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Reference no. 9-918-501
Published by:
Harvard Business Publishing (2017)
12 September 2017
10 pages
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The RoboTech case describes the challenges facing the CEO of a small, Singapore-based industrial robotics company that decides to diversify away from its core industrial robot business by leveraging its expertise into the medical-devices industry. It launches an innovative product (a specialized surgical robot) in an unfamiliar market segment (spinal surgery) and decides to enter the unfamiliar, distant US healthcare market, which is characterized by rapid technological change and intense competition with large, established competitors. RoboTech's initial struggles with maintaining product supply and customer support are also complicated by regulatory pressures and shifting reimbursement rates. The case illustrates the strategic and organizational pressures that result from facing numerous unanticipated pressures in a company that lacks the resources, capabilities, and management experience to deal with them. Although the case was developed for courses in international management / international business, it is also well suited to courses in strategy, technology management, and general management.


Competitive forces; Diversification; Evaluating business investments; External environment analysis; Government regulations; Industry structure; International management; Market entry; Resource capabilities; Sustainable competitive advantage
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