Cathay Pacific: Navigating Digital Disruption
(9 pages of text)
Case (Pub Mat)
In 2017, Cathay Pacific Airways Limited (Cathay Pacific) began its largest transformation program in 20 years in response to business hardships the airline had been experiencing since 2016. The program used digital enablement and insight orientation to realign the company’s newly defined business focuses and to establish supporting pillars for further development. Information technology (IT) not only played a lead role in this corporate transformation, but it also became increasingly vital to Cathay Pacific’s future growth. In 2018, this transformation seemed successful, but important questions remained regarding the development of Cathay Pacific’s IT strategy over the previous decade, the company’s focus for its IT investments, and the factors that led the company into hardship. As it moved forward, how far could Cathay Pacific go with its digital transformation? How could IT influence the company’s future business strategy: could it help Cathay Pacific avoid further turbulence?
This case, written as a sequel to McFarlan, Young, and Lo’s case Cathay Pacific (available from Ivey Publishing, product no. 307009), explores the IT strategies and investments made by Cathay Pacific over a 10-year period. The case is suitable for an undergraduate- or graduate-level course on IT investment, IT outsourcing, or outsourcing strategies. After working through the case and assignment questions, students will be able to do the following:
- Describe the different business environments and major challenges Cathay Pacific faced over a 10-year period.
- Examine the relationships among business environment, business strategy, and IT strategic investments.
- Summarize the modes of IT outsourcing in modern business in the context of Cathay Pacific.
Transportation and Warehousing
China; Hong Kong, Large, 2018
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