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Strategic Marketing Analysis of GE Appliances and GE Aviation

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Table of Contents

  • Introduction
  • Vision, mission & values of GE Appliances & GE Aviation and GE company overall
    • Vision of GE Appliances
    • Mission of GE Appliances
    • Values of GE appliances
    • Vision of GE Aviation
    • Mission of GE Aviation
    • Values of GE Aviation
    • Vision of GE
    • Mission of GE
    • Values of GE
  • Strategic Segmentation
  • Analysis of GE Appliances and GE Aviation
  • External Assessment of GE Appliances and GE Aviation
    • Analysis through PESTEL Analysis
      • GE Appliances
      • GE Aviation
    • Analysis through Porter’s Five Forces Model
      • GE Appliances
      • GE Aviation
    • Key Success Factors
      • GE Appliances
      • GE Aviation
    • Analysis through Strategic Group Mapping
      • GE Appliances
      • GE Aviation
    • Analysis through SWOT Analysis
      • GE Appliances
      • GE Aviation
  • Internal Assessment of GE Appliances and GE Aviation
    • Analysis through the VRIN Model
      • GE Appliances
      • GE Aviation
    • Analysis through SWOT Analysis
  • Positioning of GE Appliances and GE Aviation
    • Positioning through BCG Matrix
  • Analysis of the Existing Strategies of the Strategic Business Units and Corporate Level
  • Final Comments and Conclusions
  • Recommendations
  • References

Introduction

General Electric has been successful in establishing itself as an icon in the business world. The legacy of Jack Welch’s leadership can be clearly seen in the brand name that GE has been able to build for itself. The business strategies applied by GE are the main reasons behind the evolution of GE from a company dealing with electrical devices to a conglomerate. Since the inception GE has diversified into many other areas. GE is functioning aviation industry, power production, diagnostic imaging, plastics, and TV programming. GE has operations in 100 countries and is opting for further business growth in global scale. The business strategy followed by GE mainly is focused around five basic initiative, Technical leadership, facilities, customer orientation, platforms for innovation and globalisation. GE Aviation is the world’s largest manufacturer of large and small aircraft engines. GE aviation caters to commercial as well as military aircraft producers. Their exemplary research and development enables them to manufacture specialized engines for marine applications. GE Aviation has a well-established research set up, the research work carried out at GE’s research labs are the main reason for their latest and successful aircraft engine designs. GE Aviation also provides services like engine exchange, onboard service for aircrafts and technology up-gradation. The engine exchange service of GE provides innovative solution for delivering the overhaul needs. In this service programme GE replaces the old engines of the aircraft with an overhauled engine. This service helps commercial and military aircraft operators in acquiring a fully functioning engine while their engine is removed for maintenance purpose.

The On-wing support of GE services provides aircraft operators with the facility of having aircraft maintenance solutions on-call or on point. GE On wing support has a worldwide net of Quick dispatch and engine repair service. The on wing support can be approached on a call basis or on regular basis. The On wing support facilitates 3000 repair solutions every year to 250 clients. The On wing support service of GE provides value-added repair facility for customers at any place and at any time. This helps the aircraft operators to lower their operational cost and maximize their profit. GE Aviation also offers various upgraded technologies for the aircraft running in old engines. This service provides the aircraft operators a cost-effective way of upgrading their engines without incurring the cost of new engine. These up-gradation are provided in customized packages to address each client requirement specifically.

GE also holds the position of being one of the largest producers of appliances in the world. The appliances division of GE has been operative since 1907. GE has major four brands under the GE appliances business unit. These are GE Café, GE Monogram, GE Profile and GE.

The GE Café series is inspired by appliances used in restaurants. The feel of all the products coming under this range is been derived from the look of luxurious Café houses. The products have the aesthetics of stainless steel and modern kitchen designs. The brand offers products ranging from electrical gas oven to refrigerators and dishwasher. The GE monogram line has products which are luxurious and elegant in their look. This brand has product range from refrigerator, ovens to dishwasher. This brand also provides entire product range for kitchen appliances. The GE profile brand has products which have the most recent contemporary designs and appliances technologies. The feel of this brand is luxury and stylish designs. The GE convenience provides kitchen appliances which have the most advanced technology and quality. This brand also provides all the product ranges for kitchen appliances. GE appliances have several dealers and agents across the world. Their supply chain is well spread across the globe and in many countries they have opened up their own showrooms. The basic USP of GE appliances is the designs they offer and the technology they incorporate in their appliances. Most of the GE products are claimed by the company to be energy efficient. GE appliances also offer after-sales to its customers. Customers are provided with the facility of contacting GE for any kind of information and troubleshooting regarding the GE appliance bought by them.

