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Case Study in Whole Essay

This is a case about the challenges an established firm has to face when a new technology produces disruptive effects on its core business. The case then offers an example of core capabilities that become obsolete with the entry of new technologies that require new resources and capabilities. Broad theoretical issues that must be considered when preparing this case: ? How can a mature, successful firm survive a disruptive technology? ? How can are new capabilities built and which ones of these new capabilities are most difficult to develop or acquire in the market for strategic factors?

Specific questions for the preparation of the case-study 1. Did Kodak need to divest its chemical and pharmaceuticals businesses? Why couldn’t it expand into digital imaging while maintaining its chemical and healthcare interests? 2. What is Kodak’s strategy for building a presence in digital imaging? 3. Does Kodak possess the resources and capabilities needed to be successful in the market for digital imaging products? How is Kodak acquiring and building the capabilities it needs? 4. How does the organization of Kodak’s value chain change from traditional photography to digital imaging? 4. What advice would you offer Dan Carp?

5. What about the performance of this group today? Has Kodak managed to face the challenges of digital imaging? Material for the preparation of the case-study (theoretical background) ? ? Ghemawat P. (2006). Strategy and the Business Landscape. Pearson International Edition. Ch. 5. Besanko D. , Dranove D. , Shanley M. (2004). Economics of Strategy, Wiley. Ch. 14. ? Eisenhardt, K. and J. Martin (2000). Dynamic capabilities: What are they? Strategic Management Journal, (21),pp. 1105-1122 Material specific to this case-study ? R. Grant (2003) Cases in Contemporary Strategy 3rd ed. Blackwell, Oxford. 2.

Case 2 Virgin This is a case on diversification strategy. The case illustrates the difficulties in managing a diversified set of businesses and the consequences of a chaotic growth on performance. Broad theoretical issues that must be considered when preparing this case: ? how can very different businesses be managed by a single company without destroying value? ? How is it possible to extend a brand without damaging corporate integrity and strategic fit? ? How is it possible to reconcile the entrepreneurial spirit typical of ‘serial’ entrepreneurs with effective control of a large diversified corporation?

Specific questions for the preparation of the case-study 1. What common resources and capabilities link the separate Virgin companies? 2. Which businesses, if any, should Branson consider divesting? 3. What criteria should Branson apply in deciding what new diversification to pursue? 4. What changes in the financial structure, organizational structure, and management systems of the Virgin group would you recommend? 5. What about the financial and market performance of Virgin Group today? Material for the preparation of the case-study (theoretical background) ? ? Ghemawat P. (2006).

Strategy and the Business Landscape. Pearson International Edition. Ch. 5 and 6. Besanko D. , Dranove D. , Shanley M. (2004). Economics of Strategy, Wiley. Ch. 7. Montgomery, C. A. (1994). Corporate diversification. Journal of Economic Perspectives 8 (3), 163– 178. ? Material specific to this case-study ? R. Grant (2003) Cases in Contemporary Strategy 3rd ed. Blackwell, Oxford. 3 Case 3 General Electric This is a case on the strategy of conglomerate corporations and the role of leadership in the creation of novel approaches to strategy and management of companies operating in mature markets.

Broad theoretical issues that must be considered when preparing this case: ? What are the most effective systems to coordinate and control a multi-product firm? ? How and at what conditions a diversified firm create value for its shareholders? ? How can a single charismatic leader can shape the performance of a large diversified corporation and how can his ability be transmitted to executive successors? Specific questions for the preparation of the case-study 1. What were the principal strategic and organizational changes introduced by Welch at GE and inherited by Immelt?

2. Why has the strategy, structure, and systems created by Welch at GE been so successful, not just in delivering shareholder value during the 1980s and 1990s, but also in making GE seemingly invulnerable to the calls for breakup that have overwhelmed most other conglomerates? 3. Can you detect a theory of management or set of general principles that link together Welch’s various initiatives? 4. To what extent should other large, diversified corporations imitate the management systems and leadership style developed by Welch at GE? 5.

What changes in strategy, organizational structure, and management systems and style should Jeff Immelt be implementing in order to sustain and revive GE’s track record of superior performance? In particular, should GE consider breakup (like so many other highly diversified companies)? 6. What about GE’s strategy, structure and performance today? Material for the preparation of the case-study (theoretical background) ? ? Ghemawat P. (2006). Strategy and the Business Landscape. Pearson International Edition. Ch. 5 and 6. Besanko D. , Dranove D. , Shanley M. (2004).

Economics of Strategy, Wiley. Ch. 7. Material specific to this case-study ? R. Grant (2003) Cases in Contemporary Strategy 3rd ed. Blackwell, Oxford. 4 Case 4 IKEA This case is about the sources of competitive advantage and strategic fit. Vertical integration choices and organization of networks are at the core of operational effectiveness. However, strategic positioning aiming at offering unique products or doing things differently are also important to explain sustained competitive advantage. Broad theoretical issues that must be considered when preparing this case: ?

