As the Times Online article below states, “Barely a year ago, The Co-operative Group was selling itself as an antidote to big business, an ethical alternative to the ruthlessness of mammon, but now it has decided to take on the Big Four supermarkets at their own game.”
So just what is the business strategy of the Co-op? Is ethical business consistent with profit maximisation? Does the takeover of Somerfield make the new Co-op a very different type of supermarket from that of a few months ago? The following articles look at the Co-op’s business strategy.
Co-op hits back with its own triple whammy Times Online, Marcus Leroux (30/11/09)
Christmas battle has started but the real test will be 2010 Telegraph, James Hall (5/12/09)
Co-op supermarket chain enjoys Somerfield boost BBC News, Will Smale (11/12/09)
See also the Co-operative group site:
- What do you understand by ‘ethical business’? Would you describe the Co-op as an ethical business?
- What type of merger is the one between the Co-op and Somerfield?
- What economies of scale are likely be realised by Co-op’s takeover of Somerfield?
- What type of growth strategy is the Co-operative group pursuing?
- Is being ethical likely to slow or accelerate the expansion of the Co-op?
In times of recession, some companies can do well, even in industries where there are supply problems. One such example is Pacific Andes, a Hong Kong based frozen seafood firm. Many fishing companies have found times tough in an era of dwindling fish stocks and fishing quotas imposed by governments anxious to preserve stocks. The following article looks at Pacific Andes and how it has managed to prosper despite supply challenges and the global recession.
Casting a wide net The Standard (Hong Kong) (24/8/09)
Details of overfishing in the UK can be found at: EyeOverFishing
The site provides a “map of the UK fisheries system, the problems with it, and solutions that are possible today”.
- To what extent can the concept of income elasticity of demand be used to help explain why Pacific Andes has managed to prosper during the recession?
- What specific business strategies has Pacific Andes adopted and why?
- Why, if overfishing is to the detriment of the fishing indsutry, do fishing fleets still overfish many parts of the oceans? Explain why this is an example of the ‘tragedy of the commons’.
- What would you understand by an ‘optimum level of fishing’ for a particular type of fish in a particular part of the oceans? Explore whether the concept of a ‘social optimum’ in this context is the same as an ‘environmental optimum’?