Costco Wholesale Corporation

Assignment: International Finance & Accounting Individual Final Project

Topic: Costco Wholesale Corporation

Must have in the paper:

 Costco is a multinational company in an industry where foreign operations and foreign currency risk exposure play a significant role in the companies’ core business and their financial performance. Explain the rationale of your selection (Costco).
 What geographic areas other than their home country does the company conduct business? What percentage of sales revenue is generated from operations in these foreign markets respectively? How did the distribution change/evolve in the past 3-5 years?
 Pick three foreign markets that generates most sales revenues for the company, and present the fluctuation of the exchange rate in the past three years (must with monthly data and graphs).
 Estimate the magnitude of impact of the exchange rate fluctuations on the company’s sales revenue in the past three years (must show your calculation). See if you could find information in the company’s annual reports to confirm or adjust your estimate.
 How does the company manage foreign currency transaction (and translation) risk?
 Which method does the company use to translate foreign currency financial statements? How do you know? What are the translation adjustment amounts in the past three years?

Compare your selected company to 3-5 of its industry peers (Such as Walmart, Superstore, IGA), comment on the following:

 How does the weight, diversity and location of foreign operations compare to its peers? Why do you think the company made the decision to operate in the locales chosen?
 How does the company’s risk management strategy compare to its peers? What are the similarities and differences in managing their foreign currency exposure?
 Is the company’s translation method consistent with its industry peers? If not, did the company disclose the reason why it uses the method as chosen?

 Based on all above, provide your evaluation of the company’s risk management strategies and how effectively the strategies were executed as reflected in the financial results in the company’s past three years.

The written report should use the following format:
• A title page
• Table of Contents (1 page)
• Executive summary (1 page)
• Main body of the paper (5 pages)
• Tables and graphs, if any
• References (must have minimum 3 citations in a pages)

Important notes: Do not just simply just answer each questions. Write everything down smoothly as a paper format. E.g like u r writing an annual report.

Use APA style with footnote. See “Citation Guideline”. Single space, paper size 8.5″ x 11″, Times New Roman, 12 font, 1″ margins on all sides.
Failure to meet the all of the above requirements will result in a minimum of 10% points deducted.

You must use academic resources to prove your point. Google scholar is suggested. Do not use any A.I writing tools, such as, Chatgpt, etc.

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Starbucks’ International Expansion

Starbucks’ International Expansion

Starbucks intended to extend its market to an international market. This would show that it had increased sales of its products, with an increased realization of profit. Its growth, when evaluated, can be considered positive. Most of its sales on an international basis were based on the joint venture, and specifically, its major expansion was in Japan. Establishing a joint venture needs analysis as it does not lead to maximizing sales. For instance, it puts Starbucks in a stance that is not firm, as the business has no monopoly. This is because the company employs cannibalism for monopoly, which cannot be done when the company is in a joint venture. Thus, the company resulted in small equity interest and fewer profits at the end. For example, the company received payment for a percentage of sales but not profits, as in the case of Japan. The company should ensure that it joins companies that can accept having a share of the profits made, as this is amount to a partnership. There should be incentives to have the company stand on its own as a monopoly in international countries.

Starbucks International should have its sales in France. This is because it has no international operations and partnerships in France. The company has the largest ownership in the UK, whose per-capita consumption is lower than France’s (658 in France and 424 in the UK). Out-of-home consumption in France is also high (150). Retail coffee consumption is also very high there, and the company should thus have its markets there, as the major profitable areas in its enterprises are out-of-home coffee.

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The Case of Samsung Performance

The Case of Samsung Performance

Samsung is one of the biggest technological companies in the world producing some of the best electronics in the world. However, being the best in the market does not mean that the company does not face its share of challenges. One of the biggest challenges affecting the company’s stability regarding the share market, profitability, and the brand name is the issue of Galaxy Note 7 batteries bursting into flames (Shin, & Kim 2015, 316). Repair of the damages caused by the explosion of the Galaxy Note 7 batteries was an uphill for the company. The recall and halting production of the devices cost the company about US$ 5 billion, but the biggest blow was the brand image and reputation of the company in the international market (Burgess 2017)

 Quality test and assurance of the company’s gadgets was put into perspective, which had a significant impact on the company’s overall brand. Failure to handle the problem effectively would affect Samsung’s ability to compete effectively with its archrivals (Burgess 2017). The ability of the company to accomplish big tasks within the shortest time possible predisposes the company to quality assurance flaws. In the third quarter of 2016, the company recorded a 30% slump in profits citing the recall of the Galaxy Note 7 as one of the factors behind the slump. The profit fell by KRW 2.19 trillion to KRW 5.20 trillion one of the biggest declines since the company’s rise as a revered smartphone producer in 2010 (Burgess 2017).

However, the external and internal environmental factors have enabled the company to remain on an upward trajectory despite the Note 7 debacle. In 2016, Samsung recorded annual revenue of KRW 201.87 trillion and operated profits of KRW 29.24 trillion in the face of recall of the Galaxy Note 7 (Trusted Reviews 2017). The positive gains are due to the strategies laid down by the company in its operations to ensure profitability and to deal with future uncertainties.

