Case, Simulation & Pedagogy

The ISB has constantly endeavoured to facilitate teaching excellence and upgrade pedagogy by bringing real-world knowledge into the classroom. One of the important ways it achieves this is through the development of business cases and simulations that enrich understanding of real-life management challenges at every level. In this pursuit, we have partnered with the Richard Ivey School of Business, University of Western Ontario (Ivey), Canada to develop and promote high-quality case studies specific to India and the emerging markets with the support of ISB faculty as well as faculty from other leading B-schools worldwide.

Cases Rajesh Panda, Madhvi Sethi, Pooja Gupta. "Swadhaar: Self-Support through Financial Services", 2020Centre for Learning and Management PracticeRead Description >Close >

Discipline: Finance, Entrepreneurship
Industry: Finance and Insurance
Length: 16 pages
Subjects covered: microfinance, mission drift, impact investing, sustainable development
Publication Date: January 17, 2020
 
Description: 

Swadhaar FinServe Private Limited (Swadhaar), a non-banking financial company–microfinance institution (NBFC-MFI), was set up in Mumbai, India in 2008 with the objective of providing the urban poor with increased access to financial services. Swadhaar was a leading provider of financial services to clients in several major states of India. Between 2009 and 2013, there were major changes in the regulatory environment; some of these restricted the scope of MFIs and others opened new business opportunities. Although Swadhaar was able to reach financial sustainability with its existing business model, its founder was always looking at growth strategies to achieve her mission. In late 2014, RBL Bank Ltd. offered to become a strategic investor in Swadhaar. In early 2015, Swadhaar’s founder needed to decide whether or not to accept RBL Bank Ltd.’s proposal.

Learning objective:

The case is best suited for a graduate-level course on financial markets and institutions or strategic management. The case can also be used in specialized courses on topics like microfinance, sustainable development, developmental economics, or impact investing. After working through the case and assignment questions, students will be able to do the following:

  • Describe the microfinance environment in India and the role of a non-banking financial company–microfinance institution (NBFC-MFI) in micro lending to urban poor.
  • Define the concept of mission drift, and explain the trade-off between financial sustainability and the social objectives of NBFC-MFIs.
  • Describe the impact of a changing regulatory environment on the strategic choices available to NBFC-MFIs.
  • Identify the motivations of investors in socially responsible businesses like microfinance institutions, and analyze their impact on the investing landscape.


     


CasesBhatnagar, Navneet. "The Survival Battle of the Deccan Chronicle", Sage Publications, 2020Thomas Schmidheiny Centre for Family EnterpriseRead Description >Close >
This case discusses the growth and governance challenges of the Deccan Chronicle, a family-owned newspaper. The publication was established in 1938 as a partnership firm at Hyderabad, India. Due to high operating costs, the firm accumulated huge debt. In 1977, it was bought by a businessman, T. Chandrasekhar Reddy. Subsequently, his sons joined the business, modernized the printing machinery and launched multiple editions. By 2000, Deccan Chronicle became the tenth most circulated newspaper in India. In 2004, the partnership firm was converted into a public limited company - ‘Deccan Chronicle Holdings Limited (DCHL) and made a public offer of shares. With this capital, the company expanded its newspaper business in south India. DCHL also made huge investments in several unrelated businesses. These businesses (viz. a bookstore chain, an air freight venture and a chartered flight service) seemed attractive but DCHL did not have the capabilities and experience in managing those businesses. Poor strategic decisions, extravagant lifestyle of the owner family members and financial mismanagement led the company to bankruptcy. One of its lenders, the Kolkata-based SREI Infrastructure Finance got its loan converted into equity and became the largest shareholder of DCHL. SREI had proposed a plan to take over the company and revive the business. The other creditors were to meet soon to decide the fate of DCHL.
 
Essentially, this case helps the instructor to make the participants understand the importance of family business governance and of calibrating family business growth aspirations with available resources and capabilities.



CasesBhatnagar, Navneet., Ramachandran, Kavil. "The Emami Mission to the Next Orbit", ISBN: 9781529709520, New Delhi, Sage Publications, 2020Thomas Schmidheiny Centre for Family EnterpriseRead Description >Close >This case is about the challenges of professionalisation and succession faced by an Indian, family controlled, personal-care products company, Emami Limited. Emami was setup in 1974 at Kolkata by two childhood friends, Radhe Shyam Agarwal (RSA) and Radhe Shyam Goenka (RSG). They started with a small capital of INR 20,000 and had grown the business to INR 1.8 bn in sales by financial year 2013-14. Emami had earned a reputation for being innovative in development of products based on keen consumer insights. Ever since Emami tasted initial success in business (i.e. within 3-4 years of its inception), the company adopted an inorganic strategy for growth and made several strategic business acquisitions. As the business grew, it implemented organizational changes, brought in functional experts from outside and professionalised its operations.

