Analyzes the competition between Netscape and Microsoft in the market for Web browsers and related products. Despite its first mover advantage, Netscape sees its market share fall once Microsoft becomes "hard-core" about the Internet. By the spring of 1998, the future of both companies is on the line.
To maximize their effectiveness, color cases should be printed in color.As CEO of the world's largest oilseed processor, Alberto Weisser of Bunge must not only decide how quickly to expand in fast-growing markets of Eastern Europe and Asia, but also how best to leverage the firm's global footprint and leadership position. The firm is anticipating expanded demand for meat and oils in Asia, increased world trade in agricultural commodities and processed goods, increased volatility, and the possibility of new biotechnology-based products with special quality traits that will require segregated, identity-preserved supply chains from farm to food customer. Bunge is unique because of its focus, its integration from farm to consumer, its commitment to partnering, and its management style that emphasizes decentralization and local entrepreneurship. Includes color exhibits.
Examines the industry structure and competitive strategy of Coca-cola and Pepsi over 100 years of rivalry. New challenges of the 21st century included boosting flagging domestic cola sales and finding new revenue streams. Both firms also began to modify their bottling, pricing, and brand strategies. They looked to emerging international markets to fuel growth and broaden their brand portfolios to include noncarbonated beverages like tea, juice, sports drinks, and bottled water. For over a century, Coca-Cola and Pepsi-Cola had vied for the "throat share" of the world's beverage market.
The competition between Coke and Pepsi is a classic corporate battle that began in America at the turn of the century and has expanded into worldwide competitive warfare in the 1990s. This case examines the economics of the soft drink and bottling industries, and describes the history and internationalization of the cola wars.
Describes the development of a successful corporate strategy based on the acquisition and subsequent consolidation of low-technology manufacturing companies. Starting with a company history and discussion of current business segments, the case goes on to detail the innovation of corporate headquarters in strategy formulation and operations. Highlights the synergistic possibilities in alike acquisitions and addresses the issue of long-term value creation in acquisition-oriented firms. Emphasis is placed on the systems and procedures installed to implement the corporate strategy.
Describes the structure and recent trends of the metal container industry, Crown's successful strategy for competing in the industry, and John Connelly's leadership over more than 20 years. In 1989, William Avery succeeded Connelly as CEO and is forced to consider new strategic options in the face of industry change.
Founded in March 2000 at the height of the dot-com bubble, Global Healthcare Exchange (GHX) was one of 90 online marketplaces in the health care industry. The company's founders were among the largest suppliers in the industry, including Johnson & Johnson, GE Medical, Abbot, Baxter, and Medtronic. Becton-Dickinson, Braun, Guidant, Tyco, Siemens, C.R. Bard, and other key suppliers joined shortly after the company was founded.
Examines the turnaround of Gucci and its transition from a single brand to a multi-brand company. A rewritten version of an earlier case.
Describes three stages in Intel's history: the initial success and then collapse in DRAMs and EPROMs, its transition to and dominance in microprocessors, and its move to become the main supplier of the building blocks for the Internet economy. Allows a rich discussion of industry structure and transformation in DRAMs and microprocessors, creation of competitive advantage and value capture, and sustainability.
Describes the attempt of a traditional retailer, Barnes & Noble, to counter the challenges posed by an Internet-based start-up, Amazon.com.
Examines L'Oreal's acquisition of leading U.S. cosmetics brands, including Maybelline, Redken, and Kiehl's, and their subsequent renewal and globalization. Reviews the history of L'Oreal, now the world's largest cosmetics company, from its origins in France in 1907. The company entered the United States in 1953, and from 1990, expanded rapidly with the acquisition of U.S. brands, which were renewed and then taken international. Focuses on Kiehl's--since 1851, a quirky New York luxury brand--which L'Oreal acquired in 2000 and is now expanding globally.
Describes the multinational growth of Shiseido, the world's fourth-largest cosmetics company, with a focus on its strategy in China since 1981. Explores the challenges facing firms in the globalization of a culturally specific industry such as cosmetics. The Japanese company displayed an early interest in international expansion, but its early investments were lost during World War II. Thereafter, it sought to build businesses in Europe and North America, but was challenged by market conditions quite different from those in Japan. Even within its home market, deregulation and the entry of foreign firms during the 1990s led to a significant loss in market share. Shiseido entered China in 1981 and built Aupres, a large cosmetics brand specifically aimed at Chinese women. Further growth followed, and in 2003, plans were announced to build a large network of voluntary chain stores. Highlights managerial challenges of growing the China business further in the face of increasing competition and provides a framework for discussing the challenges of prioritizing the allocation of resources in a global business.
After years of success with its vaunted "Direct Model" for computer manufacturing, marketing, and distribution, Dell Computer Corp. faces efforts by competitors to match its strategy. The case 'Matching Dell' describes the evolution of the personal computer industry, Dell's strategy, and efforts by Compaq, IBM, Hewlett-Packard, and Gateway 2000 to capture the benefits of Dell's approach. Students are called on to formulate strategic plans of action for Dell and its various rivals.
Focuses on Microsoft's strategy for sustaining competitive advantage in the global software industry. Also, explores Microsoft's history and its current position, as it tries to diversify its product and service revenue streams.
This case is accompanied by a Video Short that can be shown in class or included in a digital coursepack. Instructors should consider the timing of making the video available to students, as it may reveal key case details.Nucor is a minimill deciding whether to spend a significant fraction of its net worth on a commercially unproven technology in order to penetrate a large but hitherto inaccessible segment of the steel market. This case is an integrative one designed to facilitate full-blown analysis of a strategic investment decision.
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The home video-game industry began in 1972 with the founding of Atari. After riding a dramatic boom and bust in the early 1980s, most players left the business. Nintendo of Japan then rebuilt the industry--establishing a commanding worldwide position by the end of the decade. By 1990, Nintendo game systems could be found in one out of every three households--in both Japan and the United States. The company's stock market value exceeded that of Sony or Nissan. The case describes the steps Nintendo took to achieve this success. Also covers the U.S. antitrust investigation of Nintendo.
To maximize their effectiveness, color cases should be printed in color.When is it possible to create a dual advantage of being both low cost and differentiated? In this case, students assess whether Samsung Electronics has been able to achieve such a dual advantage, and if so, how this was possible. Moreover, Samsung Electronics' long-held competitive advantage is under renewed attack. Students also can assess how Samsung should respond to large-scale Chinese entry into its industry.
Ready-to-eat breakfast cereal has historically been a stable and highly profitable industry, dominated by the Big Three of Kellogg, General Mills, and Kraft General Foods (Post). In 1994, private label cereals are making significant market share gains, and promotional competition among the manufacturers of branded cereals is heating up. What steps should one of the Big Three take to prevent these trends from undermining industry profitability, especially in light of likely competitor reactions?
This case is available in only hard copy format (HBP does not have digital distribution rights to the content). As a result, a digital Educator Copy of the case is not available through this web site.QUALCOMM, Inc. had transitioned from a fledgling startup into a Fortune 500 wireless technology leader. Its CDMA technology was considered the preeminent technology and was the world's fastest growing wireless communications technology. CEO Irwin Jacobs had a number of concerns as he determined how to sustain the company's success. How should the company allocate its resources among products? How could QUALCOMM encourage other countries--China and India in particular--to move to CDMA-based systems? How should QUALCOMM defend its position against other new technologies?
To maximize their effectiveness, color cases should be printed in color.Space Data Corp. plans to partner with the U.S. National Weather Service to place transceivers on weather balloons and thereby create a national mobile communications network. The company is in the late development stages and is planning to launch a regional test that will demonstrate its ability to provide paging and messaging. It intends to sell its service to existing mobile carriers, such as Skytel and Verizon, rather than directly to end users.
