Our research is conducted with the purpose of investigating and studying the current retail mix. We chose The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf ® as the retail company which operates in Malaysia. This report is important for The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf ® as it helps them to identify their problems and make further improvements to enable them to compete with their competitors, for example, Starbucks.
As we know, The Coffee Bean has a lot of franchises, there were about 750 stores in 22 countries, for example in California, Arizona, Nevada, Singapore, Malaysia, Sabah, Taiwan, UAE, Korea, Brunei, Indonesia, Australia, Shanghai, Israel and Brunei and continues to expand both domestically and internationally. As it is hard for us to conduct a research on this topic in so many countries, therefore we only focus on The Coffee Bean operating in Malaysia. We conducted our research by using searching for detail information through the internet.
Besides that, we went to one of the franchises located in Penang to see how the business operates, how the staffs serve their customer and to know more information on the store layout and design. The result of our research shows us that The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf ® has encountered many problems. As conclusion, we did include several recommendations to The Coffee Bean and to help them to improve in order to earn more profit and their sales can increase. RETAIL ENVIRONMENT
Retailing is the final activities and steps needed to place merchandise made elsewhere into the hand of the consumer or to provide services to the consumer. Nowadays, retail sector is increasingly being viewed as an important in the economy and to the society. According to Malaysia Retail Report 2010, it predicts that total retail sales will grow from an estimated US$35bn in 2009 to almost US$58bn by 2014. A low unemployment rate, which rise the disposable incomes and a strong tourism industry are key factors behind the forecast growth. In 2009, Malaysia’s nominal GDP was US$201. 6bn. Over the forecast period through to 2014, it predicted that average annual GDP will growth 4. 3%. With the population expected to increase by 9. 8%, GDP per capita is predicted to rise from US$7,103 in 2009 to US$9,654 in 2014. Furthermore, it also forecast that consumer spending per capita will increase from US$1,961 in 2009 to US$3,197 in 2014. Moreover, Malaysia is classified as an upper-middle income country. According to the Department of Statistics Malaysia (DSM), the average consumer spending was MYR2,285 per month in urban areas and MYR1,301 per month in rural areas.
With the urban population predicted to account for almost 76% of the total by 2015, according to UN data, this is likely to have a positive effect on retail sales. Thirteen years ago, The Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf brought the art of coffee drinking and the world of gourmet grinds to the land of kopitiams and has since successfully integrated it into the fabric of the urban Malaysian’s lifestyle. Thirteen years later, there are over 54 stores in the east and west Malaysia. We can see that between this time period, Coffee Bean had rapidly growth.
Besides, Malaysian today is also familiar with Coffee Bean compare to a few years ago. In the future, it is expected that Coffee Bean will continue to growth in Malaysia due to the changing lifestyle of Malaysian and other factors. INTRODUCTION In year 1963, Herbert B. Hyman started The Coffee Bean ;amp; Tea Leaf ®. With a dedication to excellence and the quality of coffees and teas in the world, Herbert’s efforts made him the founding father of gourmet coffee in California. Now The Coffee Bean ;amp; Tea Leaf ® has grown into one of the largest privately-owned, family-run coffee and tea companies in the world.
Besides, the endurance and popularity of The Bean attributed to the high standards that were established from the beginning. The Coffee Bean ;amp; Tea Leaf ® has discovered the formula for a successful coffee and tea company, which is start from trend-setting drinks such as the World Famous Ice Blended®, to the employees who become a part of the communities they work in. Today, they offer over 22 varieties of coffees and 20 kinds of teas. Moreover, Coffee Bean is also a Clicks and Mortar retailer. They sell their product at both online and via physical stores.
The Coffee Bean ;amp; Tea Leaf ® mission is to create a spirit within the company that inspires their team members to provide their customers with a total quality experience that is: Quality of Product, Service and Environment Furthermore, they also believe in the fundamental truths that guide them through their daily lives at The Coffee Bean ;amp; Tea Leaf ®, which is: 1. Friendly with each other and their customers. 2. Respect for each other’s values, opinion and individual diversity. 3. Ownership, it is because they are proudly entrusted with the responsibility. . Teamwork, it is because they achieve success by working together. 5. Honesty, it is because they are truthful to each other and to themselves. In short, they realize that their customers deserve ‘simply the best’. THREATS AND OPPORTUNITITIES Opportunities 1) Changing lifestyle Although there is an economic downturn in year 2009, however, the specialty of coffee industry has grown every year. According to one of the economy observer, when times are good the coffeehouse industry is great, and when times are bad the coffeehouse industry is still great.
