The Continental Products Case

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The Continental Products Case
Business Ethics Buad 3172
Professor: Thomas Eden
Alexandra Sjogren

Key facts
* Continental Products was the sales leader of manufacturing consumer hard goods for consumer use at home * The company was the subsidiary of Continental Grill, a family run company which was very popular among the employees thanks to good values, ethical treatment of the employees etc. * All of the manufacturing was based in the US and the company had a strong national brand within the country * Continental Products had all of the major national retailers such as Discounters, Home Centers etc. * The company was profitable thanks to economies of scale, competition in production efficiency, purchasing power and distribution costs * When China emerged as a manufacturing power, the traditional competitors disappeared until Continental Products was the only US based manufacturing company left * Retailer giants who emerged in the retail market bought goods directly from Far East factories, with the consequence that Continentals customers in a way also became their competitors

Primary Problems
The problems of the situation have both business as well as personal related aspects. The primary business problem is that Continental Products is facing a huge competitor in China, which threatens to overtake many of their customers. This can make the company less profitable since they are likely to lose market shares. Another business issue is the threat of losing the good reputation and the original values, which could be the consequence if the company will have to let go of many employees. Also, many of the company´s customers are buying goods directly from overseas, which make them both customers as well as competitors to Continental Products. The primary personal problem is that the company has to eliminate or at least downsize the workforce. This means a lot of employees will lose their jobs and might experience a hard time of supporting themselves and/or...
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