Both GE aviation and GE appliance are notably doing well in their business and are regarded as high revenue making business units by GE.

GE is an organization of advanced technology, services and finance organization dedicated to advancement in the health, energy, infrastructure and transportation. The business exists in over 100 nations around the globe and hires around 300,000 people worldwide.  GE is one of the diversified but leading industrial corporations across the globe. Since its incorporation, the company has been engaged in manufacturing, developing as well as marketing a wide product range for the generation, transmission, distribution, monitor, control and effective utilization of electricity, utilization of electricity.   Over last few years, the organization has acquired or adopted new technologies as well as services which have considerably widened the scope of these activities (GE-imagination at work).

The products of such organization would include major appliances, industrial automation products, lighting products, motors, medical diagnostic imaging equipment, locomotives, electrical distribution and control equipment, nuclear  power support services power generation and delivery products and fuel assemblies, chemicals for  treatment of water and production processes, industrial and military jet engines for planes, engineered materials such as silicone, plastics and super abrasive industrial diamonds. The services of GE would include electrical product supply houses, installation of electrical apparatus, engineering, rebuilding and repairing as financial services (United States Securities and Exchange Commission, 10).

GE Appliances and GE Aviation are two significant divisions of this renowned group. GE Appliances is one of the world’s leading producers of large appliances. Since the year 1907, the company has introduced advanced appliances to enhance the consumers’ lives. The company is continuing with that legacy with continual innovations in the energy conservation.

GE Aviation is known for the manufacturing of both small and large jet engines of military and commercial aircrafts. The organization also supplies aircraft derived engines for the marine applications as well as provide aviation services. The organization’s technological excellence is supported by putting substantial investment in the research and development. Its technological excellence has been the foundation of the organization’s growth and this helps the organization to offer quality products to the consumers.

This report would look into the strategic management of these two divisions using various strategic marketing theories and frameworks. 

Vision, Mission & Values of GE Appliances & GE Aviation and GE Company Overall

Vision of GE Appliances

The vision envisaged by GE Appliances is to transform itself as one of the leading players in the field of consumer electronics. To transform itself as one of the leading players the company endeavors to excel in terms of its performances and operational efficiencies with the overall support of the existing pool of human resources in the organization.  The vision envisaged by the company focuses on enhancing the ownership experiences of the consumers in purchasing such electronic appliances produced by the company. The company to fulfill the vision envisaged constantly monitors the quality aspects of the products produced to render maximum possible satisfaction to the consumers (GE Home and Business Solutions).

Mission of GE Appliances

To achieve the visionary objectives GE Appliances has set a mission statement over which they operate. The company works to fulfill the visionary objectives by focusing on producing consumer products of supreme quality which would thereby enhance on the parameter of reliability. Moreover in addition to producing products of supreme quality the company also helps in rendering enhanced support to the customer groups through the continuous improvement of the customer service programs. Thus the objectives underlined by GE Appliances in order to fulfill the organizational vision not only work to enhance the quality of the products but also strategizes to reduce the cost of the goods manufactured. This feature helps the company in enhancing the loyalty base of the customers for they feel that the company works to cater for their personal needs and also helps them to save more (Appliances).

Values of GE Appliances

The business philosophy or organizational values of GE Appliances consist of working on continuous innovation to help produce sophisticated products which would deliver to the customer high quality services. Further the organizational values also consist of rendering products at low costs which helps the customers satisfy their desires of availing sophisticated consumer durables. Thus the organizational philosophy of the company mainly signifies a customer-centric approach in which the needs of the customer are given supreme importance (GE Home and Business Solutions).

Vision of GE Aviation

The aviation arm of General Electric Corporation has set some visionary objectives in order to perform in an effective and competitive environment. The visionary approach of the company focuses mainly on helping the pilots to fly the aeroplanes in a more effective and easy manner so as to avoid uncertain incidents like flight accidents. Innovation rendered in the airplanes to help the pilots identify potential obstacles and thereby alter the flight modes thereby also helps in rendering security to the large number of people on board. Thus the visionary approach of GE Aviation is found to incorporate three main points- rendering technological innovation in the airplanes to help the pilots understand potential topographical obstacles in the flight path, helping the pilots to strategize their flying activities to avoid such and make flying easy and finally rendering security to the passengers and crew members (Rapids).

Mission of GE Aviation

The objectives underlined in the mission statement of GE Aviation focus mainly on fulfilling the organizational vision of the company. The first objective in the mission statement of the company focuses on rendering high amount of innovation to the existing flying technology so as to render efficiency in the movement of airplanes. Innovations rendered in the flight technology not only cater to the efficient movement of the flying vehicles but also in the large scale developments in the manufacturing operations to render large scale efficiency. The second objective lay down by the organizational mission large endeavors to create an environment of upscale business innovation and sophistication (GE Aviation).

