Case Study: Amazon
The word limit for this assignment is 3,000 words.
Read the short brief on Amazon below.
Case Background: Amazon
Successes and Failures of Amazon’s Growth Strategies: Causes and Consequences
By May 2017, Amazon shares traded at a record high, above USD1,000, which surpassed the share price of Google parent Alphabet. Started as an online bookstore 22 years earlier, Amazon had achieved unceasing growth, becoming the largest internet bookstore, the largest online marketplace, a global media company, and the most successful IT service provider. In 2015, the online retailer expanded to the brick-and-mortar retail business, launching Amazon Books across the US and beta-testing Amazon Go in Seattle. As of May 2017, Amazon was ranked ‘the most innovative company’ and the world’s fourth-largest company by market capitalisation.
To achieve this multi-faceted growth, Amazon has made countless strategic moves. The case explores Amazon’s 20-year path for growth and introduces both successful and failed strategic moves. Successful strategic moves are Marketplace, Prime, Amazon Web Services, and Kindle; failed strategic
moves are Auctions, A9 Search Engine, Endless, and Fire Phone. By identifying commonalities and differences among them, the case shows the causes and consequences of Amazon’s at-once stellar performance and severe setbacks. The case study applies Blue Ocean Strategy concepts to analyse its market-creating logic for future growth.
Kim M, W. C., Mauborgne, R., Koo, O. Y. (2017) Successes and Failures of Amazon’s Growth Strategies: Causes and Consequences. INSEAD.
Available online at: https://www.blueoceanstrategy.com/teaching-materials/amazon/ [Accessed 22 June 2020].
Write a report in response to the following tasks:
- Provide a brief introduction for your case study analysis report. (200 words)
- The introduction highlights key aspects to be covered in the assignment, including the relevant theories and frameworks applied to support analysis and evaluation in the tasks.
- The introduction also provides an overview of the case study. This could include, for example, highlights of the company’s background and key successes (5%)
- Using appropriate frameworks/models, identify and evaluate the key drivers of innovation contributing to the success of Amazon. (700 words)
- Key drivers of innovation contributing to the success of the case study have been clearly identified and the answer provides evidence of detailed critical evaluation (10%)
- Appropriate innovation and entrepreneurship frameworks/models have been applied to support the evaluation (10%)
- Using appropriate strategy frameworks, critically analyse the different approaches undertaken by Amazon to help shape its entrepreneurial vision and business model.
Your analysis in this task may include, but is not limited to, examples drawn from Amazon’s competitive strategies at both the business unit level and corporate level. (900 words)
Appropriate competitive strategy frameworks at both business unit level and corporate level have been carefully selected and applied in the analysis of the case study’s entrepreneurial approaches and success:
· Porter’s generic strategies framework and Bowman clock strategies model well applied to support analysis of business level competitive strategies (15%)
· Appropriate model such as Ansoff matrix well applied to support analysis of corporate level strategies (15%)
- Critically evaluate the following statement: Amazon’s success can be attributed to the successful application of the “Blue Ocean Strategy”. In your response, apply appropriate Blue Ocean tools and frameworks. (900 words)
- The concept of Blue Ocean strategy clearly explained. (5%)
- Answer provides critical evaluation, using specific examples, to back up the view that success of the case study is a result of the company’s effective application of Blue Ocean strategy (15%).
- Appropriate Blue Ocean tools and frameworks have been carefully selected and applied to support the analysis (10%)
- Write a clear conclusion that succinctly highlights the key aspects covered in your report in answer to the tasks above. (300 words)
- The report provides a brief conclusion that highlights the main points covered in the tasks. (5 %)
- The report is well written following an appropriate structure (5%)
- Harvard format has been correctly and consistently used in both citations and the reference list. This also includes correct use of citations where illustrations of relevant frameworks are presented in the report. (5 %)
- You should examine the given case briefing material and undertake further reading from other sources, e.g. journal articles, business reports and credible online sources to become familiar with the strategies and entrepreneurial activities of Amazon.
- Use appropriate and relevant tools, models or frameworks, and examples to support your analysis in each task.
- Blue Ocean Strategy website also provides useful information and tools that can be applied to complete task (d) (https://www.blueoceanstrategy.com/what-is-blue- ocean-strategy/)
- Use Harvard Referencing system consistently in citations and the reference list.
- Submit this assignment as a Microsoft Word file.