This means that the coffee industry is strong at all times. What makes the coffee industry become a strong industry at all time? One of the main factors is changing in the Malaysian’s lifestyle. Nowadays, many of them are hard-working, fast-paced Malaysian considers a stop at their local coffeehouse as their necessary part of the day. This is because coffeehouses provide calm, inviting environment for people to socialize, relax or catch up on work. Coffeehouse for such The Coffee Bean ;amp; Tea Leaf is one of the places where they can meet with their friends.
Besides, with the relaxing atmosphere and environment it makes the coffeehouse become a suitable place for the college student to do their assignment or discussing their homework. During weekend nights, coffeehouse is the place where full with the young customers. Furthermore, instead of going to a bar and paying for an alcoholic drink or a restaurant where a meal usually comes with a hefty price tag, the older adults now choose to spent their time in the coffeehouse. With a cup of coffee and snack, they can meet with their friends and relax. 2) Market potential
As what we had discussed just now, Malaysian’s lifestyle is changing and therefore, coffee industry for such The Coffee Bean has the potential to growth in Malaysia. According to the research, there are only 54 outlets of The Coffee Bean ;amp; Tea Leaf in the whole Malaysia included East Malaysia. In the future, it is expected that the number of outlet will continue to increase. In short it means there is a market potential for The Coffee Bean. Threats 1) Competition Global coffee market is one of the very competitive sectors. The main competitor of The Coffee Bean ;amp; Tea Leaf in Malaysia is Starbuck.
This is because both Starbuck and The Coffee Bean ;amp; Tea Leaf are addressing the same target group. Both The Coffee bean and Starbucks have developed a strong and successful business by adhering to their core values that is to offer customers the best coffees and teas, to hire friendly staff from local community and to provide comfortable places to them to relax. Therefore, The Coffee Bean ;amp; Tea Leaf has to develop the best strategies to compete with Starbuck. In here, the most important thing to compete with Starbucks is to improve its services.
For example, The Coffee Bean ;amp; Tea Leaf had offering “Party Pack” which customer can order when throwing a house or office party. They provide services of giving their customer the possibility to bring The Coffee Bean ;amp; Tea Leaf lifestyle back to their homes. Moreover, the company also provides online services. They have their home page with virtual stores which is being defined as collection of all pages of information. The customers can buy their product through online and knowing the latest promotion through the homepage.
Besides, coffee manufacturer, such as, Nestle USA, Inc, distribute premium coffee products nationally in supermarkets and convenience stores. Most of these products may be substitutes for this company’s coffees and their coffee drinks. Therefore, if the company wants to retain its status as the world’s leading specialty coffee retailer, it must be aware of their competitors. 2) Host country risk management Risk management issues such as government policies, regulation, macroeconomic variations and monetary uncertainties are important to The Coffee Bean ;amp; Tea Leaf on its international franchising.
Therefore, it is a necessary for The Coffee Bean ;amp; Tea Leaf to understand the host county government policies concerning to the transfer and repatriation of dividends, fees and royalties. However, this company conducts a very little host government policy evaluation due to attributed to a lack of resources and reactive approach to market expansion. 3) Enthusiasm of health consciousness Nowadays, people attitude are changing and they care more to health. More and more people are taking responsibility for their health rather than passively accepting medical decisions.
With this, the consumers are cutting down on caffeine. It is because they believe that drinking coffee will harm their health. This is because that they feel that the pros of consuming coffee are less than the cons. As a result, this may decline the demand for coffee from The Coffee Bean ;amp; Tea Leaf. COMPANY’S RETAIL MIX Retail mix is the combination of merchandise, assortment, price, promotion, customer service and store layout that best serves the segments targeted by the retailer. Price The price is what the customer willing to pay in exchange for the benefits of the product and services.
