Trying to Create a Stir: Opening a Coffee Shop in Korea
(6 pages of text)
A critical question for entrepreneurs starting a business, particularly in a foreign country, is choosing whether or not franchising is the appropriate mode of entry. Franchising offers the entrepreneur instant brand recognition, established business processes and supply chains, regulatory and tax guidance, and a ready supply of assistance in the early months. However, it deprives the entrepreneur of what many of them crave - the ability to create and grow a business from one’s imagination. The two entrepreneurs in this case had regular salaries, but wanted to try opening a coffee shop - or a chain of coffee shops - in South Korea, which already had many brands with multiple outlets.
This case is appropriate for use in entrepreneurship, management strategy, or international marketing and business courses to introduce mode of entry selection and product/service differentiation. It provides a practical example for students to understand how a mode of entry decision impacts competitiveness in a mature market segment in a mature geographic market. The case can help achieve these objectives as it:
- Encourages students to explore the unique challenges that entrepreneurs face in market selection, mode of entry, product/service offering, and brand differentiation strategies.
- Demonstrates that these critical decisions - market selection, mode of entry, differentiation, etc. - are not linear decisions to be made one after another, but rather pieces of an integrated strategy that have an impact on each other.
- Allows students to be creative in looking for ways to differentiate a product or service that is a late entrant into a mature market.
Accommodation & Food Services
South Korea, Small, 2010
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