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Ben & Jerry’s Homemade Ice Cream Inc.: A Period of Transition

Essay by   •  March 2, 2018  •  Case Study  •  492 Words (2 Pages)  •  2,490 Views

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Ben & Jerry’s Homemade Ice Cream Inc.: A Period of Transition

1. What is your view of the strategy concept?

For me the concept of strategy is a theoretical model or tool that allows you to define and achieve your objectives. It includes all key elements that can bring you a competitive advantage over your competition if implemented successfully. Whether someone studied the concept of strategy in a MBA program or applied it intuitively, I am sure that 99% of most to become the best it definitely needs a strategy or you belong to the 1% that just had luck.

2. What role does strategy play in a business enterprise?

It contains the long term goals and defines the activities which help the enterprise to outperform the industry average if implemented consequently. In most industries the successful implementation of a strategy can be ultimately measured by the enterprise’s shareholder value.

3. What issues does Bob Holland face as CEO and what actions would I recoomend?

The main issue for Bob is Ben & Jerry’s ongoing transformation from a niche product – Ben & Jerry’s was famous for its superpremium mix-in flavors – to a mass product including a global expansion without being part of a multinational conglomerate. Not knowing how to achieve this ambitious goal the only way to succeed for Ben & Jerry was to hire a high profile CEO, which indicates, that there was no real strategy developed to achieve this goal and now it is up to Bob to develop and implement it. Bob needs to make a choice and define clear objectives where the company wants to go. If they want to be stand alone and not be part of a multinational corporation with much higher capital resources to afford an aggressive expansion strategy including high marketing expenses, Ben & Jerry’s needs to focus, and not do all at once. I suggest they focus on products they are well recognized for (mix-in flavors instead of smooth ice cream). Also when they think about expansion they should evaluate markets and decide on one or two new markets where their concept and values may fit in rather than dealing in multiple countries having only a minor market share.

Another issue is that Ben & Jerry just abandoned their newly implemented automated systems, which would be a key element to cost efficiently handle such mass production and become more profitable. It is now also up to Bob to improve the quality of those production systems and re-initiate the automation. A limited number of different ice creams may help for that.

Another issue is the social mission. As it is a stock listed company Bob has also responsibilities towards his shareholders and needs to find the



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