The Microenvironment Analysis

The internal environment of Samsung has been one of the major factors behind its success. Most of the internal factors have acted as a strength for the company in the light of competitiveness.


Innovation. Innovativeness has been one of the major reasons that have given Samsung a competitive advantage over its competitors. The company has diversified its production to fit in different markets with different mobile devices (Shin, & Kim 2015, 315). The innovativeness of the company enabled it to replace the discontinuation of the Galaxy Note 7 with the flagship of other devices such as the Galaxy S 7 and the Galaxy edge (Bhushan 2016, p. 144). The Note 7 debacle would have provided Samsung’s competitors with a good opportunity to pin it down; however, its innovativeness ensured that the company remains abreast in the smartphone market. Moreover, innovativeness gave the company the confidence to withdraw production of the Galaxy Note 7 with the view that it will produce other devices with the capacity of winning consumers’ confidence (Choe 2012). Moreover, the company creates excitement among its customer’s by producing new quality devices in a quick succession thus winning the trust and the confidence of its competitors (Shin, & Kim 2015, p. 317).

Superior brand name. Innovativeness has enabled Samsung to acquire a strong brand that smartphone enthusiasts like to associate with. The strong brand name has created customer loyalty. Customer loyalty has enabled the company to continue performing exceptionally in times of hardship in times of success (Shin, & Kim 2015, p. 316) The Note & debacle did not affect consumer’s attitude towards Samsung’s devices since they have confidence in the products.

Strong strategy. The innovativeness strategy has enabled the company to deal with the shortcomings in its operation effectively. The better, fast, cheaper strategy has helped Samsung to produce some of the best devices that have the capacity to compete effectively with products from other competitors (Choe 2012). The strategy has enabled to maintain a significant market share in the light of fierce competition. Samsung controls 21.4% of the global market share (Bhushan 2016, p. 144). Samsung has also maintained a close and healthy relationship with its supply. Moreover, the company has a strong marketing strategy that endears its products to the consumers. Good relationships with the retailers also give Samsung an upper hand in access markets in different parts of the country.


Production of new devices in quick succession makes the customers forget the devices quickly. That makes some of the devices to lose value quickly. The marketing strategy used by the company is not as strong as the one used by Apple. Moreover, the Asian competitors such as Huawei and Xiomi are fast catching up with Samsung smartphone devices not only in the Asian market but also in the global market. Huawei has gained a 48% while Xiomi has gained 29.4% of the Asian market (Zhang 2017). The dominant market for Samsung devices, which is the U.S. and Europe, has been on a downward trajectory for Samsung devices while on an upward trajectory for Apple at 34.9%.


One of the opportunities that pose a bright future for the company is opening up new markets in the developing countries. Additionally, the online market allows for the sale of products globally, expanding the company’s market reach. New technology offers Samsung with an opportunity to increase its market share through the production of devices that have the capacity. Moreover, the world is experiencing a growth in the middle class, which forms an important part of the Samsung’s market.


The Note 7 debacle is one of the threats that company faces in the global market since it hurt its reputation. Apple dominance in the production of smartphones is one of the challenges that Samsung has been experiencing globally. Moreover, new companies such as Samsung and Xiaomi have become a challenge to the success of Samsung by depriving the company part of its Asian share market. Penetration into markets already dominated by Apple has become a challenge for Samsung since customers view Apple products being superior in comparison to the Samsung’s devices.

External- Environment Analysis

The political environment has been stable for efficient operation of the Samsung across the globe. However, some market policies have been trying to affect its operations in certain markets, such as Germany (Shin, Kim 2015, p. 316). On the other hand, the economic environment has been conducive for the company. The company has gained global access to the market. Moreover, the company has been socially responsive in the economies it operates in by creating chances of employment and providing social assistance to the needy. Additionally, Samsung has found itself on a legal tussle for copying Apple’s patent rights. Imitation of the patent rights affected the company’s brand name.

Product differentiation remains a threat to the success of Samsung. The use of the Android operating system poses a threat since new software can change the taste and preferences of the public. The threat of substitutes does not pose a major threat to the success of Samsung since it is renowned for its innovations. The bargaining power of customers is high given the high number of electronic devices in the market.

Strategies to Use

The Note 7 debacle is one of the biggest challenges that Samsung has ever faced despite having a strong brand name. The debacle accentuates the need for the company to increase its quality assurance to produce flawless products. Moreover, the company needs to limit production of devices in quick succession to enable enough time to evaluate the gadgets’ success in the market. Moreover, Samsung should produce user-friendly devices that are simple, reliable, and effective to use. 


Bhushan, A 2016, A comparative analysis of consumer behavior of Nokia and Samsung mobile users, The Journal of Internet Banking and Commerce, vol. 7, no. 6, pp. 140-144.

Burgess, M 2017, Samsung blames drop in profits on Galaxy Note 7 problems. Available at: [Accessed 9 Apr. 2017].

Choe, S. 2012. The Samsung strategy, better, faster, and cheaper. Available at the-Samsung-strategy-Better-faster-cheaper. [Accessed 9 Apr. 2017].

Rodrigo, 2012, Analysis of Samsung marketing and brand strategies. The WritePass Journal. Available at [Accessed 9 Apr. 2017].

Shin, WS, and Kim, C 2015, Samsung’s journey to excellence in quality, International Journal of Quality and Service Sciences, vol. 7, no2/3, pp.312-320.

Trusted Reviews 2017, Galaxy Note 7 fail: Samsung reveals true impact of exploding phones. Available at: [Accessed 9 Apr. 2017].

Zhang, Y 2017, “Xiaomi Races to gain larger slice of global smartphone cake – Global Times.” Available at: [Accessed 9 Apr. 2017].

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Strategy Recommendations for Regions Bank

Strategy Recommendations for Regions Bank

The current trends in financial services in many parts of the world depend on digital technology. In America, more than 35% of financial institutions consolidate the digital system in providing financial services. The target is expected to increase by the year 2020 due to the changing customers’ demands from the traditional banking system. With the recent boom of the new technology, more individuals have access to the internet through their smart devices. Moreover, the majority of consumers today can manage their finances, conduct daily banking transaction, and interact with their bankers without necessarily going to the bank premises. Nonetheless, the drive to digital opportunity challenges many of the banking management because they do not have effective strategies to meet demands of their customers (Gopalakrishnan & Rachh, 2013). Regions Bank is one of the financial institutions that implemented the digital financial system but fails to run it effectively to meet the urgent need of all its customers. The bank does not have live chatting system in its customer’s care services.

Lack of the live chat system is the major contest to the bank because they are not able to respond effectively to current and target customers. Implementing a live chat in its digital banking system will be of great advantages to the bank since its strength and opportunity outweighs it weaknesses. The major opportunity for the live chat system is that most of the bank’s customers are between 20-35years old. This group spent most of its time on social media chatting live and socializing with other parties (Stewart, Oliver, Cravens, & Oishi 2017). Integrating live chat in the banking system will inspire such group to keep on investing and transacting more in Regions Bank. In the coming five years, the numbers of customers are likely to double since the majority of the college students embrace live interaction hence they can easily mobilize other to join the bank due to its innovative idea. Also, through live chats, the bank can advertise available services and promptly handle customers’ inquiries. Some of the internal strength of the live chat is that the bank already has 24/7 customer care services which will only need some modification to integrate with the live chat. Telephone cost charges are much higher compared to the cost of live chat on the internet. Thus, live chat is the best alternative to engaging customer’s queries since it is cost effective. The bank already has mobile apps and mobile web hence it will not incur a lot of cost in campaigns for a live chat program. The major weakness of the system are; lack of sufficient employees to respond to all customer inquiries of the customers 24/7, and some customers may raise issues that intimidate the bank or the other customers in the live chat. 

Young generation who account for over 50% of all the regions bank customers has never experienced the life without social media. Their relationship with financial institutions needs modern technology services. The banking industry is highly competitive and a technology-driven enterprise. Hence, there is an urgent need for integrating live chat in customer services of Regions Bank to enable the financial institution remains competitive in the industry. In fact, the bank should understand preference and choice of customers of different age groups. For instance, customers’ below the age of 25 are so much in need of information about the bank. Therefore, live chat is the only way that it can make them fulfills their inquiries on the bio-data of the bank. According to Stewart, Oliver, Cravens & Oishi (2017), the majority of young generation prefer online banking system. Moreover, about 70% use online banking; while 44% send money using digital devices. In addition, 39% of bank customers use mobile deposit system to deposit money. Thus, these groups urgently need customer service that can respond to their question instantly as they are using online mobile services.

            The first thing to do before implementation of the live chat program is setting up goals and ensuring there are enough resources for the action plan. After setting goals, establishing who will own the channel follows. For the case of the Regions Bank, live chat can be run by customer services, or the technology service department. The chosen vendor of the channel will be fully hosted by Live Guide chat solutions so as to minimize intensive technical expertise. Another initiative is to find a way to measure success. Live Guide will provide the channel owner with the full report of multiple variables and how the customers are interacting as a measure of the success of the system. Choosing the operators is another key thing in implementation. Operators can include staff from other departments such as sales department, finance department among others. Finding a strategic way of defining different department of the bank during the chat is also necessary, it reduces confusion of the prospective customers. The campaign to involve customers in the live chat is necessary while launching the live chat. The campaign involves finding an appropriate message that would inspire the customer to embrace the live chat system in the Regions Bank. The campaign creates awareness to the customers about the live chat system. The total budget for the live chat program is $ 20 million, which will be used to pay the domain host, hire information technology expertise, networking, establishing a section of live chat, and increasing operators of the live chat in every department.

            Implementing live chat in the online services of Regions Bank will boost the profit of the bank by cutting the cost and boosting satisfaction of the customers. Wells Fargo increased its approval rate to the majority of its customers when it launched live chat in 2012. Aviva international insurance company saved more than $ 1.6 million dollars by shifting 25% of its customer contacts by telephone and email to live chat (Turban, Strauss & Lai, 2016). To ensure that implementation of live chat program is successful in Regions Bank a brief survey is necessary before launching the program. Primary and secondary data on the customers’ trends, preference, and demographic information is vital in the survey. Interview and questioners will be appropriate in collecting information. Financial feasibility analysis of the bank is a requirement to note if the bank has enough resources to fund the program.


Gopalakrishnan, K., & Rachh, A. (2013). Online banking security alertness amongst the youth. Asian Journal of Research in Banking and Finance, 3(9), 111.

Stewart, J. S., Oliver, E. G., Cravens, K. S., & Oishi, S. (2017). Managing millennial: Embracing generational differences. Business Horizons, 60(1), 45-54.

Turban, E., Strauss, J., & Lai, L. (2016). Social Customer Service and CRM. In Social Commerce (pp. 155-178). Springer International Publishing.

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Online Betting

Online Betting

Online betting, just as the term suggests is an online form of gaming. Online can refer to a series of online gambling from live matches to other forms such as the lottery, spin the wheel, and other kinds of gambling. It is an addictive sport and has effects on a high population of the people, and thus there have been calls for regulation of online betting in many countries all over the world. This form of gambling has been regulated in many nations, in the United Kingdom, online gambling is legal, although it holds some straightforward laws that govern and regulate it. Online gambling is regulated by the Gambling Commission, which is required to report to the government (“UK gambling Jurisdiction,” 2017). There is a need for gambling to be regulated.

There are many negative side effects to online gambling. However, there are also many parties, which benefit from t, most notably the gambling companies and the government. Some people describe online gambling as a form of entertainment that people do of their free will with no social harm intended, but this begs the question as to why the government put its focus on it in the first place (Grinols, 2010). Therefore, it is important to understand what offering two lottery operators a chance to operate will mean to the customers, the nation, and the people who are directly or indirectly involved.

The government decided to allow the two lottery sites to operate for several reasons and excuses surfacing. However, no matter how much people try to deny it, gambling is an area that contains a lot of money that could be used to grow a country. Online gambling has only risen over the past few years, and no matter how much the government tries to shut these sites, there are new sites reappearing. In some states, the government has enacted bans on gambling which have only resulted to betting sites offering instant online wagers on the live sports (Williams & Stensholt, 2016). This shows that it is hard to eradicate gambling completely and thus the government is trying to control and regulate it.

Some of the ethical issues in play are that the government may not have given these two operators a chance because they feel it is the right thing to do, but because gambling will also offer the government a means to make money. The government is supposed to look after the interests of people. People who win in these games will feel like they should be legalized while the families, who suffer because a member used up all the money in gambling, will feel that the system should limit gambling. The government’s decision should not be biased by what benefits them the most, but rather, on what serves the people better. Gambling is addictive and can cause a lot of hardships to those who are involved. In some country, for instance, Britain, gambling plays an important role, and it is a great contributor to the economy (Thorpe, 2016). Therefore, the government may have simply made this decision with the hope that it will also be a key contributor to Singapore’s economy.

The Minister for Social and Family Development in Singapore, Tan Chuan-Jin argued that the government allowed these two operators to operate their gambling business because it was a better way of regulating it. His argument was that if they banned online gambling, people would put up more betting sites, which the government might take longer to shut down (Abdullah, 2016). This argument shows that he understands that gambling should be regulated and thus his argument is that it should be regulated but not eradicated. Online gambling offers a platform for both good and bad; some people take it, as a business while there are others who see it as a sport. However, it should be regulated to ensure that people do not engage in inappropriate behaviour in their desire to bet or win.

There is a great number of people who has regard to online gambling or any other form of gambling with a lot of suspicions because they feel like there is something morally wrong with it (Wolff, 1905). However, people try to justify their gambling by arguing that they have responsibility for their money and they can spend it how they want to. Gambling can be intriguing or dangerous it only depends whether the person involved is on the winning or the losing side. The government’s action of allowing two lottery operators is not a morally wrong thing to do because they are doing it because it will offer fruits, however, it will mostly have negative effects on the people.

The government enacted this because they know that gambling can positively contribute to the country’s economy and because it is a growing industry. Online betting has developed over the past few years in many nations in the world, and there are no signs of it ending. The argument by the Minister that it is almost impossible to eradicate online betting is a factual argument. This is because the internet can be used to do a lot of things, which involves bringing new betting sites when the old ones are closed, and the government will only find itself chasing after a shadow they cannot catch. Therefore, offering these operators a chance can be crucial in ensuring the government comes up with ways to limit gambling and control it.


On the other hand, the government issued something that would severely affect the lives of many people. Betting can be a vice to a lot of people; there will be cases of people getting addicted to betting to the extent that they will forego meals to bet that money or to avoid paying rent or not even go back to their homes after they have used up all their money on betting. The government’s decision will probably benefit the government more while doing more damage than good to the people. This is because the government will get its share from the taxes and the betting company will get its share from the people. Ultimately, the people will only offer and may not get back. The article by Huiwen raised the concerns aired by social workers and consumers about this decision to offer permission to these lottery companies. This argument is supported by a photographer, Alan Lee who argues that online betting services could offer an entertaining intrigue and thus make more people bet and thus addicting them (Huiwen, 2016). This addiction can affect a lot of youths while increasing the rate of gambling which may have dire consequences. On the other hand, the article by Zhaki tries to explain the reasoning behind the decision to allow these lottery operators to operate. It shows the argument that this is the only safe way to regulate online gambling. Ultimately, both of these articles show that online betting would prove a serious threat to moral and ethical ways of lives that people have enjoyed over the years.


Abdullah, Z. (2016, October 7). Regulated online betting safer for users: Minister. The Straight Times. Retrieved from

Grinols, E. L. (2010, July 29). Too many negative side effects of online gambling. The New York Times. Retrieved from:

Huiwen, N. (2016, September 15). Online betting: Fear of rise in addiction. The Straight Times. Retrieved from:

Thorpe, D. (2016, April 19). How the UK gambling industry has impacted the economy. Retrieved from

UK gambling jurisdiction and regulations. (2017). Retrieved from

Williams, P., & Stensholt, J. (2016, April 28). Government bans online in-play betting on sports dealing a blow to Tom Warehouse. The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved from:

Wolff, J. (1905, September 14). The ethics of gambling. International Journal of Ethics, 15(2), 135-148.

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Market Analysis and Strategic Plan for HCO’s Sports Medicine Program

Market Analysis and Strategic Plan for HCO’s Sports Medicine Program

The dynamics in the society affects the fortunes of a business entity significantly. Both internal and external factors of a business play a fundamental role in the success or failure of business. Marketing analysis and strategic plan are vital to enhancing the success of business in all seasons. According to Lynn (2011), it is important for a business to define its target market in a bid to position itself effectively in the market. This paper will develop a market analysis and strategic plan for HCO’s Sports Medicine Program in a bid to evaluate the possible success of the business.

Market Analysis and Strategic Plan for HCO’s Sports Medicine Program

Through internal and external environmental analysis, different aspects were unearthed that have a significant impact on the future of Orthopedic Services at St. David’s Round Rock Medical Center (Aging Services Council of Central Taxes, 2013). Demographic trends are one of the areas of concern to the future of orthopedic services in Round Rock area. The aging population in the area is rising significantly presenting a bright future for the St. David’s Medical Center. Most of the senior age population is affected by musculoskeletal problems that call for orthopedic care. In 2010, Round Rock had the debauched emergent ‘senior’ populace (age 55-64) in Texas and the second fastest growing aging population in the US (Aging Services Council of Central Taxes, 2013). Since 2010 the aging population has grown significantly presenting a myriad of opportunities for the orthopedic services (Aging Services Council of Central Taxes, 2013). Round Rock accounts for 18 percent of the aged population in Texas. Despite most of the aging population being covered by both the Medicaid and Medicare insurance, most of the health facilities in Texas decline serving most of them due to problems in the disbursement of funds. However, the insured population in Texas has increased access to medical services than the uninsured. Therefore, the uninsured are put off by the high cost of services in medical facilities despite being in dire need of health care. Therefore, decreasing the cost of health services at St. David’s Medical Center will enhance the number of the uninsured population visiting the health facility.

 Moreover, Round Rock is marked with a high prevalence of chronic diseases among the elderly population. Most of the aged population is diagnosed with several medical conditions that require orthopedic and general health care services. More than 46% of the aged populations are suffering from arthritis and rheumatism, 23% are experiencing diabetes, 17% osteoporosis, 20% obesity, and weight issues and a significant number have degenerative joint diseases (Aging Services Council of Central Taxes, 2013). Additionally, the prevalence of young population between 18 and 39 years taking part in sporting activities has increased demand for orthopedic services as they try to recover from injuries and train on the best ways to avoid recurrence of the injuries. The demographic trends present an opportunity for the success of the business. Disparities in the distribution of wealth among the young and the elderly population is a worrying factor to the success of the business. Fast aging population presents an economic burden to the society since most of them do not have a reliable source of revenue.

St. David’s Medical Center has embraced new technology in providing health care service. The health facility has some of the best orthopedic devices for specialized surgical procedures such as knee, spine and hip implants. Moreover, the health facility has some of the best physicians specialized in offering a myriad of orthopedic services as per the needs of the patients. Modern technological gadgets do safeguard not only the patient’s safety but also improve the quality and efficiency of services (Shojania, 2011). The presence of quality facilities and shrewd and experienced physicians give the health facility a competitive advantage over its competitors. Additionally, the health facility observes professionalism and work ethics consistent with the health and safety regulations in an attempt to keep at bay health care-related legal suits.

Orthopedic services are vital for healthy living of the community regardless of whether someone is old or young. The elderly and athletes in the society are faced with several musculoskeletal injuries and diseases that put their health well-being at risk. There is a growing demand for sport medicine services in Round Rock as the rising number of the elderly population and athletes in need of techniques to heal and prevent future injuries. The sports medicine service line has a vital role to play in the future of the orthopedic service line at St. David’s Medical Center. The demand for services especially among the athletes presents a positive aspect about the success of the organization. However, some alternative strategies will need to be implemented in a bid to improve chances of success.

Alternative Strategies

According to Gluck et al., Strategy is the gateway to success in the world of business (1980).  One of the main factors that have contributed significantly to the decline of patients seeking orthopedic services in St. David’s Medical Center is the cost of services.  To start with, the health facility should adopt an adaptive strategic posture. The adaptive strategy will help the organization to effectively adapt to the changes in the market presented by specialized care for patients (Reeves,  Deimler, 2011) Vertical integration will be one of the adaptive strategic measures that the health facility should adopt in an attempt to increase customer flow. Moreover, the health facility should maintain diversification of services in both orthopedic and sport medicine services in a bid to expand the size of the market share. 

Modern orthopedic equipment should be purchased to enhance the performance of the health facility by keeping the existing customers and attracting new customers. Moreover, service differentiation will be vital in giving the organization a competitive advantage over its competitors in the market. One of the differentiation techniques the organization should adopt is a specialized treatment for the elderly and athletes coupled with free follow-up check-ups to ascertain their recovery process. That will offer a unique touch to the services offered by St. David’s Medical Center. In a bid to maintain and expand the market share, St. David’s Medical Center should adopt a defensive strategic posture. According to Yannopoulos, the defensive strategic posture helps an organization to retain its market share and prevent a new challenge by denying other firms access to its customer base (2011). The market for orthopedic services is limited, and there is need to defend the already existing customer base and lure new customers through aggressive pricing. Low pricing will help attract the uninsured patients who shun healthy services due to high charges. Therefore, cost leadership will be vital since quality services remain high and the cost of services goes down.


Aging Services Council of Central Taxes. (2013). A growing senior population in central Texas opportunities and needs. Retrieved from

Gluck, F. W., Kaufman, S. P., & Walleck, A. S. (1980). Strategic management for competitive advantage. Harvard business review, 58(4), 154-161.

Lynn, M. (2011). Segmenting and targeting your market: Strategies and limitations. The Scholarly Commons. 1-4

Reeves, M., & Deimler, M. (2011). Adaptability: The new competitive advantage (pp. 135-41). Harvard Business Review. 135-141

Shojania, K. G., Duncan, B. W., McDonald, K. M., Wachter, R. M., & Markowitz, A. J. (2001). Making health care safer: a critical analysis of patient safety practices. Evid Rep Technol Assess (Summ), 43(1), 668.

  Yannopoulos, P. (2011). Defensive and offensive strategies for market success. International Journal of Business and Social Science, 2(13).

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EBay Case Study

EBay Case Study

EBay is a multinational e-commerce specializing in auctioning and selling consumer commodities. Pierre Omidyar established eBay in 1995. The company headquarters is at in San Jose United States (Curchod & Neysen, 2009). The company started as an auctioneers’ site where the seller could post the item they need to sell then the buyer bid. The highest bidder gets a chance to acquire the commodity. The company grew vibrantly under the management of CEO Meg Whiteman. Whiteman made the company grow from a valuation of $5 million to $ 8 billion. Its employees also increased from thirty to thirty thousand in 10 years of his leadership. The company acquired PayPal in 2002 with $1.5 billion and Skype in 2005 with $2.6 billion (Castel-Branco, 2016). The company introduced “buy it now system” where the customer was to set fixed prices of their commodities. The system has grown vibrantly and taken most of the eBay sells. The main source of the revenue for eBay is the charges and commission from the sellers as well as the transaction charges from the PayPal. The company has many strength, weakness, opportunity, and threats that determine its status and future advancement.

The Strength the Company

  • Acquisition of PayPal to transact money between the buyers and the seller
  • Acquisition of Skype that promotes communication between buyers and sellers
  • Diversified sources of profit from eBay sell, PayPal and Skype.
  • The website is free for buyers hence ensure customers are always available.
  • The company does not buy goods to sell hence allow customers to direct deal with sellers thus having unlimited quantities of commodities for sale.


  • Skype unable to work well and generated little profit below the company expectation
  • PayPal customer constantly withdraws their money from their account hence little interest realized
  • The company exploits the customers and the buyer by charging them commission and transaction fee using PayPal
  • Many customers do not prefer auctioneers method of sale
  • The company does not have its commodity available for sale as required by customers; it only depends on sellers to post commodities for sale. Hence does not meet urgent needs of some of their customers


  • Advancement of technology, which leads to the invention of smartphones making e-commerce to flourish worldwide
  • The invention of E-wallet and mobile payment, which favors PayPal
  • Availability of more than 128 million active users of eBay ensure willing sellers and buyers are always available
  • Less technique of opening eBay and PayPal favors the company
  • Increased smartphone users promotes markets for its mobile apps


  • Competition from online marketers such as; On sale, classified 2000, and First Auction
  • Technology giants such as Samsung and Apple are launching offline money transfer method using smartphones which are a major threat to PayPal
  • The shift of customers’ demands on readily available good on platforms such as Amazon
  • Shareholder threatens to pull out their shares from the company 
  • Decrease number of sellers and auctioneers.

The competitive advantage of eBay at the end of the year 2013 was due to the invention of mobile commerce and mobile payment. In 2012 after the massive launch of smartphones eBay, contacted Silicon to produce various mobile apps sold through its platform. More than ninety million people downloaded eBay mobile apps by the middle of 2012. In 2013, mobile apps accounted for a transaction of more than $22 billion. Mobile payment has favored the growth of PayPal where it has able to raise its transaction, in 2013 more than 350 billion were transacted via the PayPal mobile payment. The expected transaction in 2017 is $720 billion (Castel-Branco, 2016). The company through its CEO Donahoe strategized in deemphasizing auctioning and favor in increasing fixed price sales, which were considered by majority customers. The company also an emphasis on operating as technology collaborates to small scale and large scale retailers. The company introduced $2.4 billion acquisition to GSI in the year 2011. The GSI dealt with marketing, e-commerce services provision and processing payment to the sellers. If the company aggressively invests in new technologies on e-commerce and PayPal, its returns will double in the coming three years. It will also be able to maintain competitive advantage compared to its close rivalry. The PayPal should increase the number of currency they are using in its transaction so that it can cover the larger market. By doing so, it will increase the number of countries that transact with eBay.


Castel-Branco, M. (2016). Carl Icahn pushes eBay to spin-off PayPal (Doctoral dissertation).

Curchod, C., & Neysen, N. (2009). Disentangling positive and negative externalities on two-       sided markets: the Ebay Case.

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Touchstone 2: Managing Organizational Conflict

It is difficult to know how to handle organizational conflict. When you hear “conflict,” you might think about people arguing and creating an unpleasant work environment. However, sometimes conflict can be healthy when recognizing disagreement and differences as symptoms of a deeper organizational problem that can be addressed. A degree of conflict is vital to group success to avoid groupthink and to generate more innovative ideas among group members, who may have diverse opinions and points of view.

Review the case study below and apply your learning to answer the questions for this assignment.

Touchstone 2: Managing Organizational Conflict

SCENARIO: An insurance company executive and her managers have been challenged by their company to increase the productivity of their 100 customer service associates. The associates are diverse in all respects, including cultural background and spoken languages. The executive observes associates mingling during work hours and is concerned they are underperforming. She makes a unilateral decision to have associates log their time on each call so they are more accountable for their time. Associates complain that this new tracking system takes time from their schedule, making them less productive. After a few months, morale and productivity are lower, and tensions are high due to the tracking system. The insurance executive hires you as an independent management consultant to analyze the situation and recommend solutions, including helping the stakeholders decide if the tracking system should remain in place. Note that it is not your job to make this decision but to facilitate an agreement supported by all or most of the organization.

ASSIGNMENT: Use the best practices for managing and moderating conflict in the workplace that you’ve learned in Unit 2 to address this scenario. The insurance executive has hired you as an independent management consultant to analyze the situation and recommend solutions, including whether the tracking system should remain in place.

To complete the assignment, download the response template and answer the following questions in 5-7 sentences each. You will return the completed template as your Touchstone submission.


  1. What decision-making approach will you recommend the executive take for achieving the best decision on keeping this tracking system in place and obtaining cooperation from the customer service associates? Why do you think this method is best? (See tutorial 2.3.3 “Building Consensus”).
  2. You recommend that the executive and managers meet with their customer service associates to better connect with them and create empathy as a key step toward resolving the conflict. What advice would you give to the executives and managers to facilitate such a meeting? What advice would you give to customer service associates? (See tutorials 1.3.1 “Listening”1.3.2 “Business Meetings”, and 2.3.2 “Managing Conflict”)
  3. To accommodate their customers, the company employs a number of native speakers of Spanish, Russian, and other languages. In your recommendation about this tracking system issue, how will you ensure the meeting feels inclusive and equitable to these staff members? (See tutorials 2.2.4 “Advantages and Challenges of Diversity and Inclusion”, and 2.2.5 “Strategies for Inclusive Communication.”)
  4. Can you identify how this organization’s conflict might result in improvements to its internal processes and productivity? Can you explain some possible benefits of such improvements to the larger organization? (See tutorials 2.3.2 “Managing Conflict” and 2.3.3 “Building Consensus”).

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Social Entrepreneurship

This is the Social Entrepreneurship participation assignment and the last participation assignment. You will find examples of three companies engaging in social entrepreneurship (as defined in the lecture). Name the three companies and the activity you believe is an example of social entrepreneurship. These must be for-profit firms, not non-profits! 

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ANL-301 Business Analytics Term Project (Spring 2023)

ANL-301 Business Analytics Term Project (Spring 2023)


In the term project, you will work in teams of up to three students. The team members will be assigned by the instructor randomly. Please go to People page on Canvas to learn your group members.

