Unit 4: Business Environment

Illustrate the challenges faced by management when deciding on strategic direction
Apply a range of strategic theoretical frameworks to a variety of organisations studied.
Case Tactical scenarios: How do you defeat a major competitor?
Your information
You are a medium-sized manufacturing firm selling retail products wholesale to high street retailers. You are a market follower. You wish to launch a new product into a market x dominated by a large multinational player. There are
only a few other fragmented competitors. Your sector has four main markets W, X, Y and Z. You know the following facts about your large competitor and the market. They have a rigid threat response, always throwing all their resources into a position defence, usually discounting prices until the threat is defeated. They are predictable. They control much of the supply chain into the retailers. They hold cost leadership in the industry by some margin of comfort and are cash-rich.
They take up to 6 months to respond to competitive moves. They are slow. Your intelligence tells you they are launching a huge new product into market y in 3 months’ time. You can usually plan and launch a new product fully supported by marketing in 2 months. You have enough resources to launch a 6 month campaign in 3 segments or 3 month campaign in
all four segments. The competition often leaks their strategic moves in advance and such leaks have tended to be
reliable. Around 40% of the target demographic group buy the product category. Many potential younger
customers are unserved by the industry. They like to lead in every segment in all four markets. They have market leader syndrome. A reminder of our your task in the seminar. Using the flip chart sheets provided, construct a visualization of the battlefield. Consider the type of battle strategy you might use to outmanoeuvre the enemy (for instance,
defensive, offensive, full-frontal attack, flanking attack, pre-emptive strike etc. Clue: Don’t just think in terms of a single move!! Think move and counter move. How will competitors respond to your moves?

Assignment Task
Drawing on your seminar experience, identify and discuss the strategic options that were presented. Suggested structure and approximate weighting of marks 1 – Identify relevant strategies, linking to any relevant frameworks and models (20%)
2 – Analyse what scenarios were presented to outmanoeuvre the competition (40%). 3 – Evaluate the achievable strategic options. (40%). Word count: Up to 1000 words. Please take care of the presentation of your submission. Appendices
should be used for essential information only and should be clearly referenced in the text. Total word count should be clearly indicated on the submission of the assignment. Penalties will apply for exceeding word count.