Ivey Publishing

Business Essentials

Ebert, Griffin, Starke, Dracopoulos,9 (United States, Pearson, 2013)
Prepared By Tianjiao Xu,
Chapter and Title Chapter Matches: Case Information
Chapter 1:
The U.S. Business Environment

THE MONOPOLISTIC POWER OF THE NCAA
Carl Anderson, Francine Schlosser

Product Number: 9B14M017
Publication Date: 4/21/2014
Revision Date: 4/4/2014
Length: 10 pages

This case examines the relationship between the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) and its member institutions, with a primary focus on how power evolves and is administered at an organizational level. Through a close look at the history of the NCAA, the case highlights the unique tale of the organization’s rise to power and its ability to regulate all collegiate athletics within the United States. In light of the increasing commercialization of collegiate athletics, the perceived cartel-like nature of the NCAA has brought into question the mission and core values of the non-profit organization and whether the NCAA truly has the best interests of its member institutions in mind. Facing antitrust lawsuits, scandals, the looming threat of the formation of super-conferences and a myriad of other issues, the NCAA must choose its path forward very carefully.

Teaching Note: 8B14M017 (12 pages)
Industry: Arts, Entertainment, Sports and Recreation
Issues: Power; organizational identity; stakeholder theory; sports management; United States
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



HUAWEI ENTERS THE UNITED STATES
Tim Simpson, Ilan Alon

Product Number: 9B13N013
Publication Date: 7/24/2013
Revision Date: 10/28/2015
Length: 9 pages

Huawei has attempted to enter and acquire assets in the United States, but there are issues involved in understanding foreign market risk and the political challenges of internationalization. The Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) twice denied Huawei’s acquisition of a U.S. computer company. Huawei had to transform its company image and reputation, changing from a Chinese company with Chinese characteristics into a global corporation equivalent to Cisco Systems or Ericsson. This case encourages students to address the issues of internationalization in an incompletely open global market, the government intervention in markets and the broader issues that arise with the geo-political and geo-economic shifts of 21st century.

Teaching Note: 8B13N013 (6 pages)
Industry: Information, Media & Telecommunications
Issues: Political risk; international expansion; foreign direct investment; business strategy; United States
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



DOMINION RESOURCES, INC. (A)
Fariss-Terry Mousa, Katherine Holley

Product Number: 9B13M008
Publication Date: 3/12/2013
Revision Date: 2/27/2013
Length: 11 pages

Dominion Resources is an industry giant, generating and distributing electricity throughout much of the northeastern United States. The company has continuously explored and expanded into new markets. Its portfolio includes fossil-fueled electricity, nuclear power, renewable energies, gas exploration and more. This standalone A case considers a recent question of the proper mix between regulated and unregulated markets and the impact of such a decision on the firm’s future success. The standalone B case, Dominion Resources, Inc. (B) 9B13M009, examines how the disaster at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant in Japan affects Dominion’s strategic planning given the change in public perception of nuclear power following the incident.

Teaching Note: 8B13M008 (9 pages)
Industry: Utilities
Issues: Energy; strategic decision-making; regulated markets; nuclear plants; United States
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA


Chapter 2:
Business Ethics and Social Responsibility

CLOVER FOOD LAB: SUSTAINABILITY AS COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGE
Michael Crooke, Mark Chun, Amanda Kastelic

Product Number: 9B16M046
Publication Date: 3/28/2016
Revision Date: 3/24/2016
Length: 15 pages

By July 2012, the founder of Clover Food Lab (Clover) had created a profitable business that served locally sourced, organic, vegetarian fast food. Over the course of four years, Clover had grown from one food truck parked on the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) campus in Cambridge to five food trucks and two brick-and-mortar restaurants in the metropolitan Boston area. With loyal customers advocating for the brand, the CEO knew that his company was well positioned for continued growth. He dreamed of turning Clover into a global fast-food provider, capturing enough market share to compete directly with international fast-food chains like McDonald’s. In 2014, he considered expanding his company into a new market and wondered whether Clover’s vision and operations could be duplicated.

Teaching Note: 8B16M046 (11 pages)
Industry: Accommodation & Food Services
Issues: Environmental engagement, social engagement, CSR, corporate social responsibility, SEER Lens, Porter's five forces, competitive advantage, brand, value chain, buyer life cycle
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



APPLE AND ITS SUPPLIERS: CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY
Sun Hye Lee, Michael J. Mol, Kamel Mellahi

Product Number: 9B16M040
Publication Date: 3/22/2016
Revision Date: 3/4/2016
Length: 10 pages

AWARD WINNING CASE - STRATEGY AND GENERAL MANAGEMENT CATEGORY - THE CASE CENTRE AWARDS AND COMPETITIONS 2019. In a 2014 documentary, the multinational technology company Apple Inc. was implicated in alleged human rights violations at Pegatron, a large Chinese supplier that assembled Apple's iPhones. The allegations followed similar, well-publicized violations in 2009 at another China-based Apple supplier. Although Apple had promised to improve its practices, doing so had clearly proven to be a difficult task. How should Apple respond to these new allegations? Should it evade the accusations and instead point to its existing efforts? Could it do more to protect workers? Should it rethink its offshoring and outsourcing strategy? Is it fair to blame Apple for the activities of its suppliers? Where does the blame fall?

