Ivey Publishing

Strategic Management: Building and Sustaining Competitive Advantage

Pitts, R., Lei, D.,4/e (United States, Cengage Learning, 2006)
Prepared By Kevin K. Boeh, Ph.D. Student (General Management)
Chapter and Title Chapter Matches: Case Information
Chapter 1:
The Strategic Management Process

Mary M. Crossan, Ken Mark

Product Number: 9B02M006
Publication Date: 4/25/2002
Revision Date: 12/1/2009
Length: 16 pages

The president and chief executive officer of a large food manufacturer is preparing his company's strategic agenda for the next five years. One of the top five food manufacturers in Canada, the company went public and restructured its management team six years ago. The efforts were successful, resulting in an increase in the company's market share. Recent food industry trends, however, added box stores and private label brands to the domestic competition. At the same time, the terms of the Canada-U.S. Free Trade Agreement are expected to abolish food-related tariffs within two years, opening up competition from across the border. While the company has experienced success in the past five years, the president and chief executive officer needs a strategic plan that will take the company to the next level.

Teaching Note: 8B02M06 (6 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: Communications; Crisis Management; Change Management; Strategy Development
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA

Paul W. Beamish, Kevin K. Boeh

Product Number: 9B04M044
Publication Date: 9/20/2004
Revision Date: 9/18/2008
Length: 22 pages

MapQuest is a leading provider of mapping services and destination information as well as a publisher of maps, atlases and other guides. On the Internet, they provide these products and services both to consumers directly and to other businesses enabling these businesses to provide location, mapping and destination information to their own customers. The company completed a successful initial public offering five years ago and were in a strong competitive position. However, the markets were allowing competitors to quickly get funding in both private and public deals. As well, there were perceptions that a general stock market bubble existed for technology companies. The chief executive officer had several options available, and wanted to consider those options and present a recommendation to the board. Possible options included splitting the firm's old and new-line business units, raising capital to fund an acquisition strategy, forging a set of alliances, focusing on organic growth, and pursuing the sale of the firm.

Teaching Note: 8B04M44 (6 pages)
Industry: Administrative, Support, Waste Management and Remediation Services
Issues: Corporate Strategy; Strategic Alliances; Competitive Advantage; Mergers & Acquisitions
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA

J. Nick Fry, John Bogert

Product Number: 9A96M002
Publication Date: 9/24/1996
Revision Date: 2/10/2010
Length: 15 pages

London Telecom Network is a fast growing reseller of long distance telephone services. The company has survived where many have failed and is starting to generate significant profits. Now management is beginning to look at a range of initiatives to further build the business. The situation raises some interesting questions for Rob Freeman, the founder and owner of the business. Are the circumstances right for the company to be pursuing new ideas? If so, which of the several proposals deserves priority attention?

Teaching Note: 8A96M02 (11 pages)
Industry: Information, Media & Telecommunications
Issues: Competitive Advantage; Management Behaviour; Strategic Planning
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA

Chapter 2:
Assessing Industry Attractiveness and the Competitive Environment

Paul W. Beamish, Jae C. Jung, Hun-Hee Kim

Product Number: 9B03M016
Publication Date: 4/2/2003
Revision Date: 10/22/2009
Length: 12 pages

A major U.S.-based fast food company with extensive operations around the world was contemplating whether or not they should enter the Korean market. The Korean fast food market was hit badly by the Asian economic crisis in the late 1990s, but the economy was turning around. Thus, fast food demand in Korea was expected to increase. For the industry analysis, this case provides information on various competitors, substitute foods, new entrants, consumers and suppliers. In addition, social issues are included as potential forces.

Teaching Note: 8B03M16 (15 pages)
Industry: Accommodation & Food Services
Issues: Industry Analysis; Market Entry; Fast Food; International Business
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA

Paul W. Beamish, Akash Kapoor

Product Number: 9B03M001
Publication Date: 2/27/2003
Revision Date: 10/21/2009
Length: 20 pages

The cigar industry in Cuba has a mythical aura and renown that give it unparalleled recognition worldwide. The relationship between Cuba and the United States makes the situation in this industry particularly intriguing. Cuban cigars cannot currently be sold in the United States, even though it is the largest premium cigar market in the world. This note provides an opportunity for a structured analysis using Porter's five forces model and to consider several scenarios including the possible lifting of the U.S. embargo and the relaxation of Cuba's land ownership laws.

