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.

CasesBang, Nupur Pavan., Ramachandran, Kavil. "Dodla's Dilemma", Emerald Publishing Limited, Harvard Publishing, 2018Thomas Schmidheiny Centre for Family EnterpriseRead Description >Close >D. Sunil Reddy established Dodla Dairy in the year 1995 at Nellore district of Andhra Pradesh, as a greenfield company. An industrial engineer from Mangalore University, Sunil started Dodla Dairy at the age of 27, with the seed money given by his father. He would often wonder if the brand ‘Dodla’ and the Company sustain beyond ‘Sunil Dodla’. While Sunil continues to put in efforts to increase capacity, expand and capture more market share, he keeps asking himself, “What next”, “How do I build a legacy?” If the company had to move to the next orbit, both in term of size (revenues, assets, market share) as well as professionalization, certain organizational changes were necessary. “What were these changes and who would do it?” How could Sunil better prepare himself and the company for the future? How would the company move from being a family owned enterprise to a professionally run, sustainable organization? Would one of his daughters bring about that freshness by joining the company and yet provide continuity in terms of the family values? Would it be an outsider? “Who after me?” thought Sunil. After two decades, a certain degree of fatigue was beginning to set in and he had been contemplating his own role in the company. The days when he was under pressure or had a bad day, he would think of selling off the company, take the money and live peacefully ever after. On the other days, he would think of building a sustainable organization and leaving a legacy!

CasesBhatnagar, Navneet., Ramachandran, Kavil. "Touchdown Footwear on Slippery Slope", Emerald Publishing Limited, Harvard Publishing, 2018Thomas Schmidheiny Centre for Family EnterpriseRead Description >Close >This case is based on the professionalization and governance challenges faced by Touchdown Footwear Limited (TFL) – an Indian mid-sized footwear manufacturing family business. It was setup in1965 by three brothers, Ramnath, Krishna and Ganesh Pai who had inherited their father’s rubber trading business. Initially, TFL made flip flop slippers and catered to the local market. Over the years, TFL had a larger product portfolio, and by 2013, they had a pan-India presence with some exports to African markets. In the early years, the three brothers managed all functions. As the next generation grew up, they started joining the firm and took up different roles often based on business exigencies. By 2013, TFL had a turnover of 6.23 INR, but lacked a clear strategy and professional management. In the absence of appropriate structure, systems and processes, decision-making was ad-hoc. Inefficiencies and wastages were evident all across, and working capital was under severe strain. The firm suffered from governance deficit at both family and business levels. Lack of clear policies and processes delayed many crucial decisions. Earlier attempts to professionalize the business failed to achieve the desired results as family members neither had clear policies nor could change their mindset. Besides, there were questions about the level of commitment and discipline of the next generation. Vivek, the case protagonist, who managed TFL’s finances, realized the need for a transitional change on multiple fronts to sustain the business but was unclear about roadmap.

CasesRamachandran, Kavil., Bhatnagar, Navneet. "Aurobindo Pharma Gearing Up for the Future", SAGE PUBLISHING, 2018Thomas Schmidheiny Centre for Family EnterpriseRead Description >Close >The Chairman and co-founder of the Hyderabad, India-based family-owned pharmaceutical company Aurobindo Pharma Limited (APL), P. V. Ramaprasad Reddy is reminiscing on his business growth journey. In 1986, along with a close friend, K. Nithyananda Reddy (no relation), and a few other associates, he started a small semisynthetic penicillin manufacturing unit. Since then the business had grown both organically and through strategic acquisitions. By 2011, APL was present in more than 125 countries. It had more than 500 drugs and intermediates spanning multiple therapeutic areas. As the business grew in size, scale, and scope so did its complexities, which demanded it adopt systematic processes, policies, and procedures. APL had adopted best practices in all functional areas and cultivated a culture of quality, to meet its objective to grow the business in the more demanding and developed markets of the USA and Europe. However, Ramaprasad pondered the future, specifically if APL was to continue to grow it had to further transform itself by professionalizing governance. Ramaprasad and Nithyananda were good friends and had effective control over APL. However, they were growing old due to which APL faced a leadership succession challenge. There was limited choice within the family and the next generation members were not prepared to take leadership positions in the company. The co-founders faced the dilemma of whether to groom someone within the family or to appoint a non-family professional at the helm.

