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STRATEGIC MANAGEMENT

CASE STUDIES

ASSIGNMENT QUESTIONS

PART I

1

Case 1 Eastman Kodak

This is a case about the challenges an established firm has to face when a new technology produces disruptive effects on its core business. The case then offers an example of core capabilities that become obsolete with the entry of new technologies that require new resources and capabilities. Broad theoretical issues that must be considered when preparing this case:  How can a mature, successful firm survive a disruptive technology?  How can are new capabilities built and which ones of these new capabilities are most difficult to develop or acquire in the market for strategic factors? Specific questions for the preparation of the case-study 1. Did Kodak need to divest its chemical and pharmaceuticals businesses? Why couldn’t it expand into digital imaging while maintaining its chemical and healthcare interests? 2. What is Kodak’s strategy for building a presence in digital imaging? 3. Does Kodak possess the resources and capabilities needed to be successful in the market for digital imaging products? How is Kodak acquiring and building the capabilities it needs? 4. How does the organization of Kodak’s value chain change from traditional photography to digital imaging? 4. What advice would you offer Dan Carp? 5. What about the performance of this group today? Has Kodak managed to face the challenges of digital imaging?

Material for the preparation of the case-study (theoretical background)   Ghemawat P. (2006). Strategy and the Business Landscape. Pearson International Edition. Ch. 5. Besanko D., Dranove D., Shanley M. (2004). Economics of Strategy, Wiley. Ch. 14.



Eisenhardt, K. and J. Martin (2000). Dynamic capabilities: What are they? Strategic Management Journal, (21),pp.1105-1122

Material specific to this case-study  R. Grant (2003) Cases in Contemporary Strategy 3rd ed. Blackwell, Oxford.

2

Case 2 Virgin This is a case on diversification strategy. The case illustrates the difficulties in managing a diversified set of businesses and the consequences of a chaotic growth on performance. Broad theoretical issues that must be considered when preparing this case:  how can very different businesses be managed by a single company without destroying value?  How is it possible to extend a brand without damaging corporate integrity and strategic fit?  How is it possible to reconcile the entrepreneurial spirit typical of ‘serial’ entrepreneurs with effective control of a large diversified corporation?

Specific questions for the preparation of the case-study 1. What common resources and capabilities link the separate Virgin companies? 2. Which businesses, if any, should Branson consider divesting? 3. What criteria should Branson apply in deciding what new diversification to pursue? 4. What changes in the financial structure, organizational structure, and management systems of the Virgin group would you recommend? 5. What about the financial and market performance of Virgin Group today?

Material for the preparation of the case-study (theoretical background)   Ghemawat P. (2006). Strategy and the Business Landscape. Pearson International Edition. Ch. 5 and 6. Besanko D., Dranove D., Shanley M. (2004). Economics of Strategy, Wiley. Ch. 7. Montgomery, C.A. (1994). Corporate diversification. Journal of Economic Perspectives 8 (3), 163– 178.



Material specific to this case-study

 R. Grant (2003) Cases in Contemporary Strategy 3rd ed. Blackwell, Oxford.

3

Case 3 General Electric This is a case on the strategy of conglomerate corporations and the role of leadership in the creation of novel approaches to strategy and management of companies operating in mature markets. Broad theoretical issues that must be considered when preparing this case:  What are the most effective systems to coordinate and control a multi-product firm?  How and at what conditions a diversified firm create...
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