Teaching Note: 8B03M01 (19 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: Government and Business; Internationalization; International Business; Industry Analysis
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA

Chapter 3:
Matching Firm Capabilities with Opportunities

Mary M. Crossan, Ariff Kachra

Product Number: 9A98M006
Publication Date: 5/14/1998
Revision Date: 5/10/2017
Length: 23 pages

Starbucks is faced with the issue of how it should leverage its core competencies against various opportunities for growth, including introducing its coffee in McDonald’s, pursuing further expansion of its retail operations, and leveraging the brand into other product areas. The case is written so that students need to first identify where Starbucks competencies lie along the value chain, and assess how well those competencies can be leveraged across the various alternatives. It also provides an opportunity for students to assess what is driving growth in this company. Starbucks has a tremendous appetite for cash since all its stores are corporate, and investors are betting that it will be able to continue its phenomenal growth, so it needs to walk a fine line between leveraging its brand to achieve growth while not eroding it in the process. This is an exciting case that quickly captures the attention of students.

Teaching Note: 8A98M06 (13 pages)
Industry: Accommodation & Food Services
Issues: competitiveness; industry analysis; growth strategy; core competence; coffee
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA

Rod E. White, Julian M. Birkinshaw

Product Number: 9A97M005
Publication Date: 9/2/1997
Revision Date: 11/18/2002
Length: 26 pages

The Saws and Tools division of Sandvik AB has developed a competence in ergonomic hand tools. Arguably, they are the world leader in this area. The division president hopes the Ergo strategy, coupled with selective acquisitions, will enable Sandvik to dominate the global market for professional hand tools. But after investing in this strategy for several years, it has produced, to date, mixed results. Many customers, particularly those in North America, appear unwilling to pay a premium for ergonomic hand tools. The president must decide whether to continue to invest in the Ergo hand tool strategy. Two issues are central to this case: (1) understanding that a successful strategy represents a balance between core competencies and customer value, and (2) one competency is hardly enough to break into a new market. Success of the Ergo strategy in Europe was not solely attributable to a competence in the manufacture of ergonomic hand tools; other elements like distribution also played a key role.

Teaching Note: 8A97M05 (7 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: Core Competence; Global Product; Globalization
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA

Chapter 4:
Building Competitive Advantage through Distinction

Tieying Huang, Junping Liang, Paul W. Beamish

Product Number: 9B04M033
Publication Date: 5/14/2004
Revision Date: 10/14/2009
Length: 6 pages

Jinjian Garment Factory is a large clothing manufacturer based in Shenzhen with distribution to Hong Kong and overseas. Although Shenzhen had become one of the most advanced garment manufacturing centres in the world, managers in this industry still had few effective ways of dealing with the collective and deliberate slow pace of work by the employees, of motivating workers, and of resolving the problem between seasonal production requirements and retention of skilled workers. However, the owner and managing director of the company must determine the reasons behind the deliberately slow pace of the workers, the pros and cons of the piecework system and the methods he could adopt to motivate the workers effectively.

Teaching Note: 8B04M33 (11 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: China; Productivity; Employee Attitude; Piece Work; Performance Measurement; Work-Force Management; Peking University
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA

Paul W. Beamish, Anthony Goerzen

Product Number: 9B00A019
Publication Date: 10/19/2000
Revision Date: 5/23/2017
Length: 19 pages

Interbrew had developed into the world's fourth largest brewer by acquiring and managing a large portfolio of national and regional beer brands in markets around the world. Recently, senior management had decided to develop one of their premium beers, Stella Artois, as a global brand. The early stages of Interbrew's global branding strategy and tactics are examined, enabling students to consider these concepts in the context of a fragmented but consolidating industry. It is suitable for use in courses in consumer marketing, international marketing and international business.

Teaching Note: 8B00A19 (10 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: Global Product; International Business; International Marketing; Brands
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA

Chapter 5:
Responding to Shifts in Competitive Advantage

Richard DeMartino

Product Number: 9B01M055
Publication Date: 9/27/2001
Revision Date: 12/22/2009
Length: 15 pages

Kodak's Health Imaging division is the second largest business unit within Kodak, a worldwide provider of consumer, professional and health imaging products. The regional manager of the Health Imaging division is preparing her presentation for the company's senior management retreat. The East Asian Crisis and its impact on the division are on the agenda. The regional manager reflects on the magnitude of the crisis, and she wonders if the company's responses were reactive instead of strategic. There will be some tough questions to rake through at the meeting. Did the Health Imaging department respond effectively to the crisis? Is Kodak better off because of the crisis? What will the short-term and long-term effects be? Will Kodak's response to the East Asian Crisis preserve customer relationships for the years to come? Information pertaining to Health Imaging's strategic view of the region, the company's organizational structure and the levers employed by Kodak in response to the crisis all serve to produce some answers for the division's future consideration. A supplementary (B) case is available, product 9B01M056.