From the research that we had conducted on several Coffee Bean franchises, it is clearly shown that the price of most of the products offered is around RM10 and above. For example, an egg club sandwich and a plate of Chinese chicken salad cost Rm15. 50 each. It may be expensive for certain group of people such as the youths who are the zero income earners. With this we can see that the price charged by The Coffee Bean is slightly higher than those coffee shops such as Old Town Coffee but if we use Coffee Bean pricing and compare it to their biggest competitor in the coffee industry, for such, Starbuck.
Starbucks will have a little advantage on the pricing as with high price, they will earn higher profits in just a short period. Based on the research, we can see that Coffee Bean focused on non price decisions, but on other factors such as qualities and facilities. Thus in here it is clear that Coffee Bean is using the above – market pricing policy as they do provide the wifi facilities and also the good environment for people to do their business or assignments. It also had show that they target the market most on the youths. The muffins and cookies which cost only less than Rm5 are affordable for the youths but the cakes nd also the pasta set are not affordable for them as they are not working and thus no income for them. They only depend on the pocket money given by their parents. Thus The Coffee Bean should offer their products with lower prices so that it is affordable for the youths to purchase it. Coffee Bean can earn back their profits in the long term. The adults with middle and high income can afford to spend on the products offer by Coffee Bean. For example, although the price for those cups and gifts available in The Coffee Bean are quite expensive, but there were actually people who purchase them especially those with high income.
Merchandise Merchandise is being defined as goods, ware, stocks, articles or item to be sold. In another way of defining merchandise is the availability of assortment of products available in the retail shop. For The Coffee Bean ;amp; Tea Leaf or also known as The Coffee Bean in short, offer many types of products such as coffees, teas, cakes, party-packs, pies, cookies, muffins, sandwiches, salads and even hot pasta. They even offer different types of drink menus for their customers. The Coffee Bean does customise to meet the wants and demands of their customers.
This is because different consumers have different types of preferences. It can be shown clearly when The Coffee Bean customises their coffees into light and subtle, rich and smooth, dark and distinctive and flavoured. For example the light and subtle coffee is especially for the customers who prefer mild and delicate flavour. Whereas for teas, it is being categorise into black and oolong tea, green tea and flavoured green and herbal and fruit infusion. For such, green, black and oolong teas all have their own signature flavours and aromas, and each will have its own unique set of blends that complements and expands their essence.
A mellow Ceylon tea, for example, blended with a delicate peach flavour works the magic sparks of fruitiness with a light floral finish. And to those who dream of having spectrum of aromas and flavours, a cup of oolong tea will be their choice. Furthermore, the cakes being offered can be customised into cheesecake special, signature classic, for kids and special occasions. They also offer the drink menus to suit the taste and preferences of their valuable customers. For such, they offer coffee, espresso, brewed tea, tea latte, non-coffee, coffee ice blended drinks, coffee-free ice blended drinks and many more.
Thus with the way of customising their products to suit the tastes and preferences of different customers, it will then help to attract more customers to The Coffee Bean and with customers, retail trade can be done. They also do provide merchandise line depth whereby they allow their customers to choose the size for their drinks whether they want small, regular or large size. In conclusion, customer satisfaction can be met when the retail organisation, The Coffee Bean is being influenced by the customers’ needs and wants.
Besides from all these, The Coffee Bean also do offer some gift packs, for example The Holiday Tea Trio which includes three mini square tins each containing five tea bags of whole leaf teas. They are nicely wrapped with ribbon on top of it which makes it attractive for people to purchase them. Although Coffee Bean offer a variety of products for their customer but it may bring some disadvantage such as the taste and aroma of coffees and teas may not be that fragrant anymore as they do not focus on only a particular type of coffee and tea.
This may make the good quality of the products offer by them to be turned into bad quality. Therefore, to prevent this from happening, Coffee Bean should only picked up some of their famous products to specialise in and to continually improve on it. Advertising and promotions The Coffee Bean become famous and as a media darling, their brand have been place and promote in hits shows like Entourage and The Hills, to coverage leading publications like Forbes Magazine and the Times. Coffee Bean had advertised its brand not only through the media or magazine but some other ways such as donations, promotions and others.
The Coffee Bean have come out with a numbers of examples they been using to reflect the concept of social responsibility and also to promote their brand through donations. It can be shown by the following example; The Coffee Bean made a donation, 50% from their sales item to be donated to serves children with autism, learning disabilities, hyperactivity or attention deficit disorder, mental retardation, and emotional challenges. Through an ongoing commitment, The Coffee Bean ;amp; Tea Leaf® holds The Help Group’s annual Deck the Walls holiday fundraising program and proudly features the children’s artwork.