During the first four decades since it was founded, Emami grew its product portfolio to include ayurvedic formulations and nutraceuticals. Besides, the group diversified in other businesses such as paper, real estate and construction. However, Emami Limited, the personal care company continued to be the group’s flagship that generated most of its wealth. Business growth increased the complexities of Emami’s operations. In order to manage those complexities Emami made efforts to professionalise their systems and processes.

However, as the founders grew older, they had realized the need for succession planning to pass on the leadership to the next generation. They were also cognizant of the need to establish family governance mechanisms and structures to ensure Emami’s sustainability across generations. Another key challenge they faced was how and whom to select as their successor because their children had been brought up together, had similar educational qualifications, business experience and performance record. It was quite hard for them to pick one member over the other.

CasesSonia Mehrotra, Uday Salunkhe. "P.N. Gadgil Jewellers: Managing a Family Brand", 2020Centre for Learning and Management PracticeRead Description >Close >

Discipline: General Management/Strategy,  International
Industry: Retail Trade
Length: 13 pages (10 pages of text)
Subjects covered: family business, family business brand, professionalization, business strategy
Publication Date: January 23, 2020

Description:
Swadhaar FinServe Private Limited (Swadhaar), a non-banking financial company–microfinance institution (NBFC-MFI), was set up in Mumbai, India in 2008 with the objective of providing the urban poor with increased access to financial services. Swadhaar was a leading provider of financial services to clients in several major states of India. Between 2009 and 2013, there were major changes in the regulatory environment; some of these restricted the scope of MFIs and others opened new business opportunities. Although Swadhaar was able to reach financial sustainability with its existing business model, its founder was always looking at growth strategies to achieve her mission. In late 2014, RBL Bank Ltd. offered to become a strategic investor in Swadhaar. In early 2015, Swadhaar’s founder needed to decide whether or not to accept RBL Bank Ltd.’s proposal.

Learning objective:
This case is designed for graduate-, postgraduate-, and executive-level courses related to ownership, management, and operation of a family business. After working through the case and assignment questions, students will be able to,

  • discuss the growth of a family business from humble beginnings to a successful global business;
  • discuss the challenges involved in professionalizing a family business operation;
  • understand the importance of branding and its benefits to the internal and external operations of a family business; and
  • analyze the strategic advantages of leveraging the family business brand.


CasesSarang Deo, Geetika Shah. "Tata Memorial Centre: Propagating Excellence in Clinical Operations", 2020Centre for Learning and Management PracticeRead Description >Close >Discipline: Operations Management
Industry: Hospitals
Length: 27p
Subjects covered: Operations, Service system design, Administration
Publication Date: Jan 20, 2020
 
Description: 
Evidence based medicine (EBM) requires a level of maturity in the processes, both clinical and non-clinical, which is gained typically over years through consistent deliberate efforts. It is argued that the role of clinical leadership is critical to this. In addition, challenges of implementing EBM are easiest to surmount in single location organizations but complicate considerably when there are multiple distributed locations. While EBM is gaining momentum in health care systems of more developed countries, examples of successful implementation are few in India. Indian institutions face the unique challenge of sorting through multiple bases of foreign evidence (differing guidelines in the UK and U.S.) in addition to domestic evidence covering interventions less frequently used outside of India. The Tata Memorial Centre (TMC) is a pioneer in cancer care and research in India. Over several decades, they have developed an indigenous approach to development and implementation of Evidence based medicine, which has catapulted them into leading cancer hospitals in the world. Set in March 2016, this case study describes TMC's journey thus far with particular emphasis on changes in organizational design as key enablers. TMC's next frontier is to propagate this model of clinical excellence to other cancer hospitals in India through the formation of National Cancer Grid. The key challenge confronting Dr. Rajendra Badwe, Director of TMC, is can these other hospitals accelerate their journey based on the learnings from TMC or whether they will have to customize their approach based on their own operating context. More broadly, which elements of TMC's clinical excellence model are replicable in other hospitals and what organizational changes would be required to implement them.

Learning objective:
To demonstrate how a healthcare delivery organization makes organizational design changes and evaluate if it results in systematic improvement in management of its clinical processes and research capabilities of its faculty; To provide some insights on how to generate and implement evidence-based medicine in large organizations; To highlight the importance and inherent challenges of disseminating best practices across healthcare delivery organizations in the context of resource-limited settings.