Values of GE Aviation

Organizational values of GE Aviation evaluated based on the mission and vision philosophy of the concern can be studied on the following points. The organizational values strongly focuses on the realm of flexibility to help address the emerging challenges cropping up in regards to the organizational services. Flexibility is also rendered by the company in enhancing the productive feature of the aircrafts, sustaining developments rendered by continuous monitoring and also in reducing the flight costs. Organizational values also ponder on enhancing the service dimension of the company by creation of additional facilities. (GE Aviation).

Vision of GE

The vision of General Electric Corporation in total can be studied along the following aspects. Firstly the company focuses to enhance its research and development activities through the rendering of large amount of investments in such sectors. Secondly, the company also focuses to move into uncharted territories so as to help the business grow to manifold amounts. Thirdly the company also visualizes reducing potential impact on the environmental resources like fossil fuels and water resources.  Finally in the fourth case the company endeavors to gain the support of potential stakeholders while devising strategizes to counter business problems (GE).

Mission of GE

The objectives of the organizational mission of General Electric consist of fulfilling the following points. The company focuses on devising such principles and policies that would help the company in deriving huge amount of revenues in each financial quarter. General Electric’s mission statement thus also focuses on expanding its business operations by moving over to newer areas and also in helping the organizational people to work effectively in groups. Through potential teamwork the employees can work to become more productive and knowledgeable. Henceforth the organizational mission of General Electric largely focuses on enhancing the interactive environment in the concern (de Mooij, 270-271).    

Values of GE

Organizational values of General Electric can be studied along the following parameters. Firstly the business concern focuses strongly on rendering high amount of innovation in the process and existing organizational systems. Secondly another main philosophy on which the business organization functions is endeavoring to enter into newer markets and developing innovative business strategies. Thirdly the organizational philosophy also encourages the employees to reflect high amount of open-mindedness to become highly flexible to external changes. Fourthly the organizational values also focus in enhancing the skill and knowledge base of the internal employees by involving them while taking key decisions (Prokesch, 6).

Strategic Segmentation

The organizations typically do the strategic segmentation from three wide perspectives Segmentation can be done from the strategic perspective. Here, the focus is kept on deciding on the industry an organization should deal in, the wide range of products and services to be offered. The SBU set of any organization and the business models are the mechanisms of any company to implement this kind of segmentation. Another type of segmentation looks into the wide range of product markets, i.e., what kinds of products and services are required to be offered in which specific markets. Another type of segmentation is tactical segmentation which would take customer value approach towards marketing.

Strategic segmentation deals with deals with the kind of competition – the relevant industry, the internal strategy and the products and services they are offering.

General Electric is organized in more than some 20 SBUs including GE Appliances, GE Aircraft engines, plastics, medical systems, power systems and some others. Each of these strategic business units (SBUs) focuses on a wide range of product markets. For an instance, GE Lighting offers business lighting, home lighting, lighting systems in Germany, Australia and some other countries. Within each of the product segments, the marketing managers carry out tactical segmentation of the customers such as major accounting key accounts, special projects and some other projects.

One of such recommended approaches in the strategic segmentation is that for an organization, it is pretty much significant to decide whether the company wants to have few products sold in too many segments or it wants many products to be sold in few segments. It is preferable that the organizations must not offer a number of products in a number of segments as this is expected to dilute the focus of the company as well as stretch the company’s resources to a greater extent.

The advantage is the strategic segmentation approach is that it can emerge as a force to keep an eye on the specific product lines marketed in a specific segment. The business is required to keep the focus pretty sharp and must utilize the economies of scale to improve the supply end of the chain. GE has more than 40 business units as well as a wide range of products to offer. In this case, it would not be wrong to say that the company is offering various products; however, the products are specific to one particular business unit or segment. For an instance, GE has    lighting division which offers products in home and office lighting electrical instruments, while GE aviation is into the manufacturing of jet engines. This is the reason why the group has been a great success despite of the fact that it has so many business units offering so many products with its operation across the globe.

Analysis of GE Appliances and GE Aviation

One of the six significant operating segments of General Electric is GE lighting which is a $ 14 billion business unit dealing in home and industrial appliances, integrated industrial equipments, systems and services, offering solution for the industrial, commercial and residential usage in over 100 countries across the globe. The appliances division of this organization manufactures and sells off wide range of home appliances which includes freezers, refrigerators , dishwashers, ranges, washing machines, microwave ovens , room air conditioners, speed cooking ovens, dryers, water filtration etc. Furthermore, this specific division consists of largest manufacturer’ service organization in the appliances industry.

