Alsea: A New CEO Comes on Board
(7 pages of text)
Alsea was a Mexican-based, family-founded conglomerate operating in six countries in Latin America and Spain. It was a master franchiser for such well-known brands as Starbucks, Domino’s, and Burger King. In late 2016, after years of dramatic growth, Alsea appointed its first chief executive officer (CEO) who was not a family member or had not been involved with the company’s founding or early development. However, family members continued to occupy senior executive roles, serve on the company’s board, and hold significant shares in the company. In March 2017, the new CEO needed to decide on Alsea’s corporate strategy. He also needed to build trust with the founding family, which held a controlling interest in the firm. How should he engage the current executives in building a world-class senior management team? How could he best demonstrate his value to Alsea's board?
The case is intended for a corporate strategy course in an MBA/EMBA program or for a strategy course in a senior-level undergraduate business program. It can be used to illustrate the challenges of onboarding the first external CEO in a family firm, the issues associated with reporting to a board where four former CEOs are board members, and governance issues in a family business. After completion of the case, students will understand how to
- enter as an outsider CEO in a family-founded and family-controlled corporation;
- grow through a relatedly linked corporate strategy; and
- determine corporate-level strategies in international markets.
Accommodation & Food Services
Mexico, Colombia, Spain, Large, 2017
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