? How is it possible to reconcile efficiency and product differentiation in a mature industry like furniture retail? Under which circumstances a strategy centered on limited vertical integration and long-term relationships with partners allows an effective control of the value chain (or the value system) and sustainable competitive advantage? Specific questions for the preparation of the case-study 1. 2. 3. What factors account for the success of IKEA? What is the role of supply chain management and the organization of business network? What do you think of the company’s product strategy and product range?

Do you agree with the matrix approach described in Figure B of the case? Despite its success, there are many downsides to shopping at IKEA. What are some of these downsides? IKEA’s Vision Statement (in Figure C of the case) describes how the company seeks to build a “partnership” with its customers. What do you think of this vision statement? The fact that IKES hopes to have fifty stores in operation in the United States by 2013 is an indication of how optimistic the company is about the viability of its value proposition in this country. Do you think IKEA is being overly optimistic in its growth plans?

How would you improve IKEA’s value proposition to make it even more attractive to American consumers? To achieve the kind of growth that IKEA is hoping for, should the company change its product strategy? If so, in what way(s)? What about its product range-are there limitations to the matrix approach? Should the company expand its product lineup to include a greater number of styles and price points? In what other ways should the company consider changing its products lineup? If you had to predict, what do you think IKEA’s value proposition and product lineup will look like in ten years?

Some industry observers have suggested that IKEA should open a number of smaller, satellite stores across the United States (e. g. , in shopping malls, strip malls, etc. ). By offering limited range of IKEA products, these “IKEA Lite” shops would presumably give consumers who do not otherwise have access to a full-size IKEA the opportunity to experience the brand. In addition, consumers who do live near full-size IKEA would be able to use these mini outlets to make minor purchase (e. g. , purchase a set of mugs, as opposed to an entire living room set). Do you agree with this idea?

Why or why not? 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. Material for the preparation of the case-study (theoretical background) ? Besanko D. , Dranove D. , Shanley M. (2004). Economics of Strategy, Wiley. Ch. 5 and 6. ? M. E. Porter. 1996. What is Strategy. Harvard Business Review. November-December, 61-78. Material specific to this case-study ? E. Baraldi. 2008. Strategy in Industrial Networks: Experiences from IKEA. California Management Review, 50(4). 5 Case 5 Apple This case discusses the advantages and disadvantages of first-movers in markets characterized by network externalities.

The cases shows how difficult is gaining a sustainable competitive advantage and under which circumstances a firm can regain a strong market position after a period of decline. Broad theoretical issues that must be considered when preparing this case: ? Which strategies allow gaining a sustainable competitive advantage in industries dominated by standards and network externalities? ? How important are a firm’s resources and innovation and how important is strategic positioning? ? Under which circumstances can a company avoid disruptive competition?

Under which circumstances can a company turn a competitive disadvantage to a competitive advantage? Specific questions for the preparation of the case-study ? ? ? ? ? ? ? How has the PC industry changed over the last 15 years and what are the implications for strategic positioning? What were Apple’s sources of competitive advantage in the early years of the PC industry? What are the main errors which led Apple to a marginal market niche in this industry? How evaluate Apple’s strategies in the 1990s? How did Apple’s strategy change with the iPod/iTunes? Why the iPod/iTunes success has been beneficial to Apple’s PC business?

How do you see the future of Apple after Steve Jobs? Material for the preparation of the case-study (theoretical background) ? Ghemawat P. (2006). Strategy and the Business Landscape. Pearson International Edition. Ch. 5. ? Besanko D. , Dranove D. , Shanley M. (2004). Economics of Strategy, Wiley. Ch. 14. ? W. C. Kim and Mauborgne, R. 2004. Blue Ocean Strategy.

Harvard Business Review. October, 76-84. Material specific to this case-study Yoffie D. , Slind M. (2007). Apple Computer, 2006, May 30, HBS Case #: 9-706-496. 6 PART II 7 Case 6 FDI in China FDI in China is a case about the successful record of the People’s Republic of China in attracting foreign direct investment (FDI) in the late twentieth century.

The purpose of this case is to analyze what has been good and potentially bad about the phenomenon of FDI in China, and to look at the huge inflows of FDI primarily from the perspective of China’s domestic firms. Broad theoretical issues that must be considered when preparing this case: ? Why do firms acquire or establish operations abroad instead of exporting and licensing out? ? What theoretical perspective(s) can explain the nature and direction of FDIs? ? How can host countries attract more FDIs?

What are the benefits and costs of FDIs to a host country? Specific questions for the preparation of the case-study ? Did China’s FDI policies and regulations evolve in the right direction? ? What explains China’s attractiveness to foreign investors? ? Why does fast economic growth and large market size attract FDIs? ? What are the benefits associated with FDIs for the Chinese economy? ? Why didn’t domestic firms increase their investments at the same rate as foreign firms? Aren’t domestic firms’ incentives/ability to invest different? ? How does FDIs help state-owned enterprises?

Can other countries replicate China’s experience? References for the preparation of the case-study (theoretical background) Hill C. W. L. (2009). International business, McGraw Hill, chapters 7, 14. References specific to this case-study Huang, Y. (2003). FDI in China, June 2003. HBS case # 9-701-061. 8 Case 7. BRL Hardy: Globalizing an Australian Wine Company The case is framed around two key product launch decisions faced by Christopher Carson, Managing Director of BRL Hardy Europe and Steve Millar, Managing Director of the parent company, BRL Hardy Limited, Australia’s second largest wine producer.