Their most recent activity is the project of Caring Cup initiatives which planted and nurtured domestically in communities served by the company, as well as internationally in communities which the product originate. The framework of caring cup initiatives is rooted in need; where need from preventing the environment to improving education. Through these, The Coffee Bean will definitely well known in public and as we can see nowadays more and more people will come to purchase from the shops whereby there do a lot of charity work and these charity programs will be part of The Coffee Bean social responsibilities.
Beside donation there are a few promotions being used to promote their brand. At times, The Coffee Bean ;amp; Teas also give free drinks today to celebrate the launch of the cafe’s holiday drink line. For example, from 4p. m. to 8 p. m. (11/12) customers can get a free 12 oz holiday drink. Choices include: Peppermint Latte or Ice Blended drink; Pumpkin latte or Ice Blended drink. Besides that, they also promote their famous drinks by posting pictures on the wall and putting up banners outside of their franchises.
People who own The Coffee Bean Card may have some benefits too and it acts as a way of promoting and thus can attract their customers to purchase more. By having the card the consumers may enjoy the convenience of debit purchase, the more the people top up the card the more benefit they will get, such as 10% more value and redeemable of other item by having at least 5 point. They do have the holiday promotion. When it is near by the holiday season, they had been preparing some merchandise to go, such holiday cocoas gift set and others.
This had helping in promote the brand by his consumer to others. They also have their online advertisement. They are not only having their own web site but they already create their pages in Facebook, Twitter and also Youtube which are the famous connection web on current time. They also post some short video on the web to promote and attract to the customer. With all the relevant aspect, connection and advertisement use by the company, Coffee Bean has successfully passed their information to their customer.
Through the promotions of the products by hanging up banners and pictures on the wall sometimes may not contain full information such as the pricing and the nutrition of the particular product. They may only contain attractive pictures on it. In order to solve it, the management of Coffee Bean should publish their nutrition label and the pricing on the banners. With these, customers can get the information of the products they choose and can decide whether to purchase it or not. Besides that, we also noticed that Coffee Bean do not give out brochures as a mean of promotion. This may be a disadvantage for them.
If brochures are provided to the passer-by, they may tend to go in to the Coffee Bean to enjoy the products offered by them. As a conclusion, the Coffee Bean should also provides brochures and distribute it to the people so that they can have more information on the offers and promotions offered. Customer service and Selling Customer service is the provision of service to customers before, during and after a purchase. For The Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf, they provide a series of customer service to their customers. Such as, their entire customer can apply for a member card or so called The Coffee Bean Card.
Basically, The Coffee Bean Card is a loyalty card introduced to reward regular customers with loyalty points called “BEANS” which can be subsequently redeemed against purchases at The Coffee Bean ;amp; Tea Leaf outlets (CBTL). With perception, Coffee Bean is a big believer in teamwork (just like Starbucks) as they feel that success is achieved by working together. After our research on several franchises of The Coffee Bean, we noticed that their staffs are efficient, friendly and helpful enough. They maintain amicable relationships between customers and each other.
This can be shown when customers ordered their drinks and food at the counter, they served their customers with smiles and when we asked them certain questions for our assignment purpose, they will try their best to answer us. The employees have respect for each other’s values, opinions and individual personalities and are honest and truthful to themselves and each other. Due to this strategy, they can serve their customers in a better way. In addition, Coffee Bean also provided online service which customer can view their website that having the latest news and more information towards their company.
In order to let their customer to contact them or get more information towards them, Coffee Bean also provide their headquarter address, email, telephone and even fax number on their website. They even have their website for their customers to comment on their services and products provided. Selling is being defined as trying to make sales by persuading someone to buy one’s product or service. Coffee Bean also did selling. They try to sell out their product as much as their competitors do. Therefore, promotion will exist. Besides that, Coffee Bean tends to sell their product through their good and friendly customer service.