Teaching Note: 8B01M55 (8 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: Foreign Exchange; Pricing Strategy; International Business; International Marketing
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA

Adrian B. Ryans, Mark B. Vandenbosch

Product Number: 9B00A009
Publication Date: 5/1/2000
Revision Date: 1/6/2010
Length: 22 pages

The new CEO of Compaq Computer, the world's second largest computer company, is facing some difficult decisions about how to combat the increasing threat posed by Dell Computer Corporation. The case describes the strategic moves made by Compaq in the late 1990s under the leadership of a previous CEO who was dismissed by Compaq's board earlier in the year. It also describes in some detail the history of Dell Computer and the evolution of the Dell Direct model. Compaq's new CEO faces some major issues, one of which is the resolution of the channel issues, particularly in the commercial personal computing segment. It is clear he faces some very tough strategic and marketing choices. The power of information technology and standards that have allowed Dell to build a powerful ecosystem with its customers, suppliers and complementers are illustrated in this powerful teaching case. With the support of these other players, Dell has been able to topple one of the great companies of the late 20th century from its leadership position. It also illustrates how difficult it is for a market leader to effectively respond to such a challenge.

Teaching Note: 8B00A09 (10 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: E-Commerce; Market Strategy; Marketing Channels; Competition
Difficulty: 5 - MBA/Postgraduate

Mary M. Crossan, D. Bruce Lanning, Iris Tiemessen

Product Number: 9A95M006
Publication Date: 8/18/1995
Revision Date: 2/18/2010
Length: 15 pages

The newly appointed senior vice-president of Canada Post Corporation's (CPC's) electronic products and services faced the challenge of assessing what impact the Information Superhighway (I-way) would have on CPC's future. CPC had transformed mail service in Canada from simplistic physical sorting to intelligent mechanized distribution. Although commercialization of the I-way attracted increasing news media and business attention daily, no one could answer exactly what the I-way would become, who would have access to it, who would administer the network, and how it would change CPC and other information transfer businesses. The case challenges students to analyze a complex and rapidly changing competitive environment where industry boundaries are blurred. (A 25-minute video can be purchased with this case, video 7A95M006.)

Teaching Note: 8A95M06 (15 pages)
Industry: Information, Media & Telecommunications
Issues: Industry Analysis; Competitiveness; Management of Technology; Policy Formulation/Implementation
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA

Chapter 6:
Corporate Strategy: Leveraging Resources

J. Nick Fry

Product Number: 9B00M010
Publication Date: 1/25/2001
Revision Date: 1/11/2010
Length: 9 pages

The Newell Company, a multi-billion dollar company dealing in hardware and home furnishings, office products and housewares, was contemplating a merger with Rubbermaid, a renowned manufacturer of plastic products. Newell had a remarkable record of success in growth by acquisition. Rubbermaid would mark a quantum step in this program, but equally, would pose a formidable challenge to Newell's capacity to integrate and strengthen acquisitions. Corporate strategy and advantage is studied, particularly through the Collis and Montgomery framework, to determine if the proposed merger is a step too far.

Teaching Note: 8B00M10 (7 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: Mergers & Acquisitions; Corporate Strategy
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA

Mark B. Vandenbosch, Ken Mark

Product Number: 9B02A021
Publication Date: 1/9/2003
Revision Date: 1/5/2004
Length: 12 pages

McDonald's, one of the world's strongest and most recognizable brands, intends to extend its world's best quick service restaurant experience brand into the hotel industry by launching a hotel in Illinois. An industry observer examines the hotel venture's positioning options and the McDonald's brand extension into a different product class.

Teaching Note: 8B02A21 (8 pages)
Industry: Accommodation & Food Services
Issues: Brand Management; Brand Extension; Market Analysis
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA

Chapter 7:
Global Strategy: Harnessing New Markets

Harold Crookell, Paul W. Beamish

Product Number: 9B06M015
Publication Date: 1/11/2006
Revision Date: 9/17/2009
Length: 10 pages

This case is about a small American auto parts producer trying to diversify his way out of dependence on the major automakers. A promising new product is developed and the company gets a chance to license it to a Scottish manufacturer. The issue of whether to license or go it alone in international markets is central to the case. (A sequel to this case is available titled Cameron Auto Parts (B) - Revised, case 9B06M016.)

