Swot - Li Ning

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|Strengths |Weaknesses |Opportunities |Threats | |Reputation in marketplace |lack of trendy designs |Could be a market leader in |potential substitutes for the | | | |sports |product | |comprehensive distribution |unclear product development |Product innovation |growing buyers bargaining power | |network |directions | | | |Product innovations ongoing |Lack of focus |internationalization of the |Changeable needs from customers | | | |products through sponsorship | |

SWOT Analysis - Strengths

Li-Ning has strong brand image; the reputation of the Li-Ning brand is reliable and trustworthy. As China’s top athletic wear maker, majority of the Chinese people view it as a kind of national brand because of its cooperation with various Chinese National Team, including China National Badminton Team. Li Ning had previously teamed up with the National Basketball Association to sponsor the “NBA Jam Van Tour”. It had also endorsed basketball superstar Shaquille O’Neal (albeit only in China). Li Ning has now sponsored teams from around the world in major sporting events such as the Olympics games. Li Ning currently sponsors China’s national badminton team. The badminton team became the 5th Chinese team to partner with Li Ning, along with the Chinese National Table Tennis Team, the Chinese National Gymnastics Team, the Chinese National Shooting Team and the Chinese National Diving Team. (http://www.encyclopedia.com/doc/1G1-199363625.html)

Li-Ning has a comprehensive distribution network, from 1990s, the first store opened in Beijing, currently it has more than 7000 stores all over China, besides, Li-Ning established distribution logistic model since 2000s and built up a supplier information database to manage the distribution network more effectively. What is more, Li-Ning is the only one brand which has its own official online shop which could be reached out by world-wide customer base. Li-Ning is banking on badminton as its break-through tool to expand outside China; Southeast Asia. Li-Ning envisioned itself to be the sports brand synonymous with badminton; the popular, prevalent and influential sport in Southeast Asia. "They understand the Chinese market better than international players, and their prices are lower," said Rui Wu, an analyst at JP Morgan. "Li Ning is definitely the market leader because it started earlier than the others." Analysts say the sportswear sector is a good way for investors to benefit from China's surging consumer boom. Retail sales in the country jumped 17 percent in 2008 to $1.3 trillion as increasingly well-heeled Chinese took an interest in better products and lifestyles. (http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSHKG13709320080221)

Innovation in technology is the third strength for Li-Ning, with its ongoing product innovations taking place aggressively. An example is an illustration on the badminton racquets: high-tech light shock absorption material filled in racket frame improves smash performance and avoids injuries from movements of the wrist. Li Ning has come out with innovations to produce about 600 different shoe styles a year. Furthermore, it hired key personals over the years in the form of Ned Frederick (a former research director at Nike) and Portsmouth (N.H.)-based Daniel Richard Design, which had worked with Converse and Saucony. An example of new technologies resulted was the ‘Basketball Bow’ which could compete with the Nike Air lineup in terms of technology. (http://www.lining.com/EN/competencies/inside-2_2.html)...
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