The wide range of products of this business unit comes in four unique brands including GE, Monogram, GE Profile and Hotpoint.  Each of these brand names includes around five product lines. In a year, on an average, GE appliance launches a new product range in the market.

Communication has been one of the significant attributes to describe the products in a very extensive manner. The communication would also include a detailed description as well as visual representation of the merchandises. The communication would include key details as well as differentiating features with effective marketing messages with comprehensive marketing details and technical specifications. The related documents would include instructions on installation of merchandising materials as well as use and care directions. Furthermore, advertising of any product would include high resolution images for the display on B2C and B2B websites as well as print on-demand applications.

In every year, the appliance division of the organization has two significant new product launches. This demands commercialization of the content of 400 – 500 products. During the period, the marketing agency would consider two people for some two weeks so that they can manually evaluate the specs as well as collate the data fetched from two databases and would develop the content for the specific website.

GE Aviation is another significant unit of General Electric. As GE Aviation has opened up a manufacturing unit into an emerging market which is expected to put a positive impact on the surrounding community. The company realizes its responsibilities wherever its opens up a facility. In Brazil division with the GE Celma section being a large example of the events taken by an organization to create an effective impact on the emerging markets.

GE Celma provides a significant facility which provides significant engine services to the airline customers in the United States, Latin America, as well as Europe. With the company’s presence in these specific markets, the responsible organizations would invest in the employee development, establish positive relationships with both local and state government, would increase the health, environmental and safety standards of entire supply chain.

The company initially invested into Celma as the minority stockholder and consequently bought off the organization which would make it a key member of the company’s global airplanes maintenance circle of engines, and other repair services as well as the total overall system. In such a manner, GE Celma would have the opportunity to expand the services to emerge as a stronger global competitor, offering world-class responsive consumer problem-solving issues.

The facility in GE Celma earns differences owing to certain features like the management systems, leadership, innovative practices as well as the strong core employee group consisting of highly elevated members of the local community. The leaders of the plants have developed a stream of various resources as well as the  inputs which would not only create value only for the company, but it would also create value for its stakeholders including customers, government entities, business partners, and the regional  economy.

GE Aviation plays a significant role in the surrounding community and the economic development. GE Celma has experienced a growth, technology is supposed to play a significant role in the development. This demands the inclusion of talented employees. The company unit has made considerable investment in both the technology and training. In this case the company can also be benefitted by the workforce in any country. For an instance, Brazil has a labor force which is pretty flexible as well as possesses positive attitude towards learning, training and the education offered to them.

GE supports various education projects meant for the employees. The impact of GE Celma has been on the specific regions which had helped the organization to be gained from more customers, more business and assist the growth of the town in significantly sustainable means.  The regional industry continues to identify the company unit to raise the bar with well trained and top-level employees. The supportive relationship of the organization with local community would have resulted in considerable opportunities for growth for the employees. Apart from that, the cost savings and operational improvements for business would offer enhanced educational opportunities to translate workforce to more innovative as well as productive.

The investment of the business unit is on the skill training as well as orientation programs which would be done in the partnership with the local firms rather than making the social investment. Any organization is also required to align itself with the respective laws in any specific country. For an example, the law in Brazil would require the organizations to hire a considerable number of disabled individuals. Aligning the company with the laws and to satisfy above requirements, the business units has established program which would develop a program which would prepare the employees to carry on with the future job requirements. The business unit has developed the specific program with the partnership with technical school as well as the surrounding community with people with disabilities would be trained and subsequently, the company would hire the qualified ones.

A business unit is also required to be conversant with the national policies of the surrounding. The national policies of the country focus to encourage the country’s corporate social responsibilities. The banks as well as the banking institutions owned by Brazil give preferences to the companies demonstrating socially responsible practices while approving financial packages for the companies. This specific business unit continued to carry out the work with local environment to establish innovative practices which would help the whole region.

This specific division of GE is the leading services exporter across Brazil. This business unit has been a leading taxpayer in specific region. The company has worked in accordance with the state government to enhance speed of both the export and import processes and lead to the cost reductions. The activities have helped the competitiveness of the country in this global market place, in which a considerable tax would be imposed on the export to speed up the market itself.

While working with local industry council, the company would establish a paperless system to lead to an efficient market. The company was the first aviation as well as service business to be permitted practicing the paperless process in some specific location. This had out a positive effect on the economic development of the region. This business unit was able to fetch an appropriate tax benefit on the year 2007 which would include reductions in the tax rate of labor which are applicable to the incremental work which would be bought to the organization. Since the time, the company has considerably increased the business volume.