CasesKannan, Srikanth; Shah, Geetika. "Ashok Leyland (A): Reaching For the Stars - Embarking on a New Vision and Strategy", 2018Centre for Learning and Management PracticeRead Description >Close >Discipline: Strategy
Industry: Automotive
Length: 14p
Subjects covered: Growth, Turnaround strategies, Acquisitions, Vision, Execution, Strategy, Implementing strategy
Publication Date: July 25, 2018
 
Description: 
This case documents the history of Ashok Leyland (AL), the second largest commercial vehicle manufacturer in India, and captures its growth and journey up to 2007, when the company adopted its new vision of more than doubling in size in a fairly mature industry. The challenge that the case poses to students is to understand how the firm, widely regarded as a small player globally and as a regional one even within India, could fulfill this ambitious vision.

Learning objective:
To examine the challenges in managing an aggressive vision for growth.

CasesKannan, Srikanth; Shah, Geetika. "Ashok Leyland (B): Shattered Dreams - Transformation For Survival", 2018Centre for Learning and Management PracticeRead Description >Close >Discipline: Strategy
Industry: Automotive
Length: 14p
Subjects covered: Growth, Turnaround strategies, Acquisitions, Vision, Execution, Strategy, Implementing strategy
Publication Date: July 25, 2018
 
Description: 
The second part of this two-part case examines the actions that Ashok Leyland (AL) took to achieve its aggressive growth plan and the consequences it faced when there was an abrupt negative demand shock. The case describes the challenge before AL's management when faced with bankruptcy, and invites readers to consider how this once-proud company could be transformed and led towards profitability and growth.

Learning objective:
  1. To illustrate how a firm's performance and survival is impacted in a recessionary environment with declining industry factors.
  2. To evaluate business turnaround and recovery strategies available to firms operating in challenging economic conditions.
  3. To discuss the challenges in implementing and adjusting to tough strategies that would eventually take the firm on a path of recovery.


CasesKannan, Srikanth; Shah, Geetika. "Ashok Leyland: Shattered Dreams - Transformation For Survival (Combined Version)", 2018Centre for Learning and Management PracticeRead Description >Close >Discipline: Strategy
Industry: Automotive
Length: 14p
Subjects covered: Growth, Turnaround strategies, Acquisitions, Vision, Execution, Strategy, Implementing strategy
Publication Date: July 25, 2018
 
Description: 
Case A & B (ISB113 & ISB115) have also been made available in a combined version.

Learning objective:
  1. To examine the challenges in managing an aggressive vision for growth.
  2. To illustrate how a firm's performance and survival is impacted in a recessionary environment with declining industry factors.
  3. To evaluate business turnaround and recovery strategies available to firms operating in challenging economic conditions.
  4. To discuss the challenges in implementing and adjusting to tough strategies that would eventually take the firm on a path of recovery.


CasesD.V.R. Seshadri; K. Sasidhar. "DHAN Foundation: Delivering Healthcare to the Village Doorstep - An Innovative Approach (A)", 2018Centre for Learning and Management PracticeRead Description >Close >Discipline: Strategy
Industry: Healthcare
Length: 9p
Subjects covered: Reverse innovation, Service innovation, Innovation, Engineering, Strategy
Publication Date: July 24, 2018
 
Description: 
DHAN Foundation, based in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu, was a non-government organization with a difference. It was neither a philanthropic organization nor a service organization but a development organization focused on grassroots development aided by professional management. This series of cases focuses on DHAN's journey in the realm of healthcare, tracing the genesis and evolution of its community health efforts, particularly during the first decade of its existence (1997 to 2007), and describing the challenges the Foundation faced along the way and its responses to those challenges. Case A describes the story of an unusual project undertaken by DHAN and several partners to take state-of-the-art medical diagnostic services to the doorsteps of villagers in a remote part of Tamil Nadu. The project was a collaborative effort involving Philips, a leader in electronics, healthcare and lighting; Apollo Hospitals, a major corporate hospital chain in India; Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), a high technology research center; and DHAN, a key player in the development sector. The project, anchored by Philips, came to an abrupt halt at the end of 2006 when Philips announced its withdrawal from the venture as the volumes it had anticipated had not materialized and the high overheads associated with the project were proving to be uneconomical. Apollo, also disappointed that it had not reaped the expected benefits from the project, followed suit. With these key collaborators opting out, the technology support of ISRO had little relevance. M. P. Vasimalai (Vasi), the Executive Director of DHAN, reeling from the unexpected termination of an important project that would benefit the community, was faced with a dilemma: Should he follow the lead of Philips and Apollo and abandon the project or find some way to take it forward?

