B2B Partnerships in the Carbonated Soft Drink Industry
(4 pages of text)
In February 2017, disruption in the carbonated soft drink value chain in the fictional city of Utopia has raised opportunities for prospective entrants to explore new business-to-business (B2B) partnerships at all levels in the value chain. This in-class, action-oriented strategic B2B partnership exercise has been designed to give learners experience in deciphering how B2B partnerships are built. In teams, participants assume the roles of the key value chain players in the soft drink industry (i.e., strategy heads of beverage companies, bottlers, big retailers, and small retail store owners). Teams are provided with an industry description and specific role information highlighting relevant constraints and opportunities. The teams then work to negotiate contracts during this in-class exercise.
This exercise is suitable for graduate level courses on strategic management, B2B management, and B2B pricing. After completion of this exercise, students will understand
- the strategies used by various value chain players in an industry to build and maintain B2B partnerships both upstream and downstream;
- the role of negotiations and bargaining powers in finalizing deals or entering into contracts with specific terms and conditions;
- the risk assessment strategies to arrive at the best possible scenario;
- the skill set required to handle negotiations and establish B2B partnerships; and
- the complex value chains of the beverage industry in general and of the soft drinks industry in particular.
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