Teaching Note: 8B06M15 (8 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: Corporate Strategy; Exports; Licensing; International Business
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA

Harold Crookell, Paul W. Beamish

Product Number: 9B06M016
Publication Date: 1/11/2006
Revision Date: 9/17/2009
Length: 10 pages

Two years after signing a license agreement in the U.K., the company now faces an opportunity to establish with another firm a joint venture in France for the European market. However, the prospect upsets the U.K. licensee who is clearly doing very well, and who even wants Cameron to consider joint venturing with him in Australia. The case ends with Cameron, run off its feet in North America, trying to decide whether to enter Europe via licensing, joint venture or direct investment. (This case is a sequel to Cameron Auto Parts (A) - Revised, case 9B06M015.)

Teaching Note: 8B06M16 (7 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: Licensing; Joint Ventures; International Business; Corporate Strategy
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA

Chapter 8:
Strategic Alliances: Partnering for Advantage

Charles Dhanaraj, Paul W. Beamish, Nikhil Celly

Product Number: 9B04M016
Publication Date: 5/14/2004
Revision Date: 3/13/2017
Length: 18 pages

Eli Lilly and Company is a leading U.S. pharmaceutical company. The new president of intercontinental operations is re-evaluating all of the company's divisions, including the joint venture with Ranbaxy Laboratories Limited, one of India's largest pharmaceutical companies. This joint venture has run smoothly for a number of years despite their differences in focus, but recently Ranbaxy was experiencing cash flow difficulties due to its network of international sales. In addition, the Indian government was changing regulations for businesses in India, and joining the World Trade Organization would have an effect on India's chemical and drug regulations. The president must determine if this international joint venture still fits Eli Lilly's strategic objectives.

Teaching Note: 8B04M16 (18 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: Joint Ventures; Emerging Markets; International Management; Strategic Alliances
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA

Paul W. Beamish, R. Azimah Ainuddin

Product Number: 9B06M006
Publication Date: 11/30/2005
Revision Date: 5/23/2012
Length: 16 pages

This case presents the perspective of a Malaysian company, Nora Bhd, which was in the process of trying to establish a telecommunications joint venture with a Finnish firm, Sakari Oy. Negotiations have broken down between the firms, and students are asked to try to restructure a win-win deal. The case examines some of the most common issues involved in partner selection and design in international joint ventures.

Teaching Note: 8B06M06 (12 pages)
Industry: Information, Media & Telecommunications
Issues: Intercultural Relations; Third World; Negotiation; Joint Ventures; Finland; Malaysia
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA

Chapter 9:
Designing Organizations for Advantage

J. Nick Fry, Julian M. Birkinshaw

Product Number: 9A94G005
Publication Date: 10/12/1994
Revision Date: 2/4/2010
Length: 8 pages

The business development manager for General Electric (GE) Canada, met with executives from GE Supply, a US-based distribution arm of GE. The purpose of the meeting was to discuss new business opportunities in energy management and efficiency. The business development manager had identified some opportunities for business development in Canada, while leveraging GE's strategic capabilities did not fit well with GE's corporate structure. He was keen to work with GE Supply but wanted to retain a high level of operating autonomy. The challenge was to put together an appropriate organizational structure and find a home for the new development idea. (A sequel to this case is available, GE Energy Management Initiative (B). A 12-minute video may also be purchased with this case, GE Energy Management Initiative - Video.)

Teaching Note: 8A94G05 (13 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: Organizational Structure; International Business; Multinational
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA

J. Nick Fry, Julian M. Birkinshaw

Product Number: 9A94G006
Publication Date: 10/12/1994
Revision Date: 7/4/2007
Length: 3 pages

Six months into the operation of the energy management business, GE Energy Management Initiative has lost a bid for a large contract. Its general manager learns that the division to which it reports is getting out of the energy management business because of a questionable strategic fit within the division, and a lack of results. The general manager wonders how to proceed. (This is a sequel to GE Energy Management Initiative (A).)