Teaching Note: 8B16M040 (12 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: Customer service, relations, supply chain, offshoring, CSR, worker safety, ethical business operations, regulations, public image, worker rights, Foxconn, original design manufacturer, ODM, fair labour, responsibility
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



JOE FRESH: ETHICAL SOURCING
Jaana Woiceshyn, Norm Althouse, Nigel Goodwin

Product Number: 9B16M023
Publication Date: 2/16/2016
Revision Date: 2/3/2016
Length: 11 pages

After more than 1,100 people lost their lives in the 2013 collapse of the Rana Plaza garment factory building in Bangladesh, executives of Joe Fresh, a Canadian fashion and lifestyle brand, had to respond. Along with numerous other Western retailers, Joe Fresh had sourced much of its merchandise from the Rana Plaza factory. The disaster evoked an emotional public reaction, ranging from sympathy to outrage. The clothing industry had become a critical part of Bangladesh’s economy, and this was not an isolated incident. How would the Rana Plaza incident affect the public perception of Joe Fresh, and what could the company do to improve that perception? More fundamentally, how could Joe Fresh balance its competitive position, obligations to shareholders, and customer demands with ethical sourcing?

Teaching Note: 8B16M023 (12 pages)
Industry: Retail Trade
Issues: Textiles, garment manufacturing, sweatshops, outsourcing, worker safety, worker health, public relations, brand perception, human rights, Loblaws, labour laws, health and safety
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA


Chapter 3:
Entrepreneurship, New Ventures, and Business Ownership

ELE.ME: THE ENTREPRENEUR'S GROWTH DILEMMA
Simon Parker, Xu Zhao, David Sang

Product Number: 9B16M012
Publication Date: 3/16/2016
Revision Date: 3/16/2016
Length: 8 pages

In June 2014, the co-founder and chief executive officer of the fast-growing, Shanghai-based online food ordering and delivery service ele.me, was wrestling with multiple growth-related questions. He had lofty ambitions for his venture but was facing the first major competitive threat in the form of a diversifying entrant. In the face of this threat, and with his inexperience as a business manager, he was unsure about how quickly to try to scale up the business, and how exactly he should implement his growth plan for ele.me. The company’s success had attracted considerable venture capital financing. Should the company seek growth by sending head office managers to new regional offices, by hiring local regional managers and staff, or by franchising the brand in target cities?

Teaching Note: 8B16M012 (6 pages)
Industry: Accommodation & Food Services
Issues: Mobile Internet, start-up, venture capital
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



MARKETING AT NYASSA
Neeraj Pandey, Gaganpreet Singh, Sandeep Puri

Product Number: 9B16A004
Publication Date: 2/16/2016
Revision Date: 2/12/2016
Length: 11 pages

In March 2015, the founder and chief executive officer of Nyassa Retail Private Limited — a manufacturer of premium natural and luxury bath and body products based in Mumbai — was contemplating how to ensure the company’s future growth. Product acceptance had been phenomenal, allowing the company to build up a reasonable market share, with healthy profit margins. Although Nyassa had experimented with franchising as a quick way to gain a foothold in and cater to new target markets, it had quickly realized that the odds of losing control over the process due to lack of infrastructure were too high and might result in dissatisfaction and poor service. Thus, it had focused on developing its chain of exclusive retail stores, kiosks, and “shops in shops.” As competition from both Indian and international companies increased, the company was exploring online marketing options, return policy, packaging changes, and cross-selling for its new ultra-premium products. Should it penetrate deeper in India, skim the markets that showed high potential, launch the brand in overseas markets, or accept venture capital funding to achieve its goals?

Teaching Note: 8B16A004 (11 pages)
Industry: Retail Trade
Issues: Pricing, pricing strategy, value creation, bath and body products, product development, segmentation, targeting, positioning, marketing mix
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



RIVEST FARMS: FARMING APPROACHES AND THE FOUR PS
Kent Walker, Ryan Donally

Product Number: 9B16M011
Publication Date: 1/29/2016
Revision Date: 1/29/2016
Length: 13 pages

Having previously raised pigs on his farm with unsuccessful results, a Canadian farmer has always dreamed of reintroducing pigs to his cash crop farm. The decision is particularly difficult, as he must consider not only the financial viability of his options, but also the environmental costs, benefits, and the welfare of the animals and workers — collectively referred to as the Four Ps (profits, planet, people, and pigs). Although the market for organic meat remains comparatively limited, it is a growing segment, and one that the farmer wants to tap into to maximize a first-mover advantage. However, the transition poses many risks as well. Will he be able to achieve his dream of re-introducing pigs to his family farm? Or will the attempt to transition to organic pork bury his currently profitable cash crop business?

