Case Studies

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East Meets West: Rothschild's Investment in Indonesia's Bakrie Group

by Prof Morten Bennedsen(INSEAD), Dr Emir Hrnjić and Assoc Prof Yupana Wiwattanakantang

Publication Date: 07/01/2014

This case describes the challenges encountered by Nathaniel Rothschild after making a US$3 billion investment in 2010 in a family-owned business group in Asia. Scion of the Rothschild banking dynasty and private equity fund manager, Rothschild and his business associates created a LSE-listed shell company, Bumi PLC, which acquired PT Bumi Resources and Berau Coal. These were among Indonesia's largest coal mines and the largest coal exporters in the world, and were controlled by the Bakries, a powerful Indonesian family whose patriarch was a candidate for the presidency in 2014. After losing at least 70% of his investment in three years, Rothschild eventually requisitioned an extraordinary general meeting in February 2013, attempting to remove the Bakries and their associates from Bumi's management team. Despite western-style corporate governance manoeuvres, the PE investors found it challenging to control the politically connected family in Indonesia. 


Premier Foods Plc: Interest Rate Swaps

by Dr Jumana Zahalka and Assoc Prof Anand Srinivasan

Publication Date: 31/10/2013

A vice-president of a hedge fund must determine whether his fund will take a 5 per cent equity stake in Premier Foods Plc (Premier). At the time of the case, Premier, a publicly listed U.K. food and beverage company, was heavily indebted following a period of aggressive acquisition growth. Moreover, Premier had issued interest rate swaps on the majority of its debt. As the financial crisis unraveled, interest rates dramatically declined, and Premier's interest rate swaps appeared to be further draining the firm. Against this backdrop, the case sets its ultimate objective, which is to simulate the vice-president's analysis of the firm's debt, interest rate swaps, caps and floors before deciding whether to invest in Premier. 

For NUS Business School: (Faculty only)
To obtain a free copy of the case, please contact Ms Kwok Siew Geok (bizksg@nus.edu.sg)


The Beer Cases (D): Thai Bev

by Prof Andrew Karl Delios and Ms Donna Jimenez (BBA Hons graduated student)

Publication Date: 16/08/2013

The beer industry comprises elements of sub-national, national and global competition. To expand, the industry players use various strategic approaches as illustrated by five major beer companies: Anheuser-Busch InBev (9B11M124), Groupo Modelo (9B11M125), Tsingtao Brewery (9B11M126), San Miguel (9B09M074) and Thai Bev. Observations about the beer industry — a fairly easy product and industry to understand — can be extrapolated to other industries. Lessons can be drawn regarding the influence of industry pressures on the four key components of an international expansion strategy: product choice for expansion, market choice for geographic expansion, timing of entry and mode of entry.

For NUS Business School: (Faculty only)
To obtain a free copy of the case, please contact Ms Kwok Siew Geok (bizksg@nus.edu.sg)


Yamato Transport: Replicating Japanese Success in Singapore

by Mr Abhishek Aggarwal (MBA graduated student), Mr Rohit Kadam (MBA graduated student) and Assoc Prof Lawrence Loh

Publication Date: 09/05/2013 

Yamato Transport, Japan's leading parcel delivery company, experienced internationalization and geographical diversification issues. When it launched its operations in Singapore in 2010 with a view to further branching out into Southeast Asia, the company faced challenges owing to different cultural and social landscapes, difficulties penetrating a small and saturated market, and problems hiring manpower aligned with the company's business model. The key success factors for Yamato Transport in Japan and their applicability in Singapore are analyzed. What will it take for Yamato Transport to succeed in Singapore when pitted against the mighty SingPost?

For NUS Business School: (Faculty only) 
To obtain a free copy of the case, please contact Ms Kwok Siew Geok (bizksg@nus.edu.sg)


Balancing Stakeholder Interests at the Indonesian Railways

by Dr Marleen Dieleman

Publication Date:19/04/2013

The chief executive responsible for the Indonesian railways, a state-owned enterprise, is under pressure to show profits, but he also needs to balance widely diverging stakeholder expectations that include inexpensive transportation and excellent customer service. The government subsidizes the railway's passenger travel segment and has capped its fare prices, which has turned the railway's mainstay into a loss-making business. The chief executive wonders how to best trade off the different stakeholder expectations. He needs to develop a plan to present to the minister for State-Owned Enterprises.

