Extraordinary Journeys: An Acquisition Expedition
(8 pages of text)
In late 2015, the chief executive officer of Extraordinary Journeys, an African safari tour operator, faced a rare opportunity to buy a smaller competitor, Safari Specialists Inc. The chief executive officer worried that her firm's strong organic growth would slow, and she was interested in examining alternative growth strategies. The smaller company was offered at a reasonable price and had a remarkably similar organizational culture. On the other hand, it relied heavily on outside contractors, not employees, creating potentially difficult human resources challenges. Further, it was located in rural Georgia, far from the Extraordinary Journeys home office in downtown Manhattan. All things considered, the chief executive officer was wondering if she should buy her competitor.
This case could be taught as part of an undergraduate- or graduate-level course in strategy, corporate finance, or HR. This case was originally written for use as an integration exercise in a capstone MBA strategic management class. It is meant to tie together business strategy, HR strategy, and corporate finance. There is a good deal of information in the case, so professors in strategy, management, and finance can guide the discussion in a broad range of directions that are relevant for their specific courses. This case was written to fill a specific gap around teaching strategy holistically to students who struggle to integrate multiple business disciplines. After working through the case and assignment questions, students will be able to
- integrate strategy with critical corporate finance and human resources (HR) topics;
- use the theories of Porter, and Ghemawat and Rivkin to analyze the core competitive advantage of EJ in order to decide if a mergers-and-acquisitions (M&A) activity makes sense;
- understand the analysis of critical qualitative factors in a primarily quantitative M&A decision; and
- better understand the structure of the travel industry, especially within the luxury segment.
Arts, Entertainment, Sports and Recreation
United States, Small, 2015
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