Saturn was General Motors' (GM) response to Japanese companies' dominance of the small car market during the mid-1980s. In the three-and-a-half years since its first sedan rolled off the assembly line, the Saturn Corp. had accumulated an impressive list of achievements. In April, 1994 Saturn's top management team met with GM's leadership to discuss the subsidiary's business plan. As Saturn's president reflected on the company's future and on his experience at GM, he felt confident that the executive committee would approve expansion if the Saturn team showed that it had achieved a sustainable position. Illustrates strategic analysis of sustainable competitive advantage.
The two division of Humana – Health Plan and Hospitals – are growing increasingly divergent with the passage of time. Although the company has not fallen into any trouble, there are clear signs that the company’s performance is deteriorating. The company has suffered has received some negative publicity and conflicts of interests regarding the inter-company transaction between the two business segments. The company has identified some potent alternatives to address its problems. It is believed that the spin off option is the most effective of those options. The company’s business segments have been independently valued using the multiples as well as the discounted value approach. It is believed that the spinoff would add considerable value to the company. It is, therefore, recommended that the company proceeds with the spin-off option.
The principal players in WorldCom's accounting fraud included CFO Scott Sullivan, the General Accounting and Internal Audit departments, external auditor Arthur Andersen, and the board of directors. The case provides sufficient detail to allow for a full discussion of the pressures that lead executives and managers to "cook the books," the boundary between earnings smoothing or management and fraudulent reporting, the role for internal control systems and internal audit to prevent or rapidly detect accounting fraud, the expectations about governance processes performed by external auditors and the board of directors, and the pressure and consequences when middle managers follow orders that they know are wrong. Written from the public record, the case contains numerous quotes from an individual involved in the WorldCom fraud that were reported by the Investigative Committee and Wall Street Journal articles about several of the individuals caught up in the situation.
On April 4, 2010, Apple Inc. launched the iPad, the company's third major innovation released over the last decade under its iconic CEO Steve Jobs. Apple's strategy of shifting its business into non-PC products had thrived so far, driven by the smashing success of the iPod and the iPhone. Yet challenges abounded. Macintosh sales in the worldwide PC market still languished below 5%. Growth in iPod sales was slowing down. iPhone faced increasing competition in the smartphone industry. And would Apple's latest creation, the iPad, take the company to the next level?
Describes a company that had traditionally followed a strategy quite distinct from its major competitors', its eventual decision to imitate them, and its subsequent performance.
In the wake of a highly successful quarter, senior managers of Airborne Express, the third largest player in the express mail industry, review the firm's competitive position. Airborne has survived, and recently prospered, in an industry with significant economies of scale even though it is much smaller than industry giants Federal Express and United Parcel Service. The case challenges students to understand Airborne's unusual position. Detailed data allow students to analyze Airborne's relative cost position, the fit among its activities, the differences between Airborne and its rivals, and the evolution of its industry. Using these analyses, students make recommendations concerning the firm's pricing policy, its globalization efforts, and a partnership with a related company. Designed to be taught in a course on business-unit strategy.
In 1980, Apple was the leader of the personal computer industry, but by 2002 it had suffered heavy losses at the hands of the Wintel camp. This case examines Apple's strategic moves as the PC industry evolves in the 21st century and poses the question: Can Steve Jobs make Apple "insanely great" again?
In 1980, Apple was the leader of the PC industry, but by 1999, it had suffered heavy losses at the hands of the Wintel camp. This case examines Apple's efforts to create sustainable competitive advantage as the PC industry evolves. After discussing Apple's history and past strategic moves (1977-1999), the case poses the question: Can Steve Jobs make Apple "insanely great" again?
The NutraSweet Co. has very successfully marketed aspartame, a low-calorie, high-intensity sweetener, around the world. NutraSweet's position was protected by patents until 1987 in Europe, Canada, and Japan, and until the end of 1992 in the United States. The case series describes the competition that ensued between NutraSweet and the Holland Sweetener Co. (HSC) following HSC's entry into the aspartame market in 1987. Describes the subsequent move and countermove in both the marketplace and the courts. Also, discusses the business "game" that takes place at both the tactical and value levels. Ends with the final countdown to the expiration of NutraSweet's U.S. patent.
Describes the rivalry between two competitors who have attempted to become the dominant force in the emerging British satellite television industry. Can be used to examine issues of competitive positioning, technology adoption, and scenario analysis. Helps students make decisions given competitive challenges and industry uncertainties.
This case is accompanied by a Video Short that can be shown in class or included in a digital coursepack. Instructors should consider the timing of making the video available to students, as it may reveal key case details.As dramatic changes in technology and customer tastes roil the music industry, the top executives of BMG Entertainment, one of the world's largest record companies, must decide how to organize for digital distribution of music. This case includes a brief history of the music industry, a description of the industry's current structure and economics, and a description of digital downloading efforts.
Traces Intel's history and strategy from 1968 to 1997. Examines the company's decision to exit DRAMS and its entry into microprocessors. Focuses on how the company managed to achieve and sustain its competitive advantage in microprocessors, and the threats it faces in the future.
When a new banana import policy is implemented in 1993 by the European Union, Chiquita Brands International, the world's largest banana distributor, watches its sales and net income plummet. The policy, Council Regulation (EEC 404/93), uses a new tariff and quota scheme to support the import of European territory bananas and significantly reduce Latin American banana imports, Chiquita's primary business. As a result, Chiquita sustains losses totaling $400 million between 1992 and 1994. To combat the EU policy, Chiquita files a Section 301 Petition with the U.S. Trade Representative. Yet CEO Keith Linde knows that even a successful 301 investigation can produce only medium-to long-term results. In 1995, Chiquita still faces the immediate necessity of improving the company's grim financial position.
Dropbox is a venture-backed Silicon Valley startup, founded in 2006, that provides online storage and backup services to millions of customers using a "freemium" (free + premium offers) business model. The case recounts Dropbox's history from conception through mid-2010, when founder/CEO Drew Houston must make strategic decisions about new product features, how to target enterprise customers, and whether to pursue distribution deals with smartphone manufacturers.
When students have the English-language PDF of this Brief Case in a coursepack, they will also have the option to purchase an audio version. A diversified mid-sized manufacturer of kitchen tools contemplates a stock repurchase in response to an unsolicited takeover. The company must determine the optimal debt capacity and capital structure, and subsequently estimate the resulting change in firm value and stock price. Attention is also given to the value of interest tax shields.
When students have the English-language PDF of this Brief Case in a coursepack, they will also have the option to purchase an audio version. Alex Sander is a new product manager whose drive and talents are attractive to management, but whose intolerant style has alienated employees. This tension is presented against the backdrop of a 360° performance review process. Sander works in the Toiletries Division of Landon Care Products, which has recently been acquired by a European beauty company. Sander is leading the launch of a European skin care product into the U.S. market, which requires working with a multinational product development team. Sander's interactions with peers and direct reports in the case paint a picture of a tough, inflexible high achiever who uses temper as a management tool. At the end of the day, Sander's supervisor Sam Glass will provide Sander with 360° performance feedback-the first time this process has been used at Landon. Sander remains skeptical about the value of the process and feedback, and of a long-term fit with the organization. On the other hand, Glass has a very high personal interest in keeping Sander at the company, but wonders how the organization can best develop and manage this star performer.
Retaining talent is an issue for any company whose success relies on the creativity and excellence of its employees. This is especially true for Cirque du Soleil, the spectacularly successful "circus without animals," whose 2,100 employees include 500 artists--mimes, clowns, acrobats, gymnasts, musicians, and production professionals. Managing a company full of creative people is a juggling act in itself, between keeping its artists happy and pursuing a successful strategy for attracting more business and talent.
Reviews Cisco System's approach to implementing Oracle's Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software product. This case chronologically reviews the diverse, critical success factors and obstacles facing Cisco during its implementation. Cisco faced the need for information systems replacement based on its significant growth potential and its reliance on failing legacy systems. The discussion focuses on where management was particularly savvy in contrast to where it was the beneficiary of good fortune.
In January 2010, Google threatened in a public statement to stop censoring its search results on its google.cn website, as required by Chinese authorities. Should Google exit China? Or attempt a compromise with the Chinese government?
This case is accompanied by a Video Short that can be shown in class or included in a digital coursepack. Instructors should consider the timing of making the video available to students, as it may reveal key case details. Examines the evolution of Dove from functional brand to a brand with a point of view after Unilever designated it as a masterbrand, and expanded its portfolio to cover entries into a number of sectors beyond the original bath soap category. The development causes the brand team to take a fresh look at the cliches of the beauty industry. The result is the controversial Real Beauty campaign. As the campaign unfolds, Unilever learns to use the Internet, and particularly social network media like YouTube, to manage controversy.
A second-year Harvard MBA student considers the pros and cons of three job offers. He identifies several concerns and evaluates each job in terms of how well they meet these concerns. He assesses probabilities for whether the jobs will be successful for him.
This interactive online simulation allows students to try their hands at managing the complexities of a global supply chain by putting them in the shoes of the supply chain manager of a mobile phone manufacturer. Students become responsible for the rollout of two models of mobile phones. Illustrates key concepts of supply chain management, such as: creating a balanced supply chain across suppliers with different lead times, building flexibility into the supply chain to avoid stock-outs and excess inventory, and evaluating and using demand forecasts. Student success is measured by company profits as well as through a dynamic evaluation process in which students answer probing questions from the company's board members. Students can use the simulation individually or in teams. Users must have an Internet connection (dial-up or other) and a personal computer that meets minimum technical requirements.
The coach of the varsity Army crew team at West Point assembled his top eight rowers into the first crew team and the second tier of rowers into the second team using objective data on individual performance. As the second boat continually beat the first boat in races, the coach attempted to discern the team dynamics causing these aberrant results. By using very clean, objective performance data, the case makes clear that a team can be more (or less) than the sum of its individual parts, but allows students to analyze the factors that make this true.
Discusses the development of a chain of "theme" restaurants. The student is asked to evaluate the current operating strategy and suggest a long-term expansion strategy.
United Parcel Service (UPS) in 1987 faced serious challenges to its long-standing policies of on-the-job training and promotion from within. Increased competition in its traditional business of ground transport found UPS lagging in computerization and in need of technical expertise it could not simply cull from within its ranks.
Even the most seasoned executives may have strongly opposing views about the wisest course of action for an organization, particularly given their diverse personal backgrounds or previous immersion in other corporate cultures. But such differences in approach don't necessarily lead to conflicts that are unproductive and damaging to an organization. To investigate such issues, the authors conducted a study of the organizational values (objectives that an individual or group believes are important in running a business, such as industry leadership, employee welfare, and profit maximization) of the top management teams in 31 companies. The authors investigated two specific types of team conflict: task and relationship. Task conflict is characterized by substantive, issue-related differences in opinion. This type of disagreement can be beneficial when it ensures that a greater number of possible solutions are explored. In contrast, relationship conflict--characterized by disagreements over personalized, individually oriented matters--is generally detrimental.
GE believes its ability to develop management talent is a core competency that represents a source of sustainable competitive advantage. Traces the development of a 25-year-old MBA named Jeff Immelt, who 18 years later is named as CEO of GE, arguably the biggest and most complex corporate leadership job in the world, and how he frames and implements his priorities for GE.
Hansson Private Label (HPL) is a manufacturer of personal care products such as shampoo, soap, mouthwash, sunscreen and shaving cream. The company started in 1992 when it purchased assets from Simon Health and Beauty Products. The company was purchased by Mr Hanson for $42 million - $17 million of which was raised through debt financing. The investment represented significant risk for Hanson because a significant portion of his wealth was tied up is a single investment. However, Hanson considered it an attractive investment because he believed that he was paying significantly less than the replacement cost of the assets purchased. Over the past sixteen years, Hanson has grown the company at a conservative but persistent fashion. He is now faced with an investment opportunity that promises swift growth, but also accompanies significant amount of risk.
Amoco wanted to sell MW petroleum to Apache, and this acquisition was quite worth for the both companies. Amoco being a large company wanted to focus more on attractive and productive properties instead of the small properties with the high cost structure. On the other hand, Apache was quite good at the attracting the small- to medium-sized properties and making them cost efficient using its strategies. Aggregative MV reserves have been valued using the discounted cash flow approach. Proved Developed reserves already producing oil and gas, and are quite certain and hence are considered as assets in place. While the reserves including the proved undeveloped, probable and possible reserves carry real options, which have been evaluated using Black Scholes Option Pricing Model.
Match my doll clothing line currently comprises of matching doll and child clothing and accessories for warm weather only. This line is very profitable because of its popularity and it is the in-fashion thing now-a-days. Daughters of a few celebrities have been found wearing these outfits and trendy magazines include these outfits in their hot section which make them highly desirable by the general populace. Expanding this line to cater to all seasons is a lucrative opportunity. The cash flows of this project stabilize after the first three years of operation i.e. the product line matures in 3 years of the operation. Also, the net working capital requirement of this project stabilizes in three years of operation, and is much lower as compared to the other project.
Midland Energy Resources has its operations divided amongst three separate divisions. The divisions have different functions and need separate discount rate to evaluate its projects. The cost of capital is very critical in Midland as it used for many diverse purposes. Therefore, it is important to calculate an accurate cost of capital. The Weighted Average Cost of Capital is used to discount Midland’s cash flows. Cost of debt is comparatively easier to calculate using a ‘bond yield plus risk premium’ approach. The cost of equity is calculated using the Capital Asset Pricing Model (CAPM). In CAPM, the calculation of beta requires significant judgment.
Yell Group consists of two businesses that are operating across countries. Yellow Pages is a classified directory business in the UK, while Yellow Book is an independent directory business in the USA. These businesses are currently owned by British Telecom which is contemplating a sale in order to reduce its leverage. Apax Partner and Hick Muse are two private equity firms that are interested in buying the Yell Group. The private equity firms face a challenge when valuing a cross border business involved in a LBO. It is believed that Yell Group can be best valued using the Adjusted Present Value Approach, which individually measures the debt and equity of a company. The equity can be valued by discounted the Capital Cash Flows by the unlevered cost of equity capital. Whereas, the value of debt equals the tax shield generated by each strand of debt. During the valuation process, the management’s calculations are evaluated and complemented to arrive at a proposed bid price for the Yell Group.
Reed's Supermarket is among prominent food retail chains of USA with a strong presence in Columbus region of Ohio. The retail chain commands around seventeen percent of market share in the Columbus region. Columbus is the largest city and the state capital of the US state of Ohio. It is considered among the most important region for Reed Supermarkets with respect to the size of the market and having the greatest impact on revenue growth of the business. There is growing competition in the retail industry of this city with the emergence of newer pattern of stores, recessionary cycle of the economy and decreasing differentiation between stores.
The case is about Dow Chemicals’ bid for the privatization of Petroquimica Bahia Blanca (PBB). PBB, a producer of both Ethylene and Polyethylene in Argentina, is being privatized by the local government. Dow holds a leading market position in Ethylene and Polyethylene, and wants to utilize this opportunity to expand into Argentina. Dow has developed a three-stage operational strategy for expansion of its polyethylene operations in Argentina. The acquisition of PBB represents the first stage of the strategy and provides a gateway to the second and third stage. The cash flows from each stage of the project have been valued using the discounted cash flow (DCF) approach.
AES has been using a single discount rate for all of its operations – an equity discount rate of 12% based on US data. This discount rate was quite appropriate in the past when most of the operations were based in US. However, the recent expansion of AES into different geographical areas has exposed the diverse operations of the company to varied amounts of risk. The company is now contemplating the use of different discount rates for each of its projects. It is suggested that the costs of equity and debt are adjusted for sovereign spread – the difference in the riskfree rates of the local country and the US. The WACC is later adjusted for the project-specific risks based on a broad range of seven categories including exchange rates, regulatory environment, and operational complexities. It is determined that the new methodology results in a broad range of discounts rates – ranging from around 10% to 30%.