The company has fetched the trust of the local environment as well as earned the respect of the leaders as singly valued industry partner. The majority of the regulatory considerations of this business unit relates to the environmental compliance and is required to be address at very local address. In the wake of the environmental issues, the business unit has been very much forthcoming on the environmental issues. Furthermore, the country has been engaged with the government as well as the environmental agencies (GE Citizenship).

Before buying out Celma, as a part of the due diligence process, the company had found groundwater contamination which had the potential to affect the neighbors. The executive team in the business unit had an open discussion with the local authorities regarding the issue. Since the time, there has been a continual site remediation. Once the acquisition was over, the company had constructed a wastewater treatment plan. Adding to it, a reengineering of the chemical processes was there to reengineer the chemical process wastewater which would result in the establishment of a closed-loop system which would reduce the wastewater discharge and would be more energy efficient.

External Assessment of GE Appliances and GE Aviation

Analysis through PESTEL Analysis

The external assessment of the strategic business units GE Appliances and GE Aviation would be conducted on the basis of a PESTEL Analysis. The PESTEL analysis would be based on the basis of political, economic, religious, scientific, ecological and legal concerns parameters in regards to the American region. These factors hugely affect the operational situation of the strategic business units of a firm. Thus increased political pressure was rendered on the firm to scrutinize the internal operations so as to make it cleanse.

GE Appliances

  • Political Factors and GE Appliances

The GE Appliances arm of GE had been badly hit by political factors in context of United States owing to its involvement with fraudulent activities. A case shows that the GE Appliances unit had been closely attacked in the region of Columbia owing to its increased involvement with fraudulent activities like trafficking of drugs and other money laundering events (Hansen, Mowen, and Guan, 347).

  • Economic Factors and GE Appliances

The economic factor in relation to United States that affects the course of operation of GE Appliances is rendering huge accessibility to infrastructural resources. The GE Appliances through the use of resources and also through the gaining of strategic business alliances gradually gained a strong soil in the American region. Moreover, the company is also encouraged by the American government to render a large amount of investments that would help foster the research and development activities of the strategic business unit (Cushman and Kovacic, 303).

  • Social Factors and GE Appliances

With the development of the internet technology the American society had largely transformed itself to interact with each other. This level of social interaction has helped the consumer appliances companies like GE Appliances to gain the views of a large number of people and thereby can develop their product portfolio to meet their demands. However the level of social interaction also renders a negative impact spreading a wrong message to the society in regards to the company’s products (Committee on the Impact of Biotechnology on Farm-Level Economics and Sustainability, National Research Council, 27). 

  • Technological Factors and GE Appliances

The American region renders large amount of promotion to help in generating an effective technological environment in the country. This technological environment helps companies like GE Appliances to render a large amount of innovation in the products produced. Further the company can also form strategic alliances with other technological firms in the same sector to render more effective services to the existing consumers (Pearce, Robinson and Mital, 194). 

  • Environmental Factors

The strategic business unit of GE, GE Appliances works to fulfill several environmental parameters to gain the loyalty of a large number of consumer groups in the American soil.  GE Appliances focuses to render such products to the American consumers which would facilitate them by rendering high amount of efficiency in using less amount of electrical energy and also in protecting the environment by reducing the amount of fuel emissions. This fact helps in cultivating a favorable image of the company in the United States (GE Company).

  • Legal Factors

GE Appliances serves to satisfy the legal parameters of United States in order to perform effectively in the country. The company strongly operates to fulfill the legal requirements by fulfilling the operational and contractual requirements needed to comply with in respect to the stakeholders. Moreover to enhance its brand image it also endeavors to enhance the ethical considerations which in turn augments the goodwill of the company (Kurtz, 75-76).

GE Aviation

  • Political Factors and GE Aviation

The political factors in the United States largely required the production of innovative fighter planes which would be produced in such fashion that would render enhanced services at reduced maintenance costs. However cancellation of such program rendered a huge blow to firms like GE Aviation which had recruited skilled staffs to fulfill the needs of the envisaged program (GE Aviation).

  • GE Aviation and The Economy of United States

The aviation unit of GE is planning to divulge in such activities which would help in the transformation of the economic landscape of the country. Innovation rendered in the flight services of GE Aviation would help the economy of United States to gain huge amount of financial savings of around $65.6 million (GE Aviation).     

  • GE Aviation and The American Society

The innovative designs and processes enabled at GE Aviation helps render enhanced protection to the American society and also renders large amount of sophistication to many industrial and allied activities. Machineries designed by the firm help in rendering greater effectiveness to many industries and security services of the nation (GE Aviation).