Teaching Note: 8B16M011 (13 pages)
Industry: Agriculture, Forestry, Fishing and Hunting
Issues: Sustainability, animal welfare, livestock, environment, organic
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA


Chapter 4:
The Global Context of Business

CAMERON AUTO PARTS: EARLY INTERNATIONALIZATION
Paul W. Beamish, Harold Crookell

Product Number: 9B16M043
Publication Date: 3/24/2016
Revision Date: 1/5/2017
Length: 9 pages

This case is about a small American auto parts producer trying to diversify its way out of dependence on the major automakers in 2013. 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 full class sequel to this case is available, titled Cameron Auto Parts: Joint Ventures, Licensing or Exporting, 9B16M044.

Teaching Note: 8B16M043 (7 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: Corporate strategy, exporting, licensing, joint venture
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



YG ENTERTAINMENT: INSIDE THE KOREAN POP MUSIC FACTORY (A)
Bryan Hong, Damian Lu

Product Number: 9B16M009
Publication Date: 2/4/2016
Revision Date: 3/24/2016
Length: 18 pages

YG Entertainment (YG) is the second largest entertainment company in the South Korean pop music (K-pop) industry, and has experienced rapid growth while maintaining a profit margin of over two times the average profitability of top U.S. record labels. The case examines how YG and other K-pop entertainment companies have developed a unique system to produce a competitive advantage in an industry that typically experiences high failure rates and substantial uncertainty regarding the success of artists. The, founder and chairman of YG, must decide the company's next steps for growth, and whether Japan, China, or the United States will be the most promising for YG's future success. The song Gangnam Style was created by YG artist PSY. Also see case supplement 9B16M010.

Teaching Note: 8B16M009 (9 pages)
Industry: Arts, Entertainment, Sports and Recreation
Issues: Entertainment, international expansion, growth, music
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN?: AN EXERCISE TO ASSESS YOUR EXPOSURE TO THE REST OF THE WORLD’S PEOPLES
Paul W. Beamish

Product Number: 9B15M090
Publication Date: 9/14/2015
Revision Date: 9/14/2015
Length: 11 pages

This exercise assesses one’s exposure to the rest of the world’s peoples. A series of worksheets require the respondents to check off the number and names of countries they have visited and the corresponding percentage of world population which each country represents. By summing a group’s collective exposure to the world’s people, the result will inevitably be the recognition that together they have seen much, even if individually some have seen little. The teaching note provides assignments and discussion questions which look at: why there is such a high variability in individual profiles; the implications of each profile for one’s business career; and, what it would take for the respondent to change his/her profile.

For marketers, it underscores the need to gather greater base knowledge about opportunities abroad.


Teaching Note: 8B15M090 (6 pages)
Issues: Career development; intercultural relations; team building; internationalization
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA


Chapter 5:
Business Management

GUELPH GENERAL HOSPITAL
Michael J. Rouse, Justin Cottrell, Abhinay Sathya, Austin Allison, Daniel Korsunsky, Scott Anders McGillis, Moneca Nicols

Product Number: 9B16M038
Publication Date: 3/29/2016
Revision Date: 3/29/2016
Length: 8 pages

In November 2010, the senior director of Inpatient Services at Guelph General Hospital, which was situated in a small city in Southwestern Ontario, Canada, was facing questions about the implementation of the Process Improvement Program, part of a province-wide pilot project. Beginning in October 2009, the program had been tested at the hospital to deal with a deteriorating organizational culture and poor performance reviews. Guelph General Hospital was plagued with inefficiencies: patients leaving untreated, low staff morale, a defensive (blame) culture, and a lack of interdepartmental collaboration. The new program was based on the “lean” methodology developed by Japanese automotive manufacturers, but its use in the hospital had raised questions about whether it was suitable in a healthcare setting. Some employees did not support it and were threatening to leave. Should the hospital continue to implement the lean strategy? How should it move forward?

Teaching Note: 8B16M038 (7 pages)
Industry: Health Care Services
Issues: Hospital, implementation, lean, process improvement, change
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



UBER: LEADING THE SHARING ECONOMY
Sayan Chatterjee, Kayleigh Fitch

Product Number: 9B16M024
Publication Date: 2/26/2016
Revision Date: 3/22/2016
Length: 9 pages

Uber was a technology company that relied on its mobile app and word-of-mouth advertising to reach customers interested in its transportation services. It prided itself on being an on-time, stylish, unique, and modern transportation option. However, in 2014, Uber faced many challenges and questions as an industry incumbent. Could its business model succeed despite being heavily reliant on buyers’ willingness to pay a substantial premium in some situations? Could the model be sustained and expanded into cities worldwide? How could the regulations protecting the taxi industry be overcome in so many diverse markets? Finally, how could Uber position its business model in a way that would create entry barriers to keep rivals out of the market?

