Case Studies

  • Simon & Schuster Photo

    Simon & Schuster

    Richard A. D'Aveni, Fred Wainwright T'02
    Length: 48 pages
    Publication date: 2001
    Case#: 6-0004

    In July of 2000, Simon & Schuster (S&S), one of the world's preeminent publishers of consumer books, agreed to a long-term strategic alliance with Lightning Source, a digital fulfillment service owned by Ingram Book Company. This alliance would include digital file conversion, digital rights management, e-book delivery to various devices and on-demand printing. 

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    Topics: Innovation, Services

    Industry: Publishing

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  • Electronic Trading Systems and Fixed Income Markets Photo

    Electronic Trading Systems and Fixed Income Markets

    Richard A. D'Aveni, Jonathan Joys T'02
    Length: 23 pages
    Publication date: 2001
    Case#: 6-0006

    Electronic trading systems have only recently begun to account for measurable levels of the $88 trillion in annual trading volume in the US fixed income market. The fixed income markets' adoption of the Internet represents a significant shift in power. The principal advantages are: (1) greater availability and speed of information, (2) the possibility of direct trading between investors, (3) reduced cost and errors in processing transactions, and (4) increased speed of execution. It also improves liquidity by providing the smaller investors (below the top 200) access to markets and transactions from which they were previously locked out.

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    Topics: Services

    Industry: Finance

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  • Polaroid: The i-Zone Brand Photo

    Polaroid: The i-Zone Brand

    Richard A. D'Aveni, W. Andrew Mims T'02, assisted by Alison Corcoran T'86 and Jeff Walker T'98
    Length: 26 pages
    Publication date: 2001
    Case#: 6-0007

    To alleviate the strain that digital photography was putting on film sales, Polaroid began focusing on digital output, partnering with companies, such as Olympus, to produce digital/instant hybrids that create digital images and print instant photos. Polaroid was also working on a wireless, mobile device that would print digital photographs onto film, which, although similar to instant film in some respects, was a much higher-performance medium.

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    Topics: Innovation

    Industry: Consumer Electronics

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  • Do You Yahoo? Photo

    Do You Yahoo?

    Jamie A. Neidig T'02, Professor Richard A. D'Aveni
    Length: 24 pages
    Publication date: 2001
    Case#: 6-0005

    Two recent changes in the competitive landscape, AOL's merger with Time Warner and Terra's acquisition of Lycos, were pitting Yahoo against 500-pound gorillas for both eyeballs and advertising dollars. Formidable competition was coming from small niche sites as well as large, traditional communications and media companies, including phone and cable companies.

    Yahoo was not considering mergers, but did make moves into new product lines ranging from e-commerce, to movies, Internet phone services, and intranet development. Considering Yahoo's expansion into so many new diverse product lines, Matt worried Yahoo was set to become the jack of all trades and the master of none. On the other hand, perhaps Yahoo was simply casting a wide net to become the portal with everything -- the portal of choice. Matt knew that Yahoo's historical strength was as a content aggregator, but he wondered if that model would sustain future success.

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    Topics: Internet / Connectivity, Media, Product Development

    Industry: Internet

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  • Stora Enso North America Photo

    Stora Enso North America

    Jesse Johnson, Chris Trimble
    Length: 23 pages
    Publication date: 2001
    Case#: 2-0001

    Robert Leach, VP of information technology for SENA had a vision of building an IT infrastructure that connected all of the participants in the paper supply chain and launching new service businesses enabled by the new infrastructure. Through a detailed description of the first two years of this effort, this case highlights many internal and external barriers. A good case to illustrate the specific operational reasons why some expectations formed in the dot.com bubble were unrealistic.

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    Topics: Manufacturing, Supply Chain

    Industry: Paper

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  • Participate.com Photo

    Participate.com


    Publication date: 2001
    Case#: 6-0002

    Participate.com views itself as a leader in the provision of outsourced community management services. Their CEO, Alan Warms, believes they have gained leadership position because they are number one in market revenues, they service a set of prestigious customers, they have the most experience in the community space, and they have intellectual capital and proprietary research. He knows too, that the difference between success and failure in online communities is about management and process, not just good technology. Now they are entering a phase in which they have to prove that their business model will sustain the high growth and profitability expected by investors. Can they add enough value to existing services and create new ones to reach their all-important revenue goals?

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    Topics: Innovation, Services

    Industry: Consulting

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  • Experience.com, Inc. Photo

    Experience.com, Inc.

    Alva H. Taylor, Phil Anderson, Lloyd Baskin T'01
    Length: 18 pages
    Publication date: 2001
    Case#: 6-0001

    The cornerstone of the recruiting solutions company Experience.com, Inc. had always been its relationships with college career centers: they worked with over 500 schools and 150 of these relationships were exclusive. In 2001, with the Monster/Jobtrak merger stepping up the competition, Experience.com began looking for a partner, primarily to leverage another firms' resources, including established sales forces and connections with employers.

    Preview copy in PDF format (126K)

    Topics: Innovation, Services

    Industry: Career Consulting

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  • Mattel, Inc: Vendor Operations in Asia Photo

    Mattel, Inc: Vendor Operations in Asia

    M. Eric Johnson, Tom Clock
    Length: 22 pages
    Publication date: 2000
    Case#: 1-0013

    After the announcement of the merger between Mattel, Inc. and its second largest rival, Tyco Toys, SVP Ron Montalto was embroiled in a debate over the sourcing strategy for the existing Hot Wheels product line and newly added Matchbox cars. Montalto had to decide whether Mattel should go forward with a new China plant, build a plant in Malaysia or Indonesia, expand one of the existing facilities, or outsource the surplus die-cast volume.

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    Topics: Manufacturing, Marketing, Sales, Supply Chain

    Industry: Toys/Video Games

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