Due to the customer service provided by them are good, customers tend to come back to them when they think of having a cup of coffee and enjoying the peaceful environment there. Although most of the Coffee Bean franchises are well organised with their efficient workers, there is a possibility that they do made mistakes to especially in delivering the drinks to the customers or when they prepare the drinks. This can be shown when our group when to one of The Coffee Bean to do our research while having our drinks there; we noticed that they made the drinks for us not according to the size we ordered.
For such, we ordered a regular size black forest ice blended and a large size of the caramel ice blended, but during the preparations of the drinks, the staffs made mistakes, everything goes the other way round. These mistakes can be avoided by sending those staffs to more training programs so that they can improve and be more efficient and the operations in The Coffee Bean will be more effective and productive. Location Location is an area that retailing may undergo significant changes in the decade to come.
Besides that, retailers have been classified according to their location within a metropolitan area, be it the central business district, a regional shopping centre or neighbourhood shopping centre, or freestanding unit. In order to have the businesses caring out well or to improve the businesses, location and target market can be considered as important factors. For example, if the location that retailers choose is too far away from the town or is it hardly or impossible to find a parking lot to park their vehicles, most of the consumers will choose not to go there.
Locations that retailers mostly choose to run their businesses and to earn a profit from there are such as metropolitan area (e. g. : town area), central business district (e. g. : heart of the state) and so on. In Malaysia, most of the retailers would like to operate their businesses at metropolitan and central business district. The reason they choose these places is because the locations tend to attract more consumers to their shops as there were also many hypermarkets and supercenters around.
As for this assignment, we carried out a research on The Coffee Bean ;amp; Tea Leaf, The locations that Coffee Bean may choose to run their franchise businesses are basically the two popular locations. Besides that, The Coffee Bean ;amp; Tea Leaf currently has over 750 stores in 22 countries. In addition, in Malaysia currently have over 54 stores. 31 franchises in Klang Valley, 6 in Penang, 1 at Ipoh, 2 in Pahang, 3 in Johor Bharu, 2 in Malacca, 6 in Sabah and 3 in Sarawak. Every Coffee Bean in Malaysia tends to gives people a relaxing and enjoyable environment.
The location that Coffee Bean’s retailer pick mostly at those places which can attract more people. The Coffee Bean ;amp; Tea Leaf tends to attract those tourists and people who used to hang out with friends or to those who were carrying out their direct selling with others. For such, after a tired shopping day, most of those shoppers will tend to find a relaxing place for a rest. They can enjoy the coffee and the sweet aroma of teas that are provided by the Coffee Bean. Next is the customers may also enjoy the beautiful scenery around these franchises, for such the beaches.
Through these, more of the tourists will pay a visit and spend their time there. Besides that, location such as shopping complexes is also a hot spot for shoppers and tourists to spend their time there either the day or night. Customers can sit and relax themselves; they can also view the shoppers shopping around and can feel the friendliness of the people. Locations that Coffee Bean chooses are also convenient to the entire consumer. Most of the franchises operate at the shopping complex; this is because there are a lot parking places provided for their customers.
This will let those consumers to pay more visits to their shops which can provide them with the drinks provided and the good customer service provided. Target Market is the specific group of customers that a company aims to capture. They have been identified as people with needs or wants that can be met with the products or services from the company. The Coffee Bean ;amp; Tea Leaf is targeting the youth, who are teens and working adults in their twenties. This has become a weakness for the firm. The Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf aligns itself with other major brands targeting the youth market.
This may lead it to lose some potential market. For example, DOME’s positioning is “expensive and exclusive” as its target market is basically the professionals, managers, executives and businessmen. But The Coffee Bean ;amp; Tea Leaf’s target market is the youth and who didn’t have strong consumption power. The target market for The Coffee Bean ;amp; Tea Leaf is sensitive to the price issue. The Coffee Bean positioned them well in the target market by a competitive pricing strategy. This pricing strategy likes a threat for The Coffee Bean ;amp; Tea Leaf.
Thus the market share and profit for The Coffee Bean ;amp; Tea Leaf are limited. They also target the adults with stable income. The problem on the location is that there were only 54 outlets in Malaysia. For example, Pahang there is only 1 branch but we found out that it may not be enough for the Pahang residents. The people who want to go to The Coffee Bean may need to travel a long distance to reach Coffee Bean. As a recommendation, we recommend that the management of The Coffee Bean should increase the number of outlet in Pahang.
