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Supporting Customers and Employees Navigate through the COVID-19 Crisis

Q1).
The case “Scotiabank: Supporting Customers and Employees Navigate through the COVID-19 Crisis” talks about how the Canada based multinational banking and financial services company, Scotiabank navigated through the COVID – 19 crisis. The case starts out with a brief history of Scotiabank. It then describes the company’s business strategy, which included the launch of innovative products by using digital technologies. The case touches upon the services launched by Scotiabank to ensure that customers had a stress-free banking experience and employees could support customers continuously during COVID – 19 pandemic. The case also describes the various financial products launched by Scotiabank to help customers overcome financial uncertainty. It also highlights how the bank was focussing on improving both its branch experience and user experience on its mobile banking application.
Issues
The case is structured to achieve the following teaching objectives:
· Understand how companies create better customer experience using digital technologies.
· Understand the strategies adopted by banks to combat COVID-19.
· Understand how technology solutions are key to banks’ strategies to fight against COVID-19 crisis.
Q.2).After serving over 87 million customers for 40 years, the old Frontier Airlines stopped operating in 1986. The old Frontier Airlines had once dominated the Denver hub until it started having financial troubles as a result of the increased competition in the deregulated aviation industry. In July of 1994, however, a group of old Frontier executives brought Frontier Airlines, Inc. (“Frontier”), a Colorado corporation, back to Denver International Airport (“DIA”). In 2006, the new Frontier was the second largest jet service carrier at DIA based on departures. Beginning with two leased Boeing 737-200 jets, Frontier now operated forty-six jets.
Initially serving small, under-serviced cities, the new Frontier grew steadily and flew to many of the popular destinations generally dominated by large airlines, such as Los Angeles, Chicago, New York, and Washington D.C. In addition, Frontier started offering international flights to Canada and many resort towns in Mexico. Due to the demand for Frontier’s product, the company also started Frontier JetExpress, a code sharing partnership focused on providing low-cost regional flights.
Frontier’s overall strategy was to “provide air service at affordable fares to high volume markets from [its] DIA hub and limited point-to-point routes outside of [its] DIA hub.” Targeting price-sensitive passengers in both the leisure and corporate travel markets, Frontier attempted to execute this strategy in several different ways. First, Frontier tried to stimulate demand by offering a combination of low fares, customer-oriented service, and rewards for its frequent flyers. In addition, it expanded its Denver operations by adding additional high volume markets to its current route system, using larger planes on popular routes to maximize economies of scale, and code sharing with a regional airline. However, in 2006, Frontier faced a new direct competitor, Southwest Airlines, on its home turf. With mounting losses and scarce resources, Frontier’s Board of Directors had to decide on the strategic options available to them. The case provides students the opportunity to decide which of those options was the best one for Frontier?
Issues:
» Identify Frontier Airline’s competitive strategy.
» Conduct an Industry analysis; identify industry key success factors, and develop a SWOT analysis for Frontier Airlines, assuming it has a low-cost, conservative growth strategy focused on providing quality customer service.
» Assess the company’s financial health.
» Evaluate potential strategic directions and recommend the most feasible alternative for the company?
Q.3).The case looks at Germany-based automobile manufacturer Audi’s successful run of 25 years in China, and discusses some of the factors that were responsible for its success. Audi entered China in 1986 through a joint venture with a Chinese company First Automobile Works Group Corp (FAW). From 1988, it started manufacturing and selling cars in China. Over the years, the company introduced several of its popular models in China and also made changes to its vehicles to suit the needs of Chinese customers. The company developed a huge distribution network in the country, which also contributed to its success. By 2011, China had become Audi’s largest market?
Audi gained popularity in the country as a vehicle for bureaucrats and government servants. But the changes in government policy that encouraged the use of vehicles manufactured by the local manufacturers to give a boost to the local automobile industry could impact Audi adversely. Over the years, the use of Audi’s cars by bureaucrats gave it the image of a vehicle for the wealthy and the old. Audi therefore needed to revamp its image in order to appeal to the youth and youngsters. Though Audi took several steps in this direction, it remains to be seen whether it will be able to appeal to this segment, and continue its successful run in China?
Issues:
» Understand the strategies followed by companies from developed countries when they enter developing countries and emerging economies.
» Understand the issues and challenges confronted by established companies in the face of changing market conditions and customer demands.
» Analyze how political and bureaucratic decisions can influence the strategies of companies.
Q.4).
The case discusses the entry of the US-based home improvement retailer Home Depot into China and its subsequent exit from the country. Home Depot entered China in 2002 by opening a sourcing office in the country. After studying the market, it decided to acquire the big-box stores of the fourth largest home improvement retailer in China, Home Way, in 2006. It acquired 12 stores of the company located in 6 cities. Home Depot remodeled and re-merchandized the Home Way stores and the rebranded stores were opened in August 2007.
