Case Study: Harley Davidson (HD)
Read the case study located on page 176 of the section titled Case Studies in your textbook and prepare a 7- to 10-page report in a Microsoft Word document, based on the following situation:
You have been asked to consult with Harley Davidson (HD) on three major strategic issues. In preparation of making recommendations for those issues.
You should write a report that addresses the following key strategic issues:
- Discuss the interaction among the economic, political, sociocultural, and technological sectors of the business environment to identify opportunities and threats.
- Summarize HD’s current strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats (SWOT).
- Appraise the effects of HD’s size, speed of strategic decision making and implemetation, innovation, and quality on their ability to take competitive action.
- What has HD’s corporate-level strategy been historically? Be sure to justify your answer with examples.
- Explain how this strategy will stand up against the competition and conditions in the industry.
- Would following an acquisition or merger strategy be a good idea? Why or why not? If you were to recommend pursuing an acquisition, what problems would you advise HD to watch out for?
- Discuss the uncertainties and risks of doing business in different regions throughout the world.
- Would HD be wise to pursue a cooperative strategy? If so, which type of cooperative strategy would be best, why would it be best, and with whom should HD pursue this strategy? If a cooperative strategy is not a good idea for HD explain why not.
Based upon your analysis, provide Harley Davidson with your recommendations related to their three major issues:
- Harley Davidson products are viewed as leisure items rather than necessities. How should HD push sales in a down economy? Should (or can) HD market their products as something other than leisure items?
- HD’s target market is difficult to manage. In recent years HD has attempted to broaden its age 29-55 male market by including younger riders and women. Is this the correct target market for HD? If so, should marketing be segmented? How? Would marketing to different segments water down HD’s image?
- HD’s product demand is difficult to manage. Recently overseas competition has refocused their product lines from the low end of the market to the more median price range. As they did this, they also broadened their product lines. How should HD manage their products? Should HD have a product line to meet the needs of the entire market or should they focus on one area of the market? If they follow a market focus strategy, what should their new target market be?