The assignment requires you to conduct an in-depth strategic analysis of a multi-business firm, on both the corporate and business levels. The firm on which you conduct your analysis should be one from the following list:
Present a critical analysis of your chosen company’s business environment, current strategic position and future outlook on both the corporate and the business level. The analysis should encompass the following specific elements:
1. An analysis of the characteristics and attractiveness of the industries/markets that the firm operates in and how these are changing. If the firm operates in a wide variety of industries, you can focus on the industry or set of industries with the greatest strategic significance for the firm.
2. A business-level analysis of how the firm competes in these markets/industries – how does the firm aim to generate and sustain its competitive advantage? What kind of a competitive strategy does it utilize? What distinctive resources and capabilities does the firm possess? The business-level analysis should focus on the firm’s most important business unit(s) (by revenue or strategic significance) that operate in the markets considered in (i) above.
3. A corporate-level analysis – how do the firm’s different business units link together? How similar or different are the business units’ strategies and why? Why does the firm operate in these particular industries? What kind of synergies are there between the business units? What is the role of the corporate centre?
4. A statement of the (about) two or three main strategic challenges currently facing the company. Based on the above analysis, what are the key points of concern in the firm’s strategic situation, how is the firm’s strategic situation likely to develop in the future, and what challenges are involved?
5. An analysis of your suggested approach to managing the challenges identified in (iv) above along with some concrete suggestions for how the firm might deal with them.
6. A 500-word executive summary, presenting a condensed version of the whole report and aimed at aiding the firm’s top management in its decision making.
Use publicly available sources, such as annual reports, press releases and news articles, to gather information on the company’s strategy and the key strategic issues it is facing. Using appropriate strategic frameworks and concepts, analyse the company’s strategy, success and potential for competitive advantage. All sources used in the assignment must be properly referenced and included in the list of references.
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