Within a short span of time, Home Depot realized that its Do-it-yourself model was not acceptable to the Chinese, who preferred home improvement related work to be done by laborers and contractors. The Chinese lived in small houses, and could not store home improvement equipment like ladders etc. Also, instead of buying all the home improvement related things at one place, the Chinese preferred to visit several specialty stores before they finalized the products they would buy. Home Depot also found that retailers operated in a different way in China, and merely provided suppliers with a platform to sell the products; that suppliers had their own network, and even provided after sales services?
By then the Chinese economy had started to experience a slowdown, which impacted retail sales adversely. Despite its best efforts, Home Depot’s stores could not generate the kind of returns that it expected. It closed five stores between 2009 and 2011, and decided to concentrate on the remaining stores?
Even by late 2012, its performance was not up to the mark. Home Depot then decided to exit the big-box retailing in the country. However, it continued to operate through two specialty stores, and planned to develop the e-commerce business in China?
The case discusses in detail Home Depot’s pre-entry strategies, its entry into the market, the strategies it adopted in the Chinese market, and its subsequent decision to exit the big-box retail in China?
Issues:
» Understand the nature of problems faced by home improvement retailers like Home Depot in emerging markets like China.
» Study and analyze Home Depot’s pre-entry and entry strategies.
» Examine the reasons that prompted Home Depot to exit the market.
» Analyze the home improvement industry in China?
Q.5).This case is about Wal-Mart’s entry into the African continent and the challenges it faced. The case also highlights the challenges that Wal-Mart could encounter in establishing itself in the African retail market. Wal-Mart started to put more emphasis on the international markets to fuel its growth as the opportunities available in the domestic market had dwindled since the financial crisis of 2008. Wal-Mart started expanding into international markets in 1991. Previously, it had faced mixed results in global markets. While it was highly successful in some markets like Mexico, it also experienced failures in markets like Germany and South Korea.
Wal-Mart started to focus on Africa as other markets which offered good growth potential like India were still closed to foreign players. Some countries in Africa offered good growth opportunities for big MNCs like Wal-Mart despite the bevy of problems they faced like political instability and poor economic conditions. Wal-Mart decided to expand in Africa inorganically by acquiring a local retailer. Wal-Mart ran into trouble when some trade unions and government departments alleged that its entry would lead to huge job losses and damage the domestic manufacturing sector of South Africa. Though some analysts were optimistic that Wal-Mart’s business model might prove successful in Africa too because of the lower income levels of people in many African countries, others were still skeptical about Wal-Mart’s fortunes in Africa?
Issues:
» Understand the issues and challenges faced by multinational companies like Wal-Mart when entering new markets.
» The importance of MNCs understanding the local market conditions when entering new markets.
» Analyze the strategies that need to be followed by companies when entering a foreign market of which they have little experience.
» The strategies that Wal-Mart should follow in the future to succeed in the African market.
» The lessons that Wal-Mart should learn from its experiences in international markets like Germany and South Korea.
» The policies that Wal-Mart should follow to avoid any future controversies that it might face regarding its business practices in Africa.
Q.6).This case discusses how Nokia launched a fight back to maintain its position in key emerging markets of China and India. In 2009, Nokia’s mobile phones had commanded a market share of 33% in China and around 60% in India. Nokia dominated the below US$50 priced phone segment in the emerging markets, which formed a major chunk of the market. However, with the entry of local manufacturers offering phones with more features and at a cheaper price range – Nokia began losing its hold on these markets. By 2012, its market share in China had shrunk to 15% and in India to 23% – but it still stood No.1 in terms of market share in the Indian market.
Nokia also faced stiff competition at the higher-end – the smartphone segment – in the developed countries. By early 2012, Nokia was displaced from its number one position (by Samsung) in the global market as well as in the emerging market of China. The slumping market share had become a major concern for the company and its CEO Stephen Elop (Elop) – in both developed and emerging economies. The company was more concerned about the emerging economies as it considered them to be its driver for future growth. The question before the management was how to arrest the erosion of its market share in these two key markets?
Issues:
» How Nokia was trying to fend off competitors from emerging low cost rivals in India and China.
» Understand key issues and challenges for an MNC while operating in emerging markets.
» Study the turnaround efforts of Nokia and explore further steps that the company could take in turning around its fortunes in India and China.
Q.7).The Ford Motor Company is one of the largest automobile companies in the world, with a history of more than 100 years. The company has successfully negotiated through several troughs and crests in its checkered past. The case recounts some of the restructuring efforts made by the company in the 1990s and 2000s. It then discusses the ‘One Ford’ strategy in detail and provides information on how the strategy was implemented between 2006 and 2012. The case ends with a brief discussion on future prospects for the company?
Issues:
» analyze the factors that led the company to devise the ‘One Ford’ strategy
» appreciate the efforts made by the company to realign its organization structure so as to match market reality and changing customer preferences
» critically analyze the implementation of the ‘One Ford’ strategy
» assess the future prospects of the company in light of the restructuring efforts

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