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Tiger Brands Limited is a South African company involved in packaging goods. It is a fast-growing company that has both direct and indirect ties internationally including Zimbabwe, Kenya, Chile and Cameroon. It is the largest food company in South Africa, and it came into being with its first oatmeal that is known as Jungle Oats, a commodity in production to date by the company.
By starting international expansion with countries of its region, Tiger Brands has managed to use the home-base strategy. The company decided to expand its trade in countries were market could be penetrated with little effort like Cameroon, Zimbabwe, and Kenya. The nature of the range of commodities and products it provides also managed to give it an additional advantage.
Having in mind that Cameroon, Zimbabwe and Kenya are located in the same continent the Tiger Brand Limited was able to ensure that distance from place of origin was not that large. By using the home-based strategy, this company ran out of growth room locally. They decided to penetrate into some of the major countries in Africa, and, eventually, had to go international thus outsourcing to Chile.
By moving into China, Tiger Brand will have to undergo some crucial stages in its expansion. A major transition like this will have to take into consideration language since the company will have to recruit new employees, who can speak English. This is to ensure effective communication in its ranks. Nevertheless it can rebrand its products into Chinese so that its products sell fast.
Tiger Brand Limited is still involved in seafood packaging and will not have too much trouble accessing seafood since being a company situated in a country located next to the Indian Ocean (Porter & Tanner 1998). However, it might have to deal with competition from companies based in China, which have wider and better knowledge of how the market itself operates and how to set prices for its products. It will also have a slight advantage of being diverse in its consumer market. This can be argued from the point of view that many companies located in China are manufacturing companies in the seafood market, thus many products provided by the Tiger Brand Limited will penetrate the market in a slightly easier manner due to its advantage of being diverse.
This company will not have too much problem in restructuring its model considering that what one needs to penetrate the market in China is minimal as compared to a company that is new to this market. The changes, which will be necessary for this company to succeed in China, cannot be difficult enough to cause it to fail because of production of a wide variety of products.
First Solar is a company that had humble beginnings. It has only been around 10 years, but what it has to show is just enormous. The company transforms as a result of mergers and diversifies its market by getting into the solar industry. Its achievements are remarkable. The cadmium telluride, which is the material they use, has proved to be of lower cost. This of course enables it to be the number one choice for most photovoltaic installation requirements in the world. The company believes it has a growing market and an impressive performance.
One of the technologies that First Solar can be proud of is the photovoltaic gadget. This is a product of Charles Fritts. The efficiency for this device is low hence it is quite costly to produce. The increase in demand for solar energy seems to coincide with the growth and expansion of the First Solar. This means that sales are high throughout. Although this is evident, there still is the challenge of production, where prices of making the solar energy are very high, so that it is not possible to manufacture on a large scale without necessarily touching on the subsidies. The price of solar energy also depends on the location thus making it generally more costly than other sources of electric energy (Hiles, 2002).
In order to make solar power a bit more attractive, some countries have developed the concept known as feed-in tariffs. This functions to regulate the solar industry in terms of its growth. The idea is, however, not seen in all countries regardless of the effectiveness it portrays. Some of the countries that apply the idea are Germany, Italy and Spain. Several other countries in Europe were also brought on board. The United States, however, use a system called investment tax credit, which does not really stimulate the market as intended. This is seen as a major obstacle to the development of solar energy in the U.S. In terms of competition, First Solar focuses on production effectiveness and embraces the idea of green energy. To minimize cost, First Solar establishes its leading markets within countries with large subsidies. A large proportion of the company’s customers are in Europe because of the huge subsidies. Also it is worth noting that the market in the U.S. is very much fragmented.
When it comes to recommendations, First Solar should care to try out the home base. From the profile we see that location matters a lot when it comes to this energy industry. It would cut a lot of costs incurred in transportation. Talking of the portfolio strategy, it resembles that the one, which First Solar uses, appears to make the region establishments operating somehow independent.
They should find an efficient way of how regional establishments report to the home base. When it comes to using hub, the company is able to manufacture products that are suited to specific regions. This should, however, be used carefully to avoid restrictions of cross-trade among regions. This recommendation goes a long way to help the company reduce on unnecessary expenditure. Talking about mandate, First Solar should consider empowering each region in a unique way. For example, countries in the Europe area should be encouraged to serve just Europe while the U.S. goes ahead to serve the rest of the world.
