Charles Chocolates (A)
(7 pages of text)
A new president has been hired to double or triple the size of Charles Chocolates, a high end chocolate producer and retailer in Portland, Maine. The case allows a comprehensive analysis of marketing, manufacturing, human resource, financial and strategic positioning issues in a small company with manufacturing, retailing, wholesaling and Internet operations.
The case presents a comprehensive and cross-enterprise view of firm strategy: issues regarding marketing, manufacturing, human resource, financial and strategic positioning all figure prominently in this small company, which encompasses manufacturing, retailing, wholesaling and Internet operations. Thus, this case fits well in an undergraduate or MBA strategy class and is ideal for evaluating student performance in a report style, in which students have adequate time to conduct the analysis.
The case also illustrates issues encountered when the small business' capabilities for growth must be developed, and shareholders and managers must be aligned on the growth opportunities to be pursued.
Finally, the case illustrates strategy implementation issues as the president must develop a plan for growth that includes building resources and capabilities within the organization. Implementation issues can be stressed further with the use of the (B) and (C) cases. The (B) case
focuses on a crisis point that involves an immediate response, and the (C) case
returns to a future-visioning perspective as the crisis is resolved. The short (B) and (C) cases are suitable for handing out to students to read in class.
United States, Small, 2012
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