Cases Nidheesh Joseph, Abhishek Totawar, Ranjeet Nambudiri. "Mannarkkad Rural Service Co-operative Bank: Innovating at the Edge", 2020Centre for Learning and Management PracticeRead Description >Close >

Discipline: Organizational Behaviour/Leadership, Entrepreneurship, International
Industry: Finance and Insurance
Length: 10 pages
Subjects covered: organisational change, innovation, crisis leadership, demonetisation
Publication Date: March 12, 2020

Description:
In November 2016, the secretary of Mannarkkad Rural Service Co-operative Bank Ltd. (MCB) based in Kerala, India, learned that the prime minister of India had announced that large-denomination currency notes would be invalid as of midnight November 8. This demonetisation move was to eradicate unaccounted for “black money” from the nation. Co-operative banks like MCB were excluded from the purview of India’s central bank, the Reserve Bank of India, and as a primary agricultural credit society providing short-term credit to rural borrowers, MCB stood out from similar institutions by providing best-in-class banking services and constantly innovating to meet its vision of providing “the pleasure of personal banking” to its customers. MCB was the only bank in India to provide 24/7, 365-day banking operations through its overnight counter, and through a series of innovations, it had successfully pushed the boundaries of a rural co-operative bank to provide maximum convenience to its customers. The secretary of MCB now had to make some critical decisions: How should MCB handle the demonetisation crisis with its existing and potential customers? Should MCB keep its overnight counter open? Should the secretary alert the bank’s micro-ATM agents? Would MCB’s parent bank provide funds? How could he address these concerns in a way that would maintain the goodwill MCB had built up among its customers over the past 27 years?
 

Learning objective:
This case is designed for graduate-, postgraduate-, and executive-level courses related to ownership, management, and operation of a family business. After working through the case and assignment questions, students will be able to,

  • discuss the growth of a family business from humble beginnings to a successful global business;
  • discuss the challenges involved in professionalising a family business operation;
  • understand the importance of branding and its benefits to the internal and external operations of a family business; and
  • analyse the strategic advantages of leveraging the family business brand.


CasesPrachee Javadekar, Gandhali Divekar, D.V.R. Seshadri. "Airport Service Transformation - Case of Delhi International Airport", 2020Centre for Learning and Management PracticeRead Description >Close >Discipline: Entrepreneurship
Industry: Airports
Length: 18p
Subjects covered: Public-private partnerships, Operations, SERVQUAL, Service strategy, Entrepreneurship, Customer relationship management, Customer experiences, Government regulations
Publication Date: March 11, 2020
 
Description: 
Bringing service transformation is always a challenge for any organization. this is not anymore dependent upon the bifurcation of business as into product selling or service selling. All successful businesses are finally customer centric and experience centric. Rather They are focused on how and what the customers feel about the organization for them to want to enter into long term relationships with that company. The case of Delhi International Airport discusses the challenges faced by an entrepreneur to bring his business philosophy and values int reality. physical infrastructure is the tangible component ; behavior, attitude, empathy of the people serving the customers are intangible and critical components. Policies, Processes , Structure and Strategies are the part of the organization design. This case revolves around the complexities Rao faced and then addressed service culture issues in the face of socio economic and policy hurdles forms the learning from the case. This case posses important questions about linking the three key factors, i.e. functioning of th airport, involvement of the private player, evolution of PPP policy in India, with the vital aspect of customer service experience in the Indian airports. The case highlights the complexities of the Indian business environment where service thinking and customer centric service design are largely lacking. It focuses on the entrepreneurs decisions to align the various stakeholders to create service experience for airport customers.

Learning objective:
To understand service transformation principles the challenges faced by an entrepreneur in large infrastructure sector in bringing about changes in the service mindset to enable the organization to transit from quality to excellence. Courses - Management Education & Executive Education. Focuses on understanding of Service experience creation challenges for private players operating under various PPP projects.

CasesSaumya Sindhwani, M. Kanchan, Lakshmi Appasamy. "Walmart-Flipkart: A Deal Worth Its Price?", 2020Centre for Learning and Management PracticeRead Description >Close >Discipline: Negotiation
Length: 22p
Subjects covered: Acquisition, Acquisition premium, Negotiation, Finance, Valuation
Publication Date: March 26, 2020
 