  • GE Aviation and American Technological Environment

The technological environment of United States has helped GE Aviation to produce innovative machineries which would render efficiency in terms of reducing the consumption levels of fuel. With the help of increased government support, the company is working spontaneously to render potential innovativeness to the quality of flight services (Earth Times).

  • GE Aviation and Environmental Issues

The strategic business unit, GE Aviation works to render potential support in helping the people gets a pollution-free environment. The company endeavors to produce such machineries and engines which would reduce the noise and emission level of the airplanes. The company also works to reduce the carbon emissions from the airplanes and thereby reduces the environmental pollution levels (Earth Times).

  • GE Aviation and Legal Issues

The company GE Aviation strongly works to satisfy the legal requirements pertaining to the United States region and thereby renders a faithful image of the concern to the stakeholders. GE Aviation reinstates that it would strongly abide the rules and regulatory policies of United States while operating its flight services (GE).

Analysis through Porter’s Five Forces Model

The analysis of the competitive position of a firm can be done on the basis of the model presented by Michel   E. Porter. This model presented by Michel Porter helps in analyzing the external environment of a business firm by focusing on the potential of the supplying community, the consumer potential, the potential of the existing competitors and as well as of the newcomers in the region. Further the model also focuses on the level of threat rendered by the existence of substitutes in the market. Figuratively it can be represented as follows.

Figure 1

Analysis of GE Appliances and GE Aviation

(Source: Hill and Jones, 43)

GE Appliances

  • Supplier Power

The consumer appliances firm relies heavily on its supplying community to deliver potential resources for helping to produce quality products at highly affordable rates. Further the firm works on gaining control over the suppliers by engaging them in quality development programs to help enhance the productive life cycle of the products (Liu, 72).

  • Buyer Power

The power of the buyers is rightly addressed by GE Appliances through rendering spontaneous innovation in the product and service dimension. Huge amount of innovation rendered in the product scenario helps the firm in enhancing the goodwill and value (General Electric Company).

  • Existence of Substitutes

The threat of substitutes is countered by GE Appliances through the process of continuous innovation which helps in producing newer and newer commodities over a period of time. However with the development of activities like online marketing the firm is countering the threat of substitute products produced by other potential firms (Chihak et. al., 12).

  • Existing Competition

In regards to existing competition, GE Appliances faces increased threat from the activities of potential companies like Whirlpool, Samsung and other international consumer appliances firms. These existing competitors generate competition through the opening up of a number of retail outlets in key regions of the world (Chihak et. al., 12).

  • Competition from New Entrants

GE Appliances through the rendering of large amount of investments in key projects and technological sectors renders potential obstacle to the foreign firms seeking an entry into the region. However the continuous changes in the demand cycle of the consumer makes way for newcomers to venture into the said industry (Chihak et. al., 12).

GE Aviation

  • Supplier Power

GE Aviation focuses on maintaining a strong relationship with its supplying community by developing a diversified pool of suppliers who would perform based on contracts. The company is envisaging gaining the strength of the women potential to form contracting parties for such supplier programs (General Electric Company).    

  • Buyer Power

The views of the consumers are further gained by GE Aviation through involving their views in regards to innovative programs for products and processes.  Consumers of the company mainly consisting of niche segments are invited by the company management and given training on relevant matters to help cooperate in an effective manner (GE Aviation).

  • Existence of Substitutes

Through the use of innovative mechanisms and processes GE Aviation renders effective customer servicing by rendering customer servicing and fleet management activities. Further the generation of services in special sectors like defense and marine makes the emergence of substitutes quite difficult (GE Aviation).

  • Existing Competition

GE Aviation invites potential competition from existing competitors in the airline industry like Rolls Royce and Pratt and Whitney which also generates airline services. The company counters strategic competition from these firms in regards to activities like acquisitions and mergers.

  • Competition from New Entrants

GE Aviation with its core internal strengths based on tremendous innovation and reduction in the cost paradigms offers potential barrier to the entry of new firms in the said industry. 

Key Success Factors

GE Appliances

The strategic business unit GE Appliances operates based on some key success factors to help render effective services to the consumers and the society at large. GE Appliances has set a number of distribution and service centers located in many regions which helps in rendering enhanced services to the people of America. Moreover the company works on based on high levels of innovation which helps in producing effective products and also in economizing the productive scenario. This factor thereby helps the firm to gain a large amount of profits in regard to its competitors. Further the growth in distribution and service centers also enhances the loyalty aspect of the consumers. The company’s distribution base depending mainly on local dealers helps the company gains both economies of scale and in penetrating larger market areas (Pearce, Robinson and Mital, 194).  