Teaching Note: 8A94G05 (13 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: Organizational Structure; Multinational; International Business
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA

Chapter 10:
Organizing and Learning to Sustain Value

Tom A. Poynter, Paul W. Beamish

Product Number: 9B01M004
Publication Date: 1/25/2001
Revision Date: 12/21/2009
Length: 12 pages

Victoria Heavy Equipment (Victoria) was a family owned and managed firm which had been led by an ambitious, entrepreneurial chief executive officer who now wanted to take a less active role in the business. Victoria had been through two reorganizations in recent years, which contributed to organizational and strategic issues which would need to be addressed by a new president.

Teaching Note: 8B01M04 (8 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: Growth Strategy; Decentralization; Organizational Structure; Leadership
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA

Paul W. Beamish, Anthony Goerzen

Product Number: 9A98M034
Publication Date: 10/30/1998
Revision Date: 9/19/2017
Length: 11 pages

A year had elapsed since Mabuchi Motor Co., Ltd. of Japan, the world's most successful producer of small electric motors, had implemented a new management training program at one of its foreign operations in China. The program had two objectives. First, it was intended to enable the corporation to maintain its strategy of cost minimization by making it possible to reduce Japanese expatriate levels by improving the management skills of local managers in foreign subsidiaries. Second, by overcoming the shortage of qualified Japanese managers, the program would also allow the continued aggressive expansion of production that had become a cornerstone of corporate strategy. The teaching purpose is to illustrate the difficulties associated with transferring a management style and corporate culture into a different national culture.

Teaching Note: 8A98M34 (11 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: China; Organizational Change; Corporate Culture; Management Training; Subsidiaries
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA

Paul W. Beamish, Lambros Karavis

Product Number: 9B02M041
Publication Date: 11/29/2002
Revision Date: 12/3/2009
Length: 10 pages

Selkirk Group is a family-owned brick manufacturer which has built an export business to Japan and other Asian markets from zero to 10% of its volume in seven years. The managing director of the company raises the question of whether it is time to change their regional export strategy and organizational structure in light of the Asian economic crisis and the reasons for their competitive success in both Australia and Asia.

Teaching Note: 8A99M03 (9 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: International Business; Exports; Organizational Structure; International Marketing
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA

Chapter 11:
Corporate Governance: Instilling Long-Term Value

Lawrence G. Tapp, Trevor Hunter

Product Number: 9B02M045
Publication Date: 1/10/2003
Revision Date: 12/3/2009
Length: 11 pages

CCL Industries Inc. is one of the top packagers of consumer products in the world. Over its 50-year history the company had grown from a small room to a multinational firm employing 7,500 people with over $1.6 billon in sales. CCL faces an uncertain environment that had already led to a major strategic reorientation when its plan to sell its largest division was cancelled. A global economic slowdown and lower consumer confidence coupled with extensive international operations, significantly increased the risk to CCL's sales and already slim profits. In the past, the company prospered through product diversification gained through acquisition. The economic slowdown and increased uncertainty meant that this strategy may not be appropriate in the future. The chief executive officer recognizes the time, attention, advice, composition and operations of the board of directors would likely have to be altered to reflect this new reality.

Teaching Note: 8B02M45 (7 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: Board of Directors; Corporate Governance
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA

Lawrence G. Tapp, Gail Robertson

Product Number: 9B00M042
Publication Date: 6/20/2001
Revision Date: 1/11/2010
Length: 8 pages

Calgas is one of Canada's top 25 oil and gas producers, with multinational principal shareholders and a multinational board of directors. A board member has been shopping the company without the board's knowledge or approval, and has been unsuccessful. His actions have caused employee anger and a loss of industry credibility. The board of directors must decide how to deal with the board member and determine a strategy for both damage control and moving forward.

Teaching Note: 8B00M42 (6 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: Corporate Governance; International Business; Board of Directors
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA

W. Glenn Rowe, Tami Hynes

Product Number: 9B01M031
Publication Date: 8/9/2001
Revision Date: 12/21/2009
Length: 22 pages

Newfoundland-based Fishery Products International (FPI) is one of the largest seafood companies in North America. FPI has experienced its best performance in a decade and has recently survived a hostile takeover bid by three competitors who acted in concert. The chief executive officer (CEO) has just returned from New Zealand where he was visiting a major competitor to see if there was the possibility of a strategic alliance. The CEO knew he had to do something to prevent another hostile takeover and to continue to grow shareholder value while still maintaining the social conscience of FPI. Some of the issues facing FPI were: performance, strategic leadership and corporate governance, and implementing an integrated product differentiation/cost leadership strategy.

Teaching Note: 8B01M31 (12 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: Government and Business; Strategy Implementation; Corporate Governance; Return on Investment
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA