Industry Analysis This topic will provide an overview of the processes of strategy identification, evaluation, and formulation in single business firms. A critical task for any top executive is to develop a strategy for his or her organization to assure its survival in the face of a changing environment. Critical steps in that process include identifying the firm’s current strategy and its key components, evaluating that strategy in light of the need for change, and then making the necessary changes. In addition, formulating a competitive strategy requires an analysis of industry structure, as well as actions that attempt to create a competitive advantage. These and other issues will be addressed in our discussion of Crown, Cork & Seal by applying the concepts presented in the assigned readings. This is the third update of the classic CC&S case. The first covered the company up to 1964. At that time, Connelly had turned a very sick company around. A major issue for discussion was whether success would continue. This case describes CC&S up through 1989, and the issue of continued success is still important. One of the things that makes a general manager’s job interesting is that the issue never goes away. We will be concerned with both business strategy and industry dynamics in this case. Continuing consolidation in the industry raises the question of whether CC&S should become a bidder in the apparent sale of Continental Can. Management style also becomes an issue in this case. Connelly’s style is evident from the case. You may want to compare Connelly with other general managers you will meet in the cases. Why are some more successful than others? How can managers with such different styles be successful? Case: Crown Cork & Seal in 1989 Preparation Questions: 1. What are the industry structure and dynamics of the metal container industry? What are the industry trends? Implications of these trends? 2. What strategy does CC&S have for competing in this industry? What advantages does a firm the size of CC&S have for competing with American Can and Continental Can? 3. What are the major issues that William Avery faces in 1989? What advice would you offer him about these issues?
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