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Showing 51 through 75 of 29,534 results

Tesla's CEO Compensation Plan

by Krishna G. Palepu Sarah Mehta


CIAM: Home-Grown Shareholder Activism in France

by Vincent Dessain Charles C.Y. Wang Tonia Labruyere

The case discusses the strategy of CIAM, a French activist investment firm, involved in a case of a buy-out of minority shareholders in the telecommunications sector. Altice NV, an international telecommunications company based in the Netherlands that owned more than 77% of SFR Group shares, made a bid for the remaining shares of France's second largest mobile operator. Believing that the offer was woefully inadequate and constituted an abuse of power, CIAM had been fighting for a better offer as one of SFR's vocal minority shareholders with a series of action plans-leveraging legal, communications, and public relations tactics. CIAM had just received a new piece of information, divulging a potential misuse of SFR corporate assets by Altice, and was discussing next steps.

Experiencya Cuba: Two Entrepreneurs in Havana

by Charles F Wu Fernanda Miguel Mariana Cal

In 2019, two Cuban entrepreneurs discussed their growth strategy, given the regulatory framework instability, for private companies, in Cuba. Experiencya Cuba offered car and apartment rentals, airport pick-up, and tours around the island, all conducted in perfectly restored American cars from the 1950s.

The New LAX: Ready for Takeoff?

by Boris Groysberg Carin-Isabel Knoop Kerry Herman

Chair of LAX Board Sean Burton and LAX CEO Deborah Flint have made progress on streamlining and modernizing LAX's complex capital projects ($12 billion worth) while reorganizing and retooling Los Angeles World Airport (LAWA) staff resources, management processes, and revitalizing the LAX guest experience. From 2015-2019, LAX's performance improved, yet many challenges remained, and new ones continued to come to light. In December 2019, as Flint prepared to move onto a new position, Burton and the board are assessing the progress the team has made, and looking to next steps.

Amy Jen Su 1997

by Anthony J. Mayo


Amazon in 2019

by Sunil Gupta

Amazon launched its website in July 1995 to sell books online. Since then it has expanded into a variety of businesses that some see as unrelated. By 2019 Amazon has grown to become a digital giant with over $233 billion in annual sales but its profitability has been uneven. Has it spread itself too thin or is it positioning itself well for the future?

Influencer Marketing

by Jill Avery Ayelet Israeli

Despite a heavy barrage of advertising, most consumers declare that their purchases are most influenced by the experiences, advice, and recommendations of others, and not by marketers. Interpersonal communication between and among consumers serves as a potent path for influence, and by 2022, marketing managers are expected to spend $15 billion on influencer marketing, a marketing technique in which companies partner with people with specialized knowledge, expertise, authority, social position, and/or personal relationships that enable them to have influence over others to co-produce marketing messages to promote their brands via offline and electronic word-of-mouth. This technical note provides an overview of influencer marketing and discusses the various roles that influencers play for marketers, including delivering marketing messages in a more authentic voice and setting than that offered by more traditional advertising media where messages are authored by firms. It categorizes different types of influencers, explains the social psychological processes that make interpersonal influence work, and provides guidelines on how to identify people with influence. It discusses the opportunities and challenges related to measuring the performance of influencers and assessing the costs and return-on-investment of influencer marketing programs. Finally, it highlights emerging risks in the contemporary influencer marketing landscape.

