A business strategy is the means by which it sets out to achieve its desired ends (objectives). It can simply be described as a long-term business planning. Typically a business strategy will cover a period of about 3-5 years (sometimes even longer). A business strategy is concerned with major resource issues e.g. raising the finance to build a new factory or plant. Strategies are also concerned with deciding on what products to allocate major resources to - for example when Coca-Cola launched Pooh Roo Juice in this country. Strategies are concerned with the scope of a business' activities i.e. what and where they produce. For example, BIC's scope is focused on three main product areas - lighters, pens, and razors, and they have developed superfactories in key geographical locations to produce these items. Two main categories of strategies can be identified:
1. Generic (general) strategies, and
2. Competitive strategies.
The main types of generic strategies that organisations can pursue are: 1. Growth i.e. the expansion of the company to purchase new assets, including new businesses, and to develop new products. The Inland Revenue has expanded from being just a tax collector, to other functions such as collecting student loan repayments and paying tax credits. 2. Internationalisation/globalisation i.e. moving operations into more and more countries. For example companies like Gillette, Coca-Cola, Kellogg's, and Cadbury Schweppes are major multinationals with operations across the globe. 3. Retrenchment involves cutting back to focus on your best lines. The Americans refer to this as 'sticking to the knitting' - i.e. concentrating on what you do best.
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