Learning objective:
Delineating the difference between innovation in designing new products and services as against innovation in creating new delivery systems for those products and services. Highlighting the far-reaching impact of the latter type of innovations on providing equitable access to services in general and to essential services like healthcare in particular, to large rural masses, whose paying capacity is much lower than the standard market rates. Driving home the power of frugal engineering and cross-disciplinary innovations in achieving cost reduction and large volumes of service.

CasesD.V.R. Seshadri; K. Sasidhar. "DHAN Foundation: Delivering Healthcare to the Village Doorstep - An Innovative Approach (B)", 2018Centre for Learning and Management PracticeRead Description >Close >Discipline: Strategy
Industry: Healthcare
Length: 7p
Subjects covered: Reverse innovation, Service innovation, Innovation, Engineering, Strategy
Publication Date: July 24, 2018
 
Description: 
DHAN Foundation, based in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu, was a non-government organization with a difference. It was neither a philanthropic organization nor a service organization but a development organization focused on grassroots development aided by professional management. This series of cases focuses on DHAN's journey in the realm of healthcare, tracing the genesis and evolution of its community health efforts, particularly during the first decade of its existence (1997 to 2007), and describing the challenges the Foundation faced along the way and its responses to those challenges. Case B takes off where Case A leaves Vasi, and describes his decision to set up a secondary care hospital at Theni, Tamil Nadu, following the exit of Philips and Apollo Hospitals from the DISHA project. The case traces the fundraising and project management challenges DHAN faced along the way and its response to those challenges.

Learning objective:
Delineating the difference between innovation in designing new products and services as against innovation in creating new delivery systems for those products and services. Highlighting the far-reaching impact of the latter type of innovations on providing equitable access to services in general and to essential services like healthcare in particular, to large rural masses, whose paying capacity is much lower than the standard market rates. Driving home the power of frugal engineering and cross-disciplinary innovations in achieving cost reduction and large volumes of service.

CasesD.V.R. Seshadri; K. Sasidhar. "DHAN Foundation: Delivering Healthcare to the Village Doorstep - A Holistic Healthcare Model (C)", 2018Centre for Learning and Management PracticeRead Description >Close >Discipline: Strategy
Industry: Healthcare
Length: 7p
Subjects covered: Reverse innovation, Service innovation, Innovation, Engineering, Strategy
Publication Date: July 24, 2018
 
Description: 
DHAN Foundation, based in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu, was a non-government organization with a difference. It was neither a philanthropic organization nor a service organization but a development organization focused on grassroots development aided by professional management. This series of cases focuses on DHAN's journey in the realm of healthcare, tracing the genesis and evolution of its community health efforts, particularly during the first decade of its existence (1997 to 2007), and describing the challenges the Foundation faced along the way and its responses to those challenges. Set in 2007, this case seeks to synthesize the decade-long experience of DHAN in the realm of healthcare. M. P. Vasimalai (Vasi), DHAN's Executive Director, is tasked with making an important presentation to the Prime Minister and a team of government officials. Obviously, the good work of DHAN in this arena had not gone unnoticed. In preparing his presentation, Vasi must journey through DHAN's experience and the dilemma it is grappling with: whether to continue its healthcare interventions on a project-by-project basis or adopt a holistic healthcare model, bringing together its multiple and diffused healthcare-related initiatives under a common canopy for ease of administration and to derive the benefits of synergy.

Learning objective:
Creating a nuanced and insightful appreciation of the differences between viewing healthcare as a commercial service provided by professional organizations and as a public service that is required to be provided to all the needy at affordable rates, as well as the corresponding economic and social implications. Bringing out the imperative need for evolving holistic healthcare models going beyond the current emphasis on high-cost curative care. Exploring the value and relevance of the strategy of emergence during times of increasing uncertainty and growing complexity.

CasesBhatnagar, Navneet., Ramachandran, Kavil., Calabro, Andrea. "Merck, Darmstadt: Sustaining Legacy Beyond 350 Years", 2018Thomas Schmidheiny Centre for Family EnterpriseRead Description >Close >The oldest pharmaceutical and chemical company in the world, Merck was founded in 1668. Still run as a business partnership with the shareholder community of 100 family members, Merck was criticized for complexity in the functioning of its 70 divisions and international growth added cost to the corporation[1]. Due to complex management structures that caused a drain on the company’s financial resources, Merck decided to streamline its governance structures and incorporate itself as an Association limited by shares, floating 25% of its capital in stock exchange. The case studies the Merck Family, their involvement in business, the various practices they have established for a smooth running. While the company has launched its “Fit for 2018” campaign to streamline processes and improve productivity and profitability, the company faces a number of challenges in execution.

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