Teaching Note: 8B16M024 (15 pages)
Industry: Transportation and Warehousing
Issues: Sharing economy, network model, rapid expansion, regulation, taxi, cab, hackney carriage, competition, rideshare, apps, UberCab, regulatory issues, metered, surge pricing, point-to-point transportation, lightweight infrastructure, value proposition, global strategy, service diversity
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA


Chapter 6:
Organizing the Business

JOYUS - BUILDING AN ORGANIZATIONAL STRUCTURE FOR SCALE
Matthew Wong, Darren Meister

Product Number: 9B16M003
Publication Date: 1/13/2016
Revision Date: 1/28/2016
Length: 6 pages

Joyus is a growing online video shopping marketplace specializing in women’s health, beauty and fashion products. After three years of operations and having recently secured substantial funding, the company is poised for future growth. The co-founder and chief executive officer faces the difficult challenge of building the right management team and the appropriate organizational structure to support the company’s desired growth. She needs to structure the organization from a human resources perspective, by evaluating the organizational needs and determining the right mix of skills, abilities and personalities required for success.

Teaching Note: 8B16M003 (14 pages)
Industry: Information, Media & Telecommunications
Issues: Growth, leadership, organizational culture
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



MILITARY ARSENAL SYSTEMS: PREPARING TO LEAD A TEAM (A)
Lyn Purdy, Ken Mark

Product Number: 9B14M057
Publication Date: 11/27/2014
Revision Date: 11/24/2014
Length: 13 pages

In March 2010, a newly promoted engineering area manager at Military Arsenal Systems, a Vancouver-based defence contractor, has just become team leader for a key program at the firm. His biggest challenge is how to lead his team, given that he is dealing with a range of personalities and the fact that he was a peer before he became their leader. How can he prove himself to be an effective leader not only to his team but to senior management? Can he rally the team quickly enough to meet the stringent deadlines for supplying the sophisticated armoured vehicles contracted by the U.S. Army for its mission in Afghanistan? See supplement 9B14M058.

Teaching Note: 8B14M057 (8 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: Teamwork; operations; leadership; decision-making; culture; project management; Canada
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA


Chapter 7:
Operations Management and Quality

KOREAN AIR: THE NUT RAGE INCIDENT
Thompson S.H. Teo, Mei Jie Zhao

Product Number: 9B15D017
Publication Date: 11/30/2015
Revision Date: 11/27/2015
Length: 10 pages

In December 2014, after receiving poor service on a flight, a senior vice president at Korean Air lashed out at the flight attendants and delayed the flight’s departure until the chief attendant was returned to the gate. Following a tepid apology from her father, Korean Air’s chief executive officer, her actions drew a public backlash because they exposed the sense of entitlement prevalent among rich family conglomerates in South Korea. How should she have reacted in the face of the service failure? Why had she become the target of a public backlash? What could Korean Air do to mitigate the negative effects of this incident?

Teaching Note: 8B15D017 (8 pages)
Industry: Transportation and Warehousing
Issues: Customer service, leadership, chaebols, dynasty, service gap, public relations
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



AMERICAN UNIVERSITY OF BEIRUT MEDICAL CENTER: PATIENT TRANSPORT
Lina Daouk-Oyry, Dania Baba, Line Reda, Neil Yorke-Smith

Product Number: 9B15D012
Publication Date: 9/11/2015
Revision Date: 11/29/2016
Length: 11 pages

The patient affairs coordinator is concerned about the rising number of complaints regarding the level of services offered by the transportation teams in the American University of Beirut Medical Center (AUBMC). The center's management team is determined to create an exemplary patient transportation service at AUBMC and consequently launches an investigation supported by a full-scale study to determine better ways of re-engineering these processes. The coordinator must consider the factors that contribute to patient and staff complaints as well as the types of data and tests required to provide evidence-based solutions for patient transportation in the hospital.

Teaching Note: 8B15D012 (12 pages)
Industry: Health Care Services
Issues: Determining KPIs, process redesign, evidence-based decision making
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA


Chapter 8:
Employee Behavior and Motivation

MALAYSIA’S HERBALINE FACIAL SPA: A HUMAN RESOURCE STRATEGY FOR GROWING STARTUP


Product Number: AB15001
Publication Date: 4/6/2015
Length: 14 pages

The case study discusses the human resource strategy of a fast-growing company in the highly competitive beauty spa industry in Malaysia. It examines how the founders' personal values and philosophies were expressed in the human resource policies and practices and the influence of these on the company's customer service delivery and service culture.

HerbaLine's focus on excellent customer service enabled the founders, Mr Low Chee-Kwong and Ms Liu Kim-Hwa, to position the beauty spa operator as a viable alternative to expensive, high–end international beauty chains and low–cost, no–frills, individually–operated beauty salons. The success of their service strategy was reflected in their growth from one outlet in 2000 to 55 outlets in 2014.

With a vision to expand HerbaLine beauty spa to every major town in Malaysia, the founders embarked on a new profit–sharing scheme for high performing employees to reward performance and to sustain and grow the high levels of employee commitment and excellent service delivery that underpinned the company's growth. Could this be the motor that would enable the company to double its number of outlets to 100 by 2024?


