Laura Ashley Holdings plc: That Battle for Survival
1. Assess Laura Ashley’s recent performance. How serious is the company’s present predicament? 2. Identify reasons for poor and deteriorating financial performance. 3. What strategy recommendations would you offer to Mr. Cheong that would best serve the interests of Laura Ashley’s shareholders?
Session 3 Case:
Global Wine War 2009: New World versus Old
1. How did the French become the dominant competitors in the increasingly global wine industry for centuries? What sources of competitive advantage were they able to develop to support their exports? Where were they vulnerable?
2. What changes in the global industry structure and competitive dynamics led France and other traditional producers to lose market share to challengers from Australia, United States, and other New World Countries in the late twentieth century?
3. What advice would you offer today to the French Minister of Agriculture? To the head of the French wine industry association? To the owner of a mid-size well regarded Bordeaux vineyard producing wines in the premium and super premium categories?
4. What advice would you offer today to the Australian Minister of Agriculture? To the head of the Australian wine industry association? To the owner of a mid-size, well regarded vineyard in the Barossa Valley (a premier Australian wine region) producing wines in the premium and super premium categories?
5. What advice would you offer today to the US secretary of Agriculture? To the head of a major US wine industry Association? To the owner of a mid-size, well regarded vineyard in the Napa Valley producing wines in the premium and super premium categories?
Session 4 Case:
Wal-Mart Stores in 2009 (In Grant)
1. To what extent is Wal-Mart’s (WM) performance attributable to industry attractiveness and to what extent to competitive advantage?
2. In which of WM’s principal functions and activities (namely: purchasing, distribution and warehousing, instore operations, marketing, IT, HRM, organization and management systems/style) do WM’s main competitive advantages lie? Identify the distinctive resources and capabilities in each of these functions/activities.
3. To what extend it WM’s competitive advantage sustainable? Why have other retailers had limited success in imitating WM’s strategy and duplicating its competitive advantage?
4. How transferable is WM’s strategy? What limits its transferability?
Session 5 Case:
Cola Wars Continue: Coke and Pepsi in 2010, HBS 9-711-462
1. Why, historically, has the soft drink industry been so profitable? 2. Compare the economics of the concentrate business to that of the bottling business. Why is the profitability so different? 3. How has the competition between Coke and Pepsi affected the industry’s profits? 4. Can Coke and Pepsi sustain their profits in the wake of flattening demand and the growing popularity of non-CSDs?
Session 6 Case:
Newell Company: Corporate Strategy
1. Does Newell have a successful corporate-level strategy? Does the company add value to the businesses within its portfolio? 2. What are Newell’s distinctive resources?
3. What challenges faced the company in the late 1990s? 4. In this context, does the acquisition of Calphalon make sense? Rubbermaid?
Session 7 Case:
Atchison Corporation A
1. What was the situation at Atchison prior to Price Millman becoming CEO?
2. What should Price Millman do to make the Atchison Corporation more competitive?
3. What would you change first - strategy, structure, systems, or, …?
Session 8: June...