Description: 
The case, set in May 2018, follows an analyst as she undertakes the challenge of decoding the acquisition strategy behind a deal that rattled both venture capitalist and tech startup circles in India. Ananya Menon, Chief Consultant for Retail and E-Commerce at a research and consulting firm in India, had been asked by a client to provide a report on the recent acquisition of the Indian marketplace major Flipkart Pvt. Limited by the Arkansas-based retail behemoth Walmart Inc. Founded in 2007, Flipkart, buoyed by multiple massive funding rounds, had registered meteoric growth both in terms of revenue and market share, and dominated the Indian online retail industry. Though it faced a few setbacks due to misplaced strategies and regulatory changes, it managed to cement its position as the market leader with a share of nearly 40% of the market in terms of gross merchandise value (GMV). However, analysts were sceptical about the sustainability of this position, as the company was a long way from profitability and was burning cash in the form of massive discounts to augment its customer base. Moreover, Amazon Inc., another leading global marketplace company, with deep pockets and top-of-the-line technological capabilities, was close on its heels. Walmart had waited on the fringes of the Indian retail industry since 2007 when the market was opened to foreign investors, but regulatory barriers had confined its operations to the wholesale segment. The e-commerce segment was opened to foreign investment eventually, but under several restrictive conditions. Walmart leapt at the chance and acquired a 77% stake in Flipkart, the leader in the online retail segment. However, the deal price of US$ 16 billion for a company that was consistently making huge net losses sent shockwaves across the VC and e-commerce community. As speculation and debate over the move mounted, Menon was tasked by her client with demystifying the strategic rationale behind the deal.

Learning objective:
From the case discussion, students will learn to: · Analyze and evaluate the rationale for M&A deals; · Analyse the risks and implications involved in M&A; · Value a tech startup that is a potential acquisition target. This case is suitable for undergraduate and postgraduate classes exploring market entry and consolidation strategies, and for introducing them to the fundamentals of business valuation.

CasesPhilip Zerrillo, Steven Burton. "Bringing Rigor to Admissions: National Management University", 2020Centre for Learning and Management PracticeRead Description >Close >Discipline: Strategy 
Industry: Colleges & universities
Length: 4p
Subjects covered: Stages in the buying process, Decision making, Marketing, Sales, Consumers, Target markets, Sales promotions
Publication Date: March 31, 2020
 
Description: 
This case is set in the education industry. The President of National Management University (NMU), a fictional university in Singapore, has asked a professor to assume the role of the Dean of Graduate Studies with a mandate to reverse the trend of declining enrollments at the university. The 20-year-old university was among the top five in the nation and had been offering graduate programs for a decade. It had begun to witness a decline in enrollments that was concerning from both a financial sustainability perspective and in view of the lofty growth targets set by the university board. To assist him in getting to the root of the current problem and finding a solution, the new Dean has asked for, and received, a large amount of information on the university's marketing and promotion activities and expenditures, its choice of media and venue for its spends, the speed of student enrollment and the effectiveness of its campaigns. He hopes the data will provide potential answers as to how to better spend university resources to increase student recruitment and achieve the growth targets.

Learning objective:
The discussion of the case helps students gain a better understanding of:
  • the effective use of promotional expenditure;
  • the need for speed in the sales process;
  • the effectiveness of each step in the sales or buying process;
  • the use of data and metrics to drive decisions.


CasesShlomo Maital, D.V.R. Seshadri, Swati Sisodia. "L. V. Prasad Eye Institute: Innovating the Business of Eye Care", 2020Centre for Learning and Management PracticeRead Description >Close >Discipline: Entrepreneurship
Industry: Eye care
Length: 18p
Subjects covered: Entrepreneurship, Innovation, Leadership, Strategic thinking, Strategy, Managing creativity & innovation
Publication Date: April 7, 2020 

Description: 
The case delineates the journey of L.V. Prasad Eye Institute (LVPEI), which evolved to become the biggest rural eyecare network, and it is amongst the most well-known eyecare providers in the world. Established in the year 1987 in the city of Hyderabad, India, LVPEI had been known internationally for its quality of eye care. As part of its vision, it treats half of its patients free of cost by adopting the cross-subsidization model. It developed the unique 'Pyramid Model' to serve the last mile population. The subject of Strategy and Innovation is riddled with paradoxes. A paradox is typically a pair of opposites, that have to be creatively reconciled, ensuring that both the opposites are simultaneously true. The case is set in the year 2018, and the key highlight of the case is to showcase how LVPEI has reconciled the hierarchy of paradoxes, i.e., strategy paradoxes, and innovation paradoxes during its 30 years journey and achieved excellence in eye care. The vital question of how LVPEI can sustain continued innovative excellence has emerged now. The senior management of LVPEI has to chart their way forward for the coming 30 years, reconciling the hierarchy of paradoxes. These paradoxes are elusively described in the case. Students would need to identify the paradoxes and think through LVPEI's journey ahead by reconciling them.

Learning objective:
This case is ideal for modules on strategy, entrepreneurship, innovative business models, innovation in health care, leadership, and strategic thinking for both MBA and executive MBA participants. Specific objectives of the case are: To understand the strategic and innovation paradoxes; How to foster innovation in an organization; Discuss an innovative Business model (cross-subsidization) in healthcare; Staying true to the founder's core purpose in the face of leadership change.

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