Teaching Note: AB15001T (7 pages)
Industry: Retail Trade
Issues: service strategy; organizational culture; motivation
Setting: 2000-2015
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



MOTIVATED REASONING, LEADERSHIP AND TEAM PERFORMANCE
Syed Salman Ahmad, Santosh Kumar, Sheetanshu Mishra

Product Number: 9B13C010
Publication Date: 5/7/2013
Revision Date: 5/6/2013
Length: 7 pages

This case revolves around the experiences of an MBA student at an Indian business school. The student is dynamic, capable and intent on high achievement, but his pursuit of recognition eventually hampers his and his team’s learning and performance. The case is based on an event that happens within a course on organizational behaviour where the student makes a major mistake in his analysis of a case due to his need to demonstrate his competence and validate himself. This hurts his and his team’s performance on an assigned task. After the event, the student and his team members reflect on the events that led to this mistake. They also take the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) and the Fundamental Interpersonal Relations Orientation - Behavior (FIRO-B) assessments to determine their personality preferences and interpersonal needs that might have influenced the team’s functioning.

Teaching Note: 8B13C010 (26 pages)
Industry: Educational Services
Issues: Personality motivation; perception decision-making; group dynamics leadership; learning performance; India
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA


Chapter 9:
Leadership and Decision Making

SINGAPORE MASS RAPID TRANSIT: GOING OFF TRACK
Vivien K. G. Lim, Nikodemus Jaya

Product Number: 9B15C006
Publication Date: 2/19/2015
Revision Date: 2/12/2015
Length: 12 pages

In January 2012, Singapore Mass Rapid Transit (SMRT) Corporation’s chief executive officer resigned after two major breakdowns on the North-South Line in December 2011. SMRT was a public transport operator in Singapore, with a transportation network that comprised buses, trains and taxis. The two breakdowns were arguably the largest public transportation incidents in Singapore’s history, prompting public outrage and heavy criticism of the CEO’s qualifications and personal style. However, it was uncertain whether she, as CEO, bore primary responsibility for the train breakdowns. To what extent did her gender and unconventional style affect the public’s perception of her effectiveness as a leader? How much did the media influence the public’s perception? Could the train breakdowns have been averted if a CEO with an engineering background or industry-specific experience had been in charge?

Teaching Note: 8B15C006 (7 pages)
Industry: Other Services
Issues: Gender; power; women; crisis; Singapore
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



FERIO PUGLIESE: LEADING WESTJET'S NEW CARRIER ENCORE
Gerard Seijts, Jean-Louis Schaan, Robert Way

Product Number: 9B15C008
Publication Date: 2/12/2015
Revision Date: 5/22/2015
Length: 13 pages

In early 2014, Ferio Pugliese looked back on his turbulent first year as president of WestJet Airlines Ltd.’s new regional air service Encore. Encore represented the company’s most significant organizational change in its 18 years of dramatic growth. Expanding the airline’s fleet to include smaller, short-haul aircraft that could service smaller destinations throughout Western Canada had not been without growing pains. For example, a number of employees reportedly felt they were losing their sense of belonging in the company that prided itself on employee satisfaction. Pugliese wondered how he should proceed in putting Encore on a successful path.

Teaching Note: 8B15C008 (14 pages)
Industry: Transportation and Warehousing
Issues: Organizational culture; strategy; collaboration; leadership; Canada
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA


Chapter 10:
Human Resource Management and Labour Relations

COLLECTIVE BARGAINING AND NEGOTIATION AT THE UNIVERSITY OF REGINA: GENERAL OVERVIEW AND PRIVATE INFORMATION - ADMINISTRATION
Ann C. Frost, Chris Street, Andrew Stevens

Product Number: 9B15C005A
Publication Date: 3/17/2015
Revision Date: 3/25/2015
Length: 9 pages

The University of Regina faculty association and the University of Regina administration are entering into contract negotiations just six months after settling their previous contract through mediation. Although the two parties have both conflicting and compatible interests regarding the ultimate collective agreement outcomes, their strained relationship complicates the bargaining process. Use with 9B15C005B.

Teaching Note: 8B15C005 (9 pages)
Industry: Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services
Issues: Negotiations; collective bargaining; strategy formulation; Canada
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



HUMAN RESOURCES PRACTICES AND THE LABOUR MARKET IN JAPAN
Derek Lehmberg

Product Number: 9B13C023
Publication Date: 8/15/2013
Revision Date: 8/9/2013
Length: 16 pages

Human resource (HR) management practices in Japan are significantly different from those in Europe and North America. A knowledge of the traditional Japanese HR system, including practices relating to recruiting and compensation, unions and the labour market, is crucial for foreign companies operating in Japan as well as those seeking to do business with Japanese firms. While Japan’s distinct HR system was once considered a source of competitive advantage, changing economies and labour markets have called its current effectiveness into question. The traditional system primarily provided stable long-term employment for full-time employees; however, for a variety of reasons, non-regular forms of employment, including part-time and short-term positions, are on the rise. HR managers in Japan must consider relevant societal and economic changes and develop more effective HR systems in response.

Issues: Human resource management; labour markets; Japan
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA


Chapter 11:
Marketing Processes and Consumer Behavior

THE ASYLUM: MOCKING THEIR WAY THROUGH HOLLYWOOD
Bryan Hong, Stacey Clark, Charlotte Zhen

Product Number: 9B15M123
Publication Date: 12/18/2015
Revision Date: 12/18/2015
Length: 10 pages

The co-founder and chief executive officer of The Asylum, a movie production company headquartered in Burbank, California, must decide whether the company needs to explore other avenues for growth or change its current business model to boost profitability. The company has developed a unique imitation strategy to reduce the uncertainty of financial success in filmmaking – its “mockbuster” business model is to produce B-rated movies that use plotlines similar to that of major Hollywood films already in production and release them at the same time as or just before the comparable Hollywood film. It can thus take advantage of the large marketing and promotion campaigns that large film production studios employ to promote their films while producing a substantially cheaper (but somewhat similar) film. To date, all of these mockbusters have been profitable, but changes to property rights regulations and increased litigation cases may come to affect the bottom line. There are three options going forward: maintaining the status quo, focusing even more on producing mockbusters or shifting toward completely original film production. What should the company do to ensure future success?

Teaching Note: 8B15M123 (7 pages)
Industry: Arts, Entertainment, Sports and Recreation
Issues: Movies, entertainment, imitation, uncertainty
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



ABERCROMBIE & FITCH: IS IT UNETHICAL TO BE EXCLUSIVE?
Seung Hwan (Mark) Lee, June Cotte, Danae Blanchard

Product Number: 9B14A009
Publication Date: 4/9/2014
Revision Date: 4/9/2014
Length: 5 pages

The CEO of clothing manufacturer and retailer Abercrombie and Fitch defends his decision that the company will not offer plus sizes for women, although extra large sizes are available for men, because average- to large-sized female consumers do not fit the company’s target market. This insistence on a standard of female beauty as young, svelte and tall has enraged consumers who have criticized the company, and the CEO in particular, in both the traditional and social media for exacerbating problems of body image and gender stereotypes, especially among teens. Increasing sizes, however, presents not only logistical and manufacturing challenges but may lead to charges that the company is encouraging obesity and unhealthy lifestyles as happened when a competitor, H&M, introduced large-size models and mannequins in its stores. Abercrombie and Fitch’s popularity with its target teen market depends on its promulgation of exclusivity, which in turn depends on its vision of what is “cool.” Yet, in the face of mounting criticism and declining sales, does sticking to the segmentation strategy make sense?

Teaching Note: 8B14A009 (3 pages)
Industry: Retail Trade
Issues: Marketing ethics; social media; targeting/segmentation; United States
Difficulty: 3 - Undergraduate


Chapter 12:
Pricing, Distributing, and Promoting Products

DOVE REAL BEAUTY SKETCHES CAMPAIGN
Matthew Thomson, Emily Goldberg, Ben Gottlieb, Samantha Landy, Samuel Solomon, Lindsay Sittler

Product Number: 9B14A012
Publication Date: 5/14/2014
Revision Date: 5/14/2014
Length: 6 pages

This case discusses the future of the Dove brand and what type of advertising it should use moving forward. The brand has previously launched the Dove Real Beauty Campaign, which focuses on widening the definition of beauty. Students are given the history of the campaign and are asked to assess various options for the Dove brand.

Teaching Note: 8B14A012 (7 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: Advertising; Canada
Difficulty: 3 - Undergraduate



MACY'S DEPARTMENT STORE REPOSITIONING
Homer H. Johnson

Product Number: 9B11M112
Publication Date: 1/6/2012
Length: 8 pages

From 2005-2006, Federated Department Stores converted some 15 regional department store chains into a single national brand, Macy’s, with 810 stores across the United States. In addition, the company repositioned the consolidated Macy’s in the overall retail landscape in an attempt to differentiate the new company from its competitors. These maneuvers were undertaken to counter decreasing sales and profits in the traditional department store industry. Some retail analysts suggested that the consolidation of Macy’s, while interesting, was destined to fail because the traditional department store was an obsolete entity; however, other analysts suggested that Macy’s strategy might hold the key to success in a declining industry. In 2008, the U.S. economy entered a recession, and by 2011 it remained far from booming. Did Macy’s need to change parts of its strategy to remain competitive? What would need to change?

Teaching Note: 8B11M112 (7 pages)
Industry: Retail Trade
Issues: Strategic Repositioning; Strategy; Strategic Decision-making; Department Stores; United States
Difficulty: 3 - Undergraduate


Chapter 13:
Information Technology for Business

DISRUPTING WALL STREET: HIGH FREQUENCY TRADING
Derrick Neufeld, Brad Evans

Product Number: 9B14E021
Publication Date: 10/30/2014
Revision Date: 10/29/2014
Length: 11 pages

Michael Lewis’s book Flash Boys, published in 2014, revealed to the public numerous controversial Wall Street trading practices made possible by advances in technology as well as regulatory changes that were (ironically) intended to improve pricing fairness in the financial markets. Lewis’s story focused on the man who blew the whistle: Brad Katsuyama, a Canadian banker who ran the New York trading desk for the Royal Bank of Canada. In 2010, he had noticed some odd system responses to his trading requests and began to ask questions. The answers he discovered, and publicized, about high frequency trading set off a firestorm regarding the moral integrity of the financial markets. Very few people understood what was happening, and fewer still comprehended the central role played by information technology.

Questions remain: How does information technology influence our concept of wealth? Why do “flash crashes” occur? Are the markets rigged? Will the next disruption to the financial markets involve technology?


Teaching Note: 8B14E021 (10 pages)
Industry: Finance and Insurance
Issues: Information technology; stock exchange; ethical issues; United States
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



CISCO AND CLOUD-BASED EDUCATION IN CHINA
Hugh Thomas, Robert P. Lee

Product Number: 9B14E028
Publication Date: 4/6/2015
Revision Date: 4/6/2015
Length: 13 pages

Cisco Systems, Inc., the dominant global supplier of the routers and switches that formed the backbone of the Internet, was considering entry into the cloud-based education market in China through the design and marketing of an in-classroom device, the Sunbird. The new vice-president and chief technology officer of Enterprise Networking Group, Cisco Greater China, had met with a Politburo member of the Communist Party of China and State Councilor with responsibilities including China’s science, technology and education policies. The vice-president had introduced Cisco’s global operations and the two women had discussed partnering, technology transfer, cross branding, joint product and service development, cooperation with Chinese companies, and the IT revolution and its effect on Chinese education. How could Cisco profitably join in the Chinese education IT revolution? Cisco had never entered the educational IT equipment space in any part of the world with its own dedicated product. Should it develop the Sunbird for the Chinese market?

A video is available for viewing online.


Teaching Note: 8B14E028 (11 pages)
Industry: Information, Media & Telecommunications
Issues: Management technology; cloud-based education; China
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA


Chapter 14:
The Role of Accountants and Accounting Information

SCREEN MICROTECH INC.
Vaughan S. Radcliffe, Deep Dhillon

Product Number: 9B16B005
Publication Date: 3/18/2016
Revision Date: 3/11/2016
Length: 10 pages

Screen Microtech Inc., a capacitive touch screen manufacturer, had seen significant growth over the past year: it had moved its manufacturing plant, expanded operations, built a larger client base and seen an unprecedented increase in sales. Its chief executive officer was preparing an initial public offering that could lead to a significant bonus and stock shares for himself and for the company’s chief financial officer. This could be enough to induce them to secure improved financial results through any means necessary. Certainly, it could bias their approach to accounting policy choices. Was the company’s accounting ethical? Did it feature earnings management or earnings manipulation? What was the difference between the two, if any? What was the effect of such accounting practices on the financial markets?

Teaching Note: 8B16B005 (10 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: Accruals, adjustments, revenue recognition
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



STOCK MANIPULATION BY CHINA'S PANGANG GROUP
Xin Chen, Michael R. King

Product Number: 9B16N007
Publication Date: 2/22/2016
Revision Date: 2/22/2016
Length: 17 pages

In April 2011, a university professor of accounting and finance was examining the financial statements of Pangang Group Steel Vanadium & Titanium Company (Pangang), a leading Chinese steel manufacturer listed on the Shenzhen Stock Exchange. Pangang had a dramatic turnaround in its reported net income in 2010 with its share price rising over 60 per cent in a six-month period. The professor suspected that the controlling shareholder of Pangang — Anshan Iron and Steel Group Corporation (Ansteel) — had been manipulating Pangang’s earnings to artificially inflate the stock price. The timing coincided with the expiry of put options awarded by Ansteel to minority shareholders as part of a restructuring. Was Pangang manipulating its earnings to influence stock prices? Was there sufficient evidence to expose the fraudulent scheme to the public or report the case to the Chinese securities regulators?

Teaching Note: 8B16N007 (15 pages)
Industry: Wholesale Trade
Issues: Equity, fraud, business ethics, auditing, valuation, restructuring, China
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



ABU DHABI NATIONAL HOTELS: WHAT WENT WRONG?
Anupam Mehta

Product Number: 9B14B016
Publication Date: 2/27/2015
Revision Date: 2/27/2015
Length: 12 pages

In 2012, Abu Dhabi National Hotels had been struggling and the performance of the company had significantly declined, especially that of its main hotel business. Net profit had been decreasing since 2009 and, with this shrinking profitability, shareholders were losing confidence in the company. The share price of the company had also deteriorated and was expected to decline further. With the drop in net profit year after year, investors were very concerned about the company’s performance and the direction of its future growth. The company had five business segments — hotels, retail services, catering, transportation and holding — and a deep analysis of the company’s performance areas and plan to improve these were needed.

Teaching Note: 8B14B016 (6 pages)
Industry: Accommodation & Food Services
Issues: Financial performance; ratio analysis; trend analysis; financial health; United Arab Emirates
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA


Chapter 15:
Money and Banking

BITCOIN
Jean-Philippe Vergne, Ken Mark

Product Number: 9B14M104
Publication Date: 8/6/2014
Revision Date: 12/3/2015
Length: 12 pages

Bitcoin is part of a new wave of financial technology – or fintech – innovations. These innovations are disrupting the technical, highly regulated financial industry that has been dominated by large banks and other financial institutions.After three years of trading in relative obscurity, the emergence of bitcoin in 2013 as a viable cryptocurrency is promising both to open up new possibilities to entrepreneurs and incumbent firms and to pose challenges to regulators such as the U.S. Federal Reserve. Rising in value from just $0.05 in mid-2010 to over $1,000 by November 2013, bitcoin is to some people the 21st century version of Tulipmania and to others a viable alternative to fiat currencies. Bitcoin’s popularity has prompted the development of competing cryptocurrencies, the establishment of a foundation to promote its interests and the emergence of legitimate and grey market entrepreneurs looking to capitalize on the currency itself and its features. Its position as a currency concerns regulators around the world, and hackers have already exploited security gaps in service providers such as Mt. Gox, a bitcoin exchange platform, for their own benefit. Looking at recent developments, what will the future of bitcoin be?

Teaching Note: 8B14M104 (22 pages)
Industry: Information, Media & Telecommunications
Issues: Cryptocurrencies; strategic choice; fiat currencies; business model development; payments industry; new venture creation; fintech
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



BANKINTER: GROWTH OPTIONS DURING THE SPANISH CRISIS
Eric Duca, Lidija Lovreta

Product Number: 9B15N024
Publication Date: 11/13/2015
Revision Date: 11/11/2015
Length: 18 pages

The president of Bankinter, a Spanish bank, decided that the time was right to expand. At the time, the Spanish economy was experiencing a severe downturn and the banking system was going through major reforms. He believed that growth could occur either organically or through acquisitions — as long as the target business complemented Bankinter’s present operations and preserved the company’s values and organizational culture. His goal was to choose one option, while determining the price that should be paid if an acquisition offer was made. In this case, the purchase would be funded entirely through the issue of additional shares. The offer price would have to be justified to existing shareholders, who would only agree if the acquisition created value for them. At the same time, the success of the merger depended on the offer being accepted, so the price had to be attractive to the target company’s shareholders.

Teaching Note: 8B15N024 (9 pages)
Industry: Finance and Insurance
Issues: Mergers, acquisitions, equity capital, banking, corporate restructuring, domestic, foreign, crisis
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA


Chapter 16:
Managing Finances

STANDARD CHARTERED BANK: VALUATION AND CAPITAL STRUCTURE
Ruth S.K. Tan, Zsuzsa R. Huszar, Weina Zhang

Product Number: 9B15N030
Publication Date: 12/8/2015
Revision Date: 12/7/2015
Length: 11 pages

Following a turbulent 2014 for Standard Chartered Bank, the bank’s largest shareholder, Temasek Holdings, began showing indications that it was seriously considering offloading at least a portion of its massive shareholdings in Standard Chartered Bank. This case seeks to provide a fair valuation of Standard Chartered Bank’s intrinsic value, as well as rationalize the most appropriate way for Standard Chartered Bank to raise funds to satisfy the higher capital requirements under Basel III regulatory rules. Assuming that Standard Chartered Bank decided to hold on to its significant bank investments and to raise funds to satisfy the higher capital requirements, what could be some possible financing alternatives? Would it help to attract more bank deposits, raise debt, or go for a seasoned offering? What would be the impact of these financing alternatives? Finally, what would be a suitable recommendation on how to raise the funds if one took the valuation results into consideration?

Teaching Note: 8B15N030 (13 pages)
Industry: Finance and Insurance
Issues: Relative valuation, discounted cash flow, banking
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA



DELISLE INDUSTRIES
Dan Thompson

Product Number: 9B15N014
Publication Date: 1/14/2016
Revision Date: 1/14/2016
Length: 7 pages

In 2011, the sole owner and chief executive officer of Delisle Industries received Delisle’s 2010 financial statements from the company’s auditors and compared the results with previous years. While she was very happy with Delisle’s rapid growth, she had a number of serious concerns about its future. In particular, she was concerned about operating problems that had arisen as a result of rapid expansion as well as Delisle’s dependence on one vendor, Eagle Wholesale Club, to distribute Delisle’s product. She also had concerns about the establishment of a new production facility, wondered what could be done about the company’s poor cash management and overreliance on debt financing, and was seeking opportunities to finance future growth.

Teaching Note: 8B15N014 (10 pages)
Industry: Manufacturing
Issues: Corporate finance, ratio analysis, financial statement analysis
Difficulty: 4 - Undergraduate/MBA