The Nike Inc. is the leader in the production of sport wear goods in the world, with the headquarters in the U.S. The company has utilized the concept of value chain for its footwear to acquire a competitive advantage from its competitors. The company recognized the needs of its footwear customers following the Michael Porter’s value chain concept. The value chain includes functions, which support the process from the purchase of raw materials till the distribution of the finished product. These functions are incorporated with other departments in the company.
In its effort to produce products that conform with the needs of customers, the company, R&D department is concerned with taking into considerations customers’ request and preferences aimed to satisfy their needs. The department then re-engineers products according to specification of the customers. The company’s sales team is focused on the marketing of the products and requesting customers’ feedback in relation to their products and forwarding these feedbacks to R&D department (Fleisher & Bensoussan, 2007). The company has to interfere with the customers business strategies to distinguish between the critical and the nonstrategic customers, as understanding of the customer is of great strategic importance. This helps in identifying the value chain of the product analysis to distinguish customer’s direct supportive strategies to the firm. The discovery of the strategy will thus, result in gaining the ability to differentiate between the difficult roles of the strategies. This helps the company to concentrate on the core areas along the value chain. The Nike Inc. had to outsource the manufacturing and assembly of its footwear along the value chain, as it learned that this task of manufacturing was capable of being outsourced. The outsourcing of the company footwear usually did cost the company less than the company could achieve through its internal resources.
The company thus was concerned with strategies that were important to the production of their quality foot wear. The concentration of Nike Inc. headquarters proved to be costly and the production of the footwear was relatively of worse quality in comparison to its competitor. In order to add value to the products, the company strategized on ways to get raw materials of high quality for the production of the footwear. The sourcing of raw material was assigned to an independent company that had to supply the manufacturing and assembly plants with material that were less costly and of high quality. The finished products are marketed by the company to its customers through the department of sporting shoes and sporting goods stores. The company also involved in marketing and selling its products though the web and other independent stores, but they have their branded stores, which the company runs solely.
The core competence of Nike Inc. was realized to be more earning in the development of the footwear, marketing, and the management of the company branded stores. This was the area that the company perceived to be of importance to enhance the growth and maintenance of competitive advantage. There were created departments of the company responsible for designing products that were innovative and capable of meeting customers’ satisfaction. The operation of its branded retail stores helps the sales department to gather information from the customers, which enables them to understand the needs and preferences of the company’s footwear products consumers. The information and data gathered from customers is the feedback of the customer in relation to existing products in the market. This customer’s feedback is then passed to the department of research and development to re-engineer the existing products in regard to the customer’s specifications so that the products meet the needs and expectation of the customers.
This research and development department is still concerned with the creation of new designs that are attractive to the customers. This innovation is designed regarding the feedback they get directly from its customers from their branded retail stores. Thus, the innovation of new product basing on the customer’s information on preference enhances the production of goods that are acceptable to the market quickly at an affordable price. Thus, the lucrative business of the company is to support the development of new products in design and technologies and the architecture of its branded stores and locations of these stores (Koller, 2005).
The company has to outsource into the offshore markets as hence the company get maximum returns. The offshore markets have offered an opportunity to the company manufacturing and assembly, as the costs that are involved are less in comparison to the costs of home-based production. The offshore sourcing has also seen the production of quality footwear, which is in conformity with the needs and affordability of customers. Nike Inc. has contract companies in Asia, where most of its manufacturing and assembling are carried out.
This enhances the company to concentrate the core areas of product development and marketing thus lowering the operation costs while increasing profit. The concentration of the company on the marketing and development has enhanced the company to acquire competitive advantage from its competitors. The rationale of outsourcing of the company’s value chains has accelerated the reduction of operation expenditures on the manufacturing and assembling of footwear. The management personnel have been maintained at relatively minimal level even as the company expands. The cost, which the company would have incurred, is transferred to the contracted companies. The cost of production in the region is also cheap compared to the cost at home manufacturing, and this reduces the operation costs, and consequently lowers prices on its products.