Strategy of Growth Example For Free

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There are three tactics which can support a strategy of growth. Firstly a firm can adopt internal or organic development. For example Glaxo Smith Klein (GSK) a large UK drugs business reorganised its research and development (R&D) operations to improve expansion. Secondly, another UK pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca carried out takeovers of bio-science firms (mergers and acquisitions M&A). Compare and contrast these two approaches to growth by discussing their relative advantages and disadvantages. Use examples from any relevant sector, not just “Big Pharma”.


The paper presents a contrast between conservative and aggressive growth options. It discusses mergers and acquisitions, organic growth and alliances using examples from a range of industries which include online businesses, brewery firms, soft drink giants and also a major pharmaceutical industry merger. In examining the interface between the different growth options the paper posits that they are not mutually exclusive and one may lead to the other, whereas a portfolio of growth options is strategically astute to have. The advantages, disadvantages and issues surrounding the growth options suggest that it is a risk-benefit premise that underpins the value perceptions from a chosen growth route. Competitive situations and resourcing s aspects also govern the choice a chosen route.

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1. Introduction

This paper discusses the different routes to growth that an enterprise might take. Given the growing popularity and mixed success of aggressive growth option of mergers and acquisitions, the paper compares and contrasts them with more conservative options like organic growth and alliances. It first presents the interface between the different routes and then focuses on their relative advantages and disadvantages. The contrast is also brought out in discussing needs, and in highlighting the issue of achieving synergies for delivering greater value under the different growth routes. The paper focuses on organic growth and mergers and acquisitions in the main, with some development of the context of alliancing in comparing the two. It closes with some strategic highlights from the discussion.

2. The Interface and Non-Exclusive Nature of the Growth Options

Strategic growth options for a firm usually take three forms. These are growth through alliances with other firms in different areas ranging from R&D to distribution and other forms of joint ventures; growth through mergers or acquisitions (M&A) – that implies creating a new entity through a merger or an expanded firms through an alliance and; organic development that is essentially about growing as an organism through overtime development using investment from surpluses the firm creates from its operations to acquire more assets, personnel and diversify or expand into business areas (Sudarsanam, 2003, p. 70). While these are different options they are not necessarily mutually exclusive. An organisation can follow one option or the other simultaneously. For example a global firm can alliance with another in a new market for purposes of accessing its distribution network while continue to grow organically in another market it has a very entrenched position in.

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