Question 1. Pricing (600 words) 20%
After providing an overview of pricing strategies used by firms, provide specific examples of pricing strategy used by your company and critically evaluate them using the concepts and models learned in the course (this includes suggesting adoption of pricing strategies).
Question 2. Competitive advantage, strategy and innovation (800 words) 25%
In a famous article titled “What is strategy” published on the Harvard Business Review (HBR), prof. Michael Porter argues that operational effectiveness is not strategy. It creates competitive convergence but doesn’t lead to sustained competitive advantage. After explaining what operational effectiveness is, discuss what according to Porter, firms should do to gain sustained competitive advantage. Using Porter’s approach and referring to the examples he makes in the article, analyse your firm’s strategy. Does your firm have a clear strategy based on a competitive advantage likely to be sustained in the future? Note, in a different article titled “From competitive advantage to corporate strategy” also published on the HBR prof. Porter discusses the difference between the concepts of competitive strategy and corporate strategy. Keep in mind this difference not to make confusion when answering your portfolio question. Corporate strategy (and diversification) should be discussed in the answer on growth.
Question 3. Growth and internationalisation (1,600 words) 25%
3.1. Growth (800 words)
After briefly summarising your firm’s growth strategy to date, evaluate prospects for future growth, and in particular the role that external growth may play in the future of your company. In so doing, scan the market for another company that your firm could use to grow externally and justify your choice in the light of the concepts and case studies covered in the course. Comparing the different possible arrangements (merger, acquisition, alliance, JV; horizontal, vertical, conglomerate), specify those that would best suit your company the most, and analytically and critically discuss what would be the expected advantages, disadvantages and challenges for the company.
3.2. Internationalization (800 words) 30%
Your CEO has asked you to look at how the company can expand into foreign markets. By looking at a specific product offered by your company, and after evaluating existing evidence (in particular past firms’ case studies) and theories, identify a suitable internationalization strategy and a suitable foreign market. Clearly justify your recommendation by demonstrating knowledge of the company and its past internationalization history.