The decisions made by these top managers will shape not only the company’s future strategy but also the organization model and the management approach it will adopt in its fast-growing global business. Broad theoretical issues that must be considered when preparing this case: ? What strategies can be implemented to develop effective headquarters-subsidiary relationships? ? What are the forces driving and constraining the need for cross-market coordination versus the imperative for local market differentiation? ? What are the main issues related to market segmentation that managers in international business need to be aware of?

Specific questions for the preparation of the case-study ? How do you account for BRL Hardy’s international success in the wake of the merger of two industry “dogs”? ? What determined the tension between Stephen Davies and Christopher Carson? How effectively has Steve Millar handled their differences? ? If you had been in Steve Millar’s position, how you would have managed this tension? Would you have intervened? ? Should Millar agree to Carson’s proposal to launch D’istinto? ? What action should Millar take regarding the competing proposals for Banrock Station and Kelly’s Revenge?

References for the preparation of the case-study (theoretical background) Hill C. W. L. (2009). International business, McGraw Hill, chapters 12, 14, 17. References specific to this case-study Bartlett, C. A. (2003). BRL Hardy: Globalizing an Australian Wine Company, October 2003. HBS case # 9-300-018. 9 Case 8 METRO Cash & Carry The case compares the entry strategies and operational performance of German wholesaler Metro Cash & Carry (MCC) in three major emerging markets: Russia, China, and India. After building up successful operations in Russia and China, MCC struggled to find a strategic positioning in India.

MCC’s experiences in the three countries highlight similarities and differences in institutional context across emerging markets and call attention to the need for multinationals to tailor their country strategies. Broad theoretical issues that must be considered when preparing this case: ? Which political, economic and social characteristics make a foreign market more attractive? ? What are the major advantages and disadvantages of an early entry into a foreign market? ? How to choose the most appropriate mode of entry? Specific questions for the preparation of the case-study ?

What have been MCC’s key competitive advantages as it has moved into emerging markets? ? What role did institutional context play in challenging MCC’s efforts to prove the value proposition of its unique wholesaling format and establish itself as an accepted corporate citizen in Russia, India, and China? ? After finding so much success in Russia and China, why has MCC had such a slow start in India? ? What challenges could the company have avoided in its India operations? ? What good moves did the company make? Is there room for MCC to pursuit partnerships in India? Is a joint venture off the table?

How would you rethink MCC’s approach to strategic expansion and public relations in India going forward? References for the preparation of the case-study (theoretical background) Hill C. W. L. (2009). International business, McGraw Hill, chapters 13, 14. References specific to this case-study Khanna, T. , K. Palepu, C. A. Knoop, D. Lane (2007). Metro Cash & Carry, May 2007. HBS case # 9-707-505. 10 Case 9 Lamoiyan Corporation of the Philippines: Challanging Multinational Giants A local Philippine toothpaste manufacturer, Lamoiyan Corp. , faces the challenge of staying competitive against entrenched multinational giants.

The company has managed to capture, at its peak, 20% of the Philippine toothpaste market and has become the number three Philippine toothpaste producer, after Colgate-Palmolive and Unilever. However, competition will soon intensify in the region as a result of decreasing trade barriers, and Cecilio Petro, president of Lamoiyan Corp. , needs to decide how to grow his company and keep it competitive. Going public, expanding channel penetration, developing new products, and expanding internationally are all strategies Pedro considers, but each move is costly and time consuming.

Pedro, an optimistic, dedicated entrepreneur, must assess the best way to ensure Lamoiyan’s future success. Broad theoretical issues that must be considered when preparing this case ? Competition in many industries prompt firms to adopt a transnational strategy. What are the factors that such a strategy involves? What are the difficulties that implementing such a strategy brings about? ? What are the main issues related to market segmentation that managers in international business need to be aware of? ? What are the pricing strategies that managers in international business can effectively adopt?

Specific questions for the preparation of the case-study ? How do you evaluate Lamoiyan’s entry strategy in the Philippine toothpaste market? ? Why didn’t Colgate and Unilever crush Lamoiyan earlier? What factor or factors do you think were the most important in driving the hesitancy to respond? ? Is Lamoiyan’s success attributable to good strategy by Lamoiyan or bad strategy by Colgate and Unilever? What aspects of Cecilio Pedro’s strategy were most important in allowing Lamoiyan to survive and thrive?

How do you evaluate each of the avenues of growth that Lamoiyan is pursuing (increased market penetration, expanding product offerings, and international expansion)? Which option shows the most promise? Which option most concerns you? ? Are there generalizable lessons from the Lamoiyan case? References for the preparation of the case-study (theoretical background) Hill C. W. L. (2009). International business, McGraw Hill, chapters 12, 17. References specific to this case-study Coughlan, P. J. , J. L. Illes (2003). Lamoiyan Corporation of the Philippines: Challanging Multinational Giants, August 2003. HBS case # 9-704-405. 11.


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