Big Hit Entertainment and Blockbuster Band BTS: K-Pop Goes Global

by Anita Elberse Lizzy Woodham

Bang Si-Hyuk ('Hitman Bang') is the founder and co-chief executive officer of Big Hit Entertainment, the company behind BTS, a 'K-pop' band that has found unparalleled success around the globe-a remarkable feat given that most of their songs are in Korean. It is March 1, 2020. With its latest album, the band has now scored its fourth chart-topping album in the U.S. in less than two years. The band's popularity has been extremely lucrative: by some estimates, the BTS ecosystem accounts for a staggering $4.9 billion of South Korea's GDP. While K-pop has been dominated by three large companies-SM, YG, and JYP-since the mid 1990s, with BTS Bang arguably has created a K-pop phenomenon that is more global than any act the 'big three' have ever overseen. And whereas K-pop is traditionally associated with long-term, exclusive contracts between companies and their acts that pay the talent relatively modestly and give them little control, Bang seeks to foster a more balanced relationship with his superstar act. Is BTS well-positioned to sustain its success? Can Big Hit replicate that success with the select few other acts in its portfolio? And what does that say about the future of K-pop, and the manner in which music companies will manage the relationships with their talent?

2U: Higher Education Rewired

by Karim R. Lakhani Yael Grushka-Cockayne

In its 2019 Partner Symposium, 2U, an online program management provider (OPM), showcased its new vision: "Career. Curriculum. Continuum. A construct for lifelong learning in the 21st century". 2U, founded in 2008, and went public in 2014, was looking to expand beyond their current degree offerings to include a wider range of programs, such as short courses, bootcamps, and professional certificates. Led by co-founder and CEO Chip Paucek, 2U believed that they were the strongest partner in the OPM market that could enable universities' digital transformation, allowing them to offer a variety of courses to a changing student profile. The universities, on the other hand, recognized that times were changing and that the appeal of a residential experience might be dwindling. Pressures of offering a more flexible learning format were mounting. Some schools were engaging in partnerships such as with 2U to get themselves online while others saw digital and online as the next evolution of instruction and that it was their responsibility to learn how to master it and own it. The case considers Paucek's challenge of leading a for-profit OPM. Was 2U growing in a way that risked alienating their most important stakeholders, the brand named universities themselves? Were the university leaders going to change their approach and start investing in the digital transformation themselves to avoid giving 2U a cut of their revenues?

African American Inequality in the United States

by Janice H. Hammond A. Kamau Massey Mayra Garza

This note describes how historical and on-going policies and practices that discriminate against African Americans led to present-day inequality. Topics include slavery, segregation, Jim Crow laws, "black codes," and policies and practices relating to criminal justice, housing, and education.

Comcast Corporation (A)

by Sunil Gupta Felix Oberholzer-Gee Margaret Rodriguez Henry W. McGee

In March 2015, the U.S. television industry received a major wake-up call. HBO, a premium cable channel with over 30 million subscribers, had announced it would begin offering a standalone streaming service. This new service would allow customers to bypass the cable companies and get direct access to HBO's programming online. The announcement was followed closely by Brian Roberts, chief executive of the Comcast Corporation. Comcast was America's largest cable and internet service provider, having built a profitable business bundling television content and delivering it via cable networks to more than 20 million households. Broadcast and cable television was a $173 billion industry in the U.S., but the rise of on-demand and streaming services meant viewers had more options than ever before. What did developments such as HBO's new service mean for the future of Comcast, and for the industry overall?

Labor, Capital, and Government: The Anthracite Coal Strike of 1902

by David A. Moss Marc Campasano

In late October 1902, President Theodore Roosevelt felt relieved after months of anxiety and uncertainty. Workers in Pennsylvania's anthracite coal industry had been on strike for five months, threatening to leave eastern cities in the cold without enough heating fuel for the winter. Anthracite workers and business owners had finally reached an agreement after months of stalemate, and anthracite production resumed on October 23. The agreement - the first of its kind - put decision-making power in the hands of a federal commission, appointed by the president and empowered to determine terms of employment and various operational questions in the anthracite region. After a week-long investigation in the mines, the commission began hearing testimony from hundreds of representatives of the workers and their employers, the mine operators. The hearings finally closed in February 1903, after which the commission began formulating its final judgments. Members of the commission knew that their work would set an important precedent for industrial governance in the years ahead. Past U.S. presidents had helped put down strikes that threatened federal property or public safety, but the anthracite strike of 1902 marked the first time the government acted to resolve a strike both without force and without such a clear legal justification. The decisions of the commission would therefore have important ramifications not only for the anthracite industry, but potentially for American business-labor relations more generally. With copious amounts of data, testimony, and research to inform them, the commission members began the process of deciding how an American industry should, and would, operate.

Elders Limited

by Dawn Lau Forest L. Reinhardt


MoviePass: The "Get Big Fast" Strategy

by Daniel Fisher Benjamin C. Esty

In August 2017, MoviePass dramatically lowered its subscription price from $50 per month to just $10 for up to one movie per day. The idea was to rapidly scale the business to the point where it could generate incremental revenue streams from related businesses (e.g., a share of ticket and concession revenues from theaters, advertising revenue from movie studios; and revenue from ride-sharing companies). Within two days, Moviepass had gotten 150k new subscribers; within six months, it had more than 2 million. But as of February 2018, the company faced three challenges: theaters were resisting the concept, investors were shorting the stock in record numbers as losses mounted, and competitors were beginning to appear. Could CEO Lowe convince investors that the company was viable and it could, indeed, monetize the growing subscriber base? At the same time, Lowe had to decide whether to raise subscription prices to cover the growing losses or keep prices low to grow the subscriber base as quickly as possible.

Market Attractiveness

by Ashish Nanda

As a strategist, you must understand and calibrate the environment in which your organization operates. How generous or challenging is the environment? What forces drive the munificence or sparseness of your environment? How are those forces changing, and what is their likely impact on your organization? Is this change slow or fast? Can you influence or mold those forces in ways that benefit your organization? This module note, Market Attractiveness, helps you address these questions. It offers a framework to understand the forces that influence the environment in which your enterprise operates, evaluate the attractiveness of the environment, plan how best to respond to these forces, and contemplate how your enterprise can shape the environment favorably.

Amazon in Fashion

by John R. Wells Gabriel Ellsworth Benjamin Weinstock

According to many analysts and industry observes, in 2018 Amazon became the largest retailer of apparel in the United States and the second largest in the world, behind Alibaba. Much of Amazon's apparel was made by third party retailers on its platform, but Amazon had been working to build its own fashion retail skills for more than 15 years, and had made a number of acquisitions to this end. Having failed to convince leading brands to sell on Amazon, the company had also launched several private label lines to boost its presence in fashion apparel. However, in 2017, it had finally convinced leading brand Nike to sell direct on its platform. President of Amazon Fashion since June 2017, Christine M. Beauchamp (Harvard Business School MBA, 1997) was contemplating next steps. Meanwhile, leading online and fast-fashion specialists such as ASOS in the UK and Inditex in Spain did not appear to have much to be concerned about. However, many traditional fashion retailers, struggling to build effective multi-channels strategies, were facing slow growth and pressure on margins. Would 2018 mark the beginning of the demise of traditional fashion retailing? What role would the bricks and mortar channel in fashion retailing play in the future? What might the future look like for the fashion industry? And what role might Amazon play in it?

The Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic and the Global Economy (A)

by Alberto F. Cavallo Christian Godwin

In early 2020, a coronavirus pandemic swept the globe, ushering in unprecedented disruptions to the global economy. Both supply and demand were decimated by lockdowns and border closings, as well as reduced spending by fearful consumers. In response, governments around the world made equally unprecedented policy moves, spending trillions of dollars on fiscal stimulus measures to bridge the gap during the self-imposed shutdown. As the pandemic progressed, governments had to weigh the costs between loss of life due to opening up their economies and the economic devastation caused by delaying a reopening.

Race and Mass Incarceration in the United States

by Reshmaan N. Hussam Holly Fetter


ClearScore, 2018

by John R. Wells Benjamin Weinstock

In October 2017, Experian, one of the "Big Three" consumer credit reporting agencies in the United Kingdom made an offer to acquire ClearScore for a total consideration of 293 million. Founded by Justin Basini, Dan Cobley, and Nigel Morris in 2014, ClearScore was the UK's first company to offer consumers full credit reports and scores for free. ClearScore had accumulated over 5 million customers since its launch on July 15, 2015, and was growing rapidly. In the final quarter of 2017, it was set to reach break-even and deliver 27 million in revenues for the year. Was this the time to sell?