For NUS Business School: (Faculty only) 
To obtain a free copy of the case, please contact Ms Kwok Siew Geok (bizksg@nus.edu.sg)


Healthway Medical

by Mr Noel Yeo (participant, Asia-Pacific EMBA Intake 21) and Assoc Prof Singfat Chu

Publication Date: 09/04/2013

A small publicly listed company is entertaining the idea of adding nursing home management to its medical value chain, which is currently focused on consultation. Management must rely on simulation in order to determine the feasibility of operating a nursing home according to admissions protocol and subsidies granted by a governmental agency.

For NUS Business School: (Faculty only) 
To obtain a free copy of the case, please contact Ms Kwok Siew Geok (bizksg@nus.edu.sg) 


EU Holidays

by Mr Yew Hoong Wong (participant, Asia-Pacific EMBA Intake 21) and Assoc Prof Singfat Chu

Publication Date: 18/03/2013

An up-and-coming travel agency faces the dilemma of offering maximum customer satisfaction while keeping its operating cost (e.g., fees for its tour guides) low. This case requires the development of an optimization template, which will advise management on the optimal assignment of tour leaders (within constraints of their availability and required rest periods) and generate maximum satisfaction among the customers.

For NUS Business School: (Faculty only) 
To obtain a free copy of the case, please contact Ms Kwok Siew Geok (bizksg@nus.edu.sg) 


Goran Kapicic at Actavis China

by Mr Joo Yong Lowe

Publication Date: 22/02/2013

The managing director of a multinational company turns a loss-making business into a profit-making venture by using his unique brand of leadership to change the organizational culture and develop a responsible proactive attitude in his employees. Throughout this process, many difficult personnel decisions must be made, including the decision to remove some senior employees who resist the necessary changes. Once under the new leadership team, recruitment and talent development become essential to the future growth of the company. The managing director wonders how to manage this challenge.

For NUS Business School: (Faculty only) 
To obtain a free copy of the case, please contact Ms Kwok Siew Geok (bizksg@nus.edu.sg) 


Food for Thought: The 2008 China Milk Scandal

by Assoc Prof Vivien K.G. Lim, Ms Rashimah Rajah (PhD student) and Ms Smrithi Prasad (MSc graduated student)

Publication Date: 08/02/2013

In 2008, a scandal in China involving milk products tainted with melamine (a chemical used in plastic production) brought regional and global attention to the country. More than 290,000 infants were affected and several died. At a time when international trade was important for China's economic development, the tainted milk scandal raised concerns about the safety of products and food made in China. The case illustrates how the pressure of rapid economic development resulted in measures to cut costs at the expense of consumer safety and health, bringing into question the ethics underlying business practices in the country. The lack of quality control and corporate governance processes on the part of the company and government facilitated the ease with which the milk was tampered. The case also documents remedial efforts that followed the scandal, including recall of the tainted milk products, putting new government policies and regulations in place, arrest of top executives and the companies' public apology in the unique form of a New Year text message.

For NUS Business School: (Faculty only) 
To obtain a free copy of the case, please contact Ms Kwok Siew Geok (bizksg@nus.edu.sg) 


Shanghai Baolong Automotive Corporation

by Assoc Prof Brian Hwarng and Mr Xuchuan Yuan (PhD student)

Publication Date: 25/10/2012

The president of a Chinese auto parts manufacturer is facing a crisis. For nearly 10 years the company's production lines have not been able to keep up with the orders. Deliveries are due, but the in-house stock is in short supply despite the production lines operating under extended hours. Quality issues have resulted in recent recalls in the United States, making the company's prospects worrisome. Faced with worsening international trade conditions and mounting problems, the chair and president decide to expedite the initiative of transforming their company into a lean manufacturer based on the Toyota Production System. However, the company has no in-house expertise or experience in lean production. The case presents a challenging situation faced by many companies as they move up the ladder of production competence and operational excellence. The major learning focuses on the adoption of Japanese production practices in an emerging Chinese company as it implements lean production.

For NUS Business School: (Faculty only) 
To obtain a free copy of the case, please contact Ms Kwok Siew Geok (bizksg@nus.edu.sg) 


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