Case Type: increase market share; business competition/competitive response.
Consulting Firm: Capgemini Consulting first round job interview.
Industry Coverage: industrial equipment; electronics & semiconductors.
Case Interview Question #00399: Alstom (Euronext: ALO) is a large multinational conglomerate which holds interests in the power generation and transport markets. The company’s headquarters are located in Levallois-Perret, near Paris, France. For this case, we’re only concerned with a particular small division of Alstom’s USA operations that manufactures electrical equipments.
Recently, the client has been losing market share in the U.S. for the past two years. The Director of the division has hired your consulting team to help him find out the cause of declining market share. Also, he would like you to come up with a quick solution to fix the problem. How would you approach thhis case? What would you tell the client to do?
Additional Information: (to be given to you if asked)
This particular division of Alstom USA has only one product line: low-voltage Miniature Circuit Breaker (MCB) for industrial use. The low-voltage miniature circuit breakers currently on the U.S. market are undifferentiated from a quality standpoint, and are also completely interchangeable.
A circuit breaker is an automatically operated electrical switch designed to protect an electrical circuit from damage caused by overload or short circuit. Its basic function is to detect a fault condition and, by interrupting continuity, to immediately discontinue electrical flow.
There are three major players in the U.S. market of miniature circuit breakers: our client, General Electric (GE), and Siemens. Their market share and price per unit are shown in the following table.
|Competitor A: GE||Competitor B: Siemens||Client|
|Market share two years ago||25%||35%||40%|
|Market share today||38%||35%||27%|
|Price per breaker||$9.00||$8.10||$9.50|
There have been no price changes over the past two years. Market share was fairly constant prior to that period. The market is mature. Competitor GE has stolen market share from the client.