GE Aviation

The key success factors which help GE Aviation to gain a competitive advantage in regard to its competitors like Rolls Royce and Pratt and Whitney are like rendering a culture of innovation and collaboration. Further, the company also works to reduce the operational and manufacturing costs which would help it to gain increased productivity. The company also works on a key success factor where it strongly focuses on some specific market segments to help market the products and services. Market planning and research activities of the company help GE Aviation to gain the focus of niche segments pertaining to defense, airlines and other marine industries. This success factors help the company to gain a better competitive position in the American market in regards to other airline companies (Bennett, 48).

Analysis Through Strategic Group Mapping

Through the process of strategic group mapping the strategic activities of different firms belonging to the same industry is analyzed. This analysis is conducted to understand and analyze the difference in the profitability levels of the large number of firms in the industry. Further the strategic group mapping also endeavors to analyze the different barriers which come into action for stopping firms to exchange their strategic variables with each other. Strategic group mapping thus makes an analysis based mainly on two parameters firstly from the viewpoint of the total industry and secondly from the viewpoint of the different firms operating inside it. Through the analysis the different barriers are observed which disturb the potential movement of the different firms unto each other. Thus firms operating inside an industry must endeavor to form different strategic groups which would together resist the entry of foreign firms. Strategic group mapping model maps the different industries on the basis of two axes which measures firstly the strategic factors pertaining to the potential markets and the strategic availability of resources. On the second axes the target customer groups pertaining to the different industries and firms are measured. Thus the analysis reflects how the different firms form strategic groups based on the resources and markets to fulfill the needs of the targeted customers. Diagrammatically it can be represented as follows (Miyamoto, 1-3)

Figure 3

Strategic Marketing Analysis of GE Appliances and GE Aviation

(Source: Miyamoto, 3)

GE Appliances

The strategic group mapping of GE Appliances is conducted on the basis of several market players in the electronic appliances industry like Whirlpool, Maytag and Samsung. The strategic group maps of the appliances industry is measured along two parameters pertaining to price and quality of the products produced. Based on the analysis it is observed that GE helps in catering the target market through the production of high quality products however at low prices. It renders potential competition to firms like Maytag and Samsung positioned along two extremes of high quality and high price and low quality and low price respectively. The same can be graphically shown as follows. (Brastine, Manolache, Rising, Vasko, 6).

 

Figure 4

(Source: Brastine, Manolache, Rising, Vasko, 6).

GE Aviation

Similarly the GE Aviation company’s strategic group map is composed of key aviation firms operating in the European soil like Rolls Royce and Pratt and Whitney. These key players compete with each other in the European soil for the production of engines for aircrafts. The strategic group map in relation to the said firms can be drawn along the parameters of innovation and other strategic activities like mergers and acquisitions (GlobalSecurity.org).

Figure 5

(Source: Author’s Creation)

Analysis Through SWOT Analysis

The SWOT Analysis is the acronym for analyzing the Strength, Weakness, Opportunities and Threats in respect to a firm. The strength and weakness factors are analyzed based on the internal competencies of the firm and hence are considered as the controllable materials. On the contrary the opportunities and threats are the external factors which failed to be managed by the firm. However the firm through the optimal utilization of the existing resources can happen to gain the advantage of the external opportunities. This acts therefore as the strength of the firm. On the other hand the weakness factors of the firm being uncontrolled serve potential threats to the company. Thus the firm needs to strategically govern the SWOT parameters to gain competitive advantage in the long run.

GE Appliances

On the basis of the topic above, the SWOT Analysis of both the strategic business units GE Appliances and GE Aviation is conducted to understand their competitive structure. The internal strengths and weakness of GE Appliances studied reflects that the company has a large population of subcontractors which help in producing a huge number of appliances for the consumer market. This helps the company in gaining a larger market. Other internal strengths that the company possesses are the availability of technological and distribution expertise which signifies that the company works hard on innovating its processes and systems. Through an active distribution system the company gains the advantage of lowering the cost of the products and thereby in gaining a larger market for the produce. However the potential weakness that the company suffers from is large dependence on outsourcing arms like contractors and other regional units. Owing to such facts the firm fails to render a huge amount of control on such and hence acts as the key weaknesses of the company (Pearce, Robinson and Mital, 194).

In regards to external opportunities, GE Appliances owing to its huge brand name was successful in getting over to new markets and being able to tap a large number of consumers. The strategic business unit of GE, GE Appliances started operating on the concept of sub-branding to gain a larger market area in respect to its competitors. Further the company operating both on price and product differentiation and acting on the sub-branding concept gradually gained larger response from potential consumers around the world. These policies of the company like economizing on the price factors while enhancing on the quality front also carved potential threat for the company. It is because GE Appliances having increased price in some lines would face potential conflict from the consumers in both the existing and newer markets (Aaker and Joachimsthaler, 98).