Next we also found out that The Coffee Bean target the youth as their main target. Our group feel that the youths who are the zero income earners might not have enough income to spend on the products offer which will be slightly expensive for them. Thus Coffee Bean has made a mistake, they should target adults with medium and high incomes as their main target group as they can purchase the products without worrying that they would not have enough cash to pay. Store layout and design Layout and design is defined as an arrangement, plan, design of a building, book, picture and etc.
As we know, Coffee Bean is one of the franchise companies. Most of their layouts and designs are almost the same in every outlet. For example, the theme colour of the outlet. You can see that their outlet mostly is painted in brown colour. Brown colour is a natural, down-to earth neutral colour. It represents warmth, wholesomeness, friendliness and simplicity. With this, it gave their customers a warmth feeling when they are inside their outlet. As the customers enter into the Coffee Bean, they can also notice the pictures of the famous drinks at Coffee Bean are being hang up on the wall.
Besides that, the playing of the sentimental music makes the environment calm and relaxing. This makes their customers willing to pay for a higher price for a cup of coffee and enjoy it in such calm and relaxing atmosphere. Furthermore, there are also a counter is used to display their products such as packets of teas and coffees, cakes, cookies, muffins and etc in every outlet. It is well organised, people can easily find the products they want as the products are being arranged in order. Each of the products display is being priced.
Customers can choose whatever products they want from there and they can see the price for it. Moreover, in every outlet, there is a menu board at the counter. It shows the menu of coffee drinks and beverages that sell and their price. Customers can refer to the board and make their orders. There is also a small blackboard hanging on the wall which states that what the special offer is for the day. The outlets for most of the Coffee Bean franchises were big enough, there were spacious space for the customers to walk around without asking the others to shift their chairs to allow them to walk pass.
The management of The Coffee Bean also placed some plants in their outlets as part of the decorations on the franchise. They do provide magazines for their customers to read. Next is the lighting system in The Coffee Bean franchises. They usually will use the bulbs with orange colour to give people the romantic and warmth feeling. The lights being used by them are those with nice designs on it and are in various shapes. There is also wifi provided for their customers who wants to serve on the internet for the assignments and business purposes.
After stating the store layout and design of The Coffee Bean ;amp; Tea Leaf, our group also do noticed some problem on it. For such, the writings on the small blackboard which is used to write what the special offer of the day are too colourful and it is too small as it can make the customers difficulty in reading it. Thus to improve it, they should provide each Coffee Bean franchises with a bigger blackboard and the writings should be change to a bigger size and the fonts which can be easily readable by the customers. CONCLUSION
From the report above, we can see that The Coffee Bean ;amp; Tea Leaf has been growing from time to time, but on the way of growing there are several issues that need retailer’s attention and take certain actions to correct and to improve it.. From the research, we found out that most of their customers are youngster and are of the middle income earner, but the price of most of the products offered is around RM10 and above, with this, it may not be affordable for the zero income earners in here the youngsters. As from these, Coffee Bean may need to lower the price of their products.
As for the location and the number of outlets of the Coffee Bean, it is shown that there are only 54 outlets of Coffee Bean which operate in Malaysia, 31 franchises in Klang Valley, 6 in Penang, 1 at Ipoh, 2 in Pahang, 3 in Johor Bharu, 2 in Malacca, 6 in Sabah and 3 in Sarawak. As we can see there are unequal balances of outlets located, with this they may need to add more branches on those states which are under stored. Beside this, The Coffee Bean also conducts a small part of host government policy evaluation due to attributed to a lack of resources and reactive approach to market expansion.
With this take should pay more attention on it. As on the side of health, a medical report had state on caffeine which conduct in the coffee may cause harm on our health; this had cause the consumers to cut down on the consumption of coffee which contains caffeine. With this, The Coffee Bean may concentrate on tea left beside the coffee. Next, they offer a variety of products and thus they need to choose certain products which are popular among the tastes and preferences of the consumers.
For their advertisement and promotions, they should provide more information on it, such as nutrition labels and the pricing on the banners, this not only can attract the customer, and it may also help those consumer make decision on their choice. Although The Coffee Bean franchises are well organized with their efficient workers, but there still have some problems occur, such as mistake in making order, to avoid this problem occur again, they should provide more training to their worker to improve their service system.
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