Kodak, in its efforts to be a dominant Primary Supplier in its relationships, offers substantial price savings to shut out potential competition.

Example 5:

Foundation Health Plan, an HMO, now pays for most of its members’ drugs only at Longs, with which it signed an exclusive contract. The deal cut out 40% of the pharmacies that had been serving FHP.
(Year 1988-SIC 5912)

Explanation: Longs is the Primary, and sole supplier to Foundation Health.