This assignment will provide you a learning experience of working in a team with random people. This will be a real-life experience to be expected when you graduate and start working – you do not get to choose who you work with. Please keep your mind open, as you may also make new friends with this project.

Working as a team, please keep the following in mind:

• Team members should meet to make sure the project moves with progress. • Before your FIRST meeting, all team members are expected to read the assignment and look

through the dataset. • Upon completion, team members will evaluate the contributions of each member to the group effort. The evaluations will be confidential.

You will apply what you have learned in this course to a real-world data problem. All teams will work on the same business case. The goal is to understand the problem domain and the data available to provide insight on analytical results. You will explore how best to use business analytics methods to transform data into business decisions and communicate of the results and insights from the analysis. You will use the techniques you learn in the following sections in the textbook:

• Chapter 1: Introduction • Chapter 2: Descriptive Statistics • Chapter 3: Data Visualization • Section 8.4: Using Regression Analysis for Forecasting • Section 10.3: Some Useful Excel Functions for Modeling

Other supporting resources are listed and linked on Canvas in the module “Project”.

You will prepare a short report (2-3 pages) to present the findings of your data analysis process and the conclusion. The report will include the tables and/or charts that you created in Excel. You will also submit the Excel file which includes your calculations, tables and/or charts.

The project will be evaluated based on two things: (i) the technical quality and significance of the work and (ii) the clarity and the quality of the report. Details can be found in the Rubric section.

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Cross-buying refers to customers buying additional products from the same firm – for example, when a customer starts a relationship with a bank, opens a savings account, and one year later opens a checking account. Financy, one of Germany’s largest financial services providers, would like to run a cross-sell campaign and incentivize customers who do not yet have a checking account to open one. Thereby, the firm must concentrate its

marketing efforts on customers who are more likely to cross-buy and open a checking account. Also, the firm wants to better understand customer behavior (Balance, Number of Products, Complaints) across different customer segments based on socio-demographics.


The file Cross-Buy.xlsx contains data on 1,000 customers of Financy. The dataset contains 16 variables that describe customer demographics, transactions, activities, and the firm’s marketing efforts. The variables are defined below.

1 Cross-buy Customer opened a checking account: 1 (yes), 0 (no) 2 Age Customer’s age in years 3 Gender Customer’s gender: 1 (male), 0 (female) 4 Marital Status Customer marital status 5 Occupation

6 Giro Mailing Received an email about opening a checking account: 1 (yes), 0 (no) 7 Direct Mailing Total number of mailing in the last year 8 Complaints Number of complaints in last year 9 Customer Tenure Number of months since customer onboarding 10 Desktop Logins Number of logins in the last 180 days 11 Mobile Logins Number of mobile sessions in the last 180 days 12 Number of Products Total number of products (accounts) owned by the customer 13 Balance Total balances of all savings accounts (€) 14 House Size Average number of households per building in the residential block 15 Purchase Power Average purchase power in the residential block 16 Share of New Houses Share of new buildings in the residential block


1. Understand the data: What are the data types (Quantitative, Categorical or Other) of each variable in this dataset? Clean and prepare your data for analysis. Define new variables, if necessary.

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2. Define four specific objectives of your analysis. The objectives can be defined based on what you want to do with data and what sparks your interest. Some examples can be:

o a business question to answer o to explore a relationship between some variables o to examine a variable’s distribution among different groups o to identify some interesting values o …

3. Apply appropriate business analytics techniques (sort, filter, conditional formatting, numerical summaries, crosstabulations, charts, regression, etc.) to explore the dataset based on your objectives. You have a lot of freedom to choose what to do, as long as you reach your objectives and restrict yourselves to exploratory techniques (rather than forecasting, simulation, or optimization approaches).

4. Present your analysis and findings in a report. Also, provide business actions/decisions for Financy based on your findings.

5. Submit your Excel file and your report (pdf or Word) on Canvas.


Component Superior

(90-100 points) Very Good

(75-90 points) Adequate

(50-75 points) Unsatisfactory (0-50 points)

Objectives 20%

Well-motivated, interesting, and insightful objectives

Objectives have two of the three qualities: well-motivated, interesting, and insightful

Objectives have one of the three qualities: well-motivated, interesting, and insightful

Objectives are overly simplistic, unrelated, or unmotivated

Analysis 40%

Accurate, appropriate, and advanced analysis

Analysis has two of the three qualities: accurate, appropriate, and advanced

Analysis has one of the three qualities: accurate, appropriate, and advanced

Choice of analysis is overly simplistic or incomplete

Conclusions and Business

Actions 20%

Relevant, insightful, and well-supported conclusions

Conclusions have two of the three qualities: relevant, insightful, and well-supported

Conclusions have one of the three qualities: relevant, insightful, and well-supported

Conclusions are overly simplistic or incomplete

Presentation 20%

Attractive, well- organized, well- written project report

The project report has two of the three qualities: attractive, well-organized, well-written

The project report has one of the three qualities: attractive, well-organized, well- written

The project report has none of the three qualities: attractive, well- organized, well- written

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