Airbus vs. Boeing (G): New Planes and Upgrades (2011)

by Ramon Casadesus-Masanell Karen Elterman

This case describes the first commercial flight of Boeing's 787 Dreamliner in 2011, three years after originally planned, as well as the first commercial flight of Airbus's superjumbo, the A380, in 2007. It also describes the companies' current endeavors in 2011, including Airbus's work on the A350 and A320neo and Boeing's development of the 737 MAX.

Oriental Land Co., Ltd. -Tokyo Disney Resort

by Ramon Casadesus-Masanell Akiko Kanno

This case describes the history of Oriental Land Co. Ltd.'s (OLC's) Tokyo Disney Resort (TDR), its operations, the extent of vertical integration, and the challenges it faced in 2018, as OLC's chairman and CEO, Toshio Kagami, contemplated how best to deal with congestion in the park. As of 2018, Tokyo Disneyland and Tokyo DisneySea, the two parks that comprised TDR, were the only Disney parks not owned and operated by Disney. Instead, OLC paid royalties to Disney based on the parks' revenue (in yen). The parks were immensely popular, but OLC had begun to see lower customer satisfaction ratings in recent years as high attendance led to long wait times. Although it continuously added new attractions to TDR, the company now faced a dilemma regarding how to expand further, given the limited land available around the parks. Kagami also considered whether to focus on OLC's other businesses, such as hotels, and even its nascent agriculture business, which it used to grow food served in the two parks.

TransDigm: The Acquisition of Aerosonic Corp.

by Daniel Fisher Benjamin C. Esty

In April 2013, TransDigm, a company that manufactured a wide range of highly engineered aerospace parts for both military and commercial aircraft, announced an agreement to acquire Aerosonic Corporation for $39 million in cash (1.2 times Aerosonic's sales of $31 million). Having acquired more than 40 companies in the past 20 years, TransDigm was an experienced acquirer with a unique business model focused exclusively on value creation. This case describes TransDigm's acquisition process with a focus on the merger negotiations and the key contractual terms in the merger agreement (break-up fees, go shop period, standstill provision, top-up options, etc.). It serves as a complement to the TransDigm in 2017 case (HBS #720-422). Whereas the TransDigm case provides an overview of the company, its history, its value creation strategy, and its financial performance, the Aerosonic case provides a deep dive into a single transaction as a way to illustrate TransDigm's acquisition-driven growth strategy and to practice valuing an acquisition offer using multiple methods. Ultimately, the goal is to understand the change in value from a standalone company to a fully integrated and value-enhanced subsidiary of the TransDigm Group.

Al Capone

by Tom Nicholas David Chen

In 1929, Chicago, IL mob boss Al Capone was at the height of his power. As head of the extensive crime organization known as "The Outfit" during most of U.S.'s Prohibition Era (1920-1933), Capone oversaw hundreds of brothels, speakeasies, and roadhouses which served as venues for gang-administered gambling, prostitution, and illegal alcohol sales. At their peak, yearly revenues from all of his enterprises combined totaled over $100 million. Capone's ability to operate these establishments with impunity stemmed from a combination of his political ties and a profound fear of reprisal. Capone's ascension had come at the tremendous loss of human life. Turf wars between Chicago gangs had caused roughly 700 gang-related deaths from 1920 to 1930. By some estimates, Capone had been directly or indirectly responsible for over 200 murders, the most notorious of which was the St. Valentine's Day Massacre in February 1929, a shootout that had killed seven men from a rival gang. The brutality, efficiency, and wealth of Capone's organization demonstrated the destructive forms of American entrepreneurship in the early 20th century.

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