GE Aviation

GE Aviation also has potential strengths in respect to other potential firms operating in the same industry. The company endeavors to promote large amount of innovation and lowering the cost factor in the engines produced to gain larger market bases in the aviation industry. Thus the research and development activities of the company act as potential strengths in helping GE Aviation gain competitive advantage. GE Aviation suffers from a salient weakness for its large dependence on external contractors for manufacture of effective engines. This fact as potential weakness of the firm owing to lose management controls. Again the opportunities and threats of GE Aviation show that several key players operating in the strategic sectors have a huge demand for such aerospace engines produced by the firm. The changing demand conditions in the external market put an increased amount of pressure on these aviation firms to produce more innovated products and also to act on the price factors. (GE Aviation).

Internal Assessment of GE Appliances and GE Aviation

Analysis Through The VRIN Model

The VRIN Model can be used by firms to gain competitive advantage through the optimal utilization of the existing resource base. The large number of resources available to an organization can be categorized in both tangible and non-tangible aspects. Through the use of the VRIN Model the identification of the above category of resources is enabled. Firstly the VRIN Model identifies such resources which would help the firm in gaining the advantage of external opportunities and a potential to counter threats. Secondly the resources identified need to be rare enough in being untraceable in regards to competitive firms. Thirdly the resources identified in order to help the firm gain competitive advantage means those would be non-imitable by other firms operating in the industry. Fourthly the nature of the resources would be such which fail to get substituted by other competitive firms operating in the same industry. Thus through the use of the VRIN Model the firms in the industry endeavor to gain competitive advantage apart from its potential competitors (Charger et. al. 83-84).

GE Appliances  

Making an analysis based on the resource-based approach of GE Appliances it is observed that the firm has a strong potential of technological competence which helps it to gain a competitive advantage in regards to other companies. GE Appliances has considerable advantage in being able to render huge amount of investments in the building of suitable infrastructure to help render electrical power to the households. Working on the basis of a proper distribution system helps the company in being able to reduce the cost of the products and services rendered. Thus strength of innovation is considered as a potential resource factor for GE Appliances (General Electric Company). Again GE Appliances has a strong network base of potential suppliers which helps the firm to gain easy access of effective resources. The company also has a potential human resource base which helps in making effective plans to help the firm gain larger market share in newer and existing markets (Salaman, Storey and Billsberry, 203).

GE Aviation 

The resource-based analysis of GE Aviation shows that the company has enough skilled human resource potential which helps the company in producing a large volume of innovative lines. The company also focuses on gaining the advantage of maintaining a huge product line to render potential competition to the other airline firms in the same region. Moreover, the firm also works on definite sustainable strategies to gain holdings of potential competitive firms in the same industry through the process of acquisition and mergers. GE Aviation also has a large technological base which helps the firm in gaining considerable productive advantage over other firms (Aharoni and Nachum, 241).   

Analysis Through SWOT Analysis

Internal assessment of the strategic business units done on the basis of SWOT Analysis would strongly reflect on the Strength and Weakness of the business firms. The strength and weaknesses identified can be properly managed by the business firms to enhance the dimension of business productivity. Internal strengths of GE Appliances consist of having a huge research and development workforce which would help in rendering high amount of innovation to the products and processes. Working on the above ends helps the business to uncover newer dimensions and gaining access to newer market areas. Continuous product innovation also helps the company in meeting the enhanced needs of the customers. However speaking on the weakness side, it is observed that GE Appliances in order to tap newer and unexplored market bases often takes the help of external contractors to which the work is outsourced. This process though helps the company in penetrating larger market areas yet it happens to reflect on the loose administrative policies of the company in managing the sales force. Thus the company reflects a considerable weakness pertaining to this dimension wherein the company greatly relies on the external workforce to meet desired ends of tapping external market bases.

Again focusing on another strategic business unit, GE Aviation it is observed that the firm also suffers from considerable strengths and weaknesses. Focusing on the strength aspects the GE Aviation is observed to encourage an environment of sustained innovation through which potential machineries and technological processes are developed. This aspect of the company also helps in diversifying to other areas or new sectors from where the company can earn huge amount of revenues. Internal strengths of the company also help in diversifying into other sectors which would help in product and process innovations. On the contrary GE Aviation suffers from considerable weaknesses in regards to maintaining an external force of contractors who would help in delivering the services to the extended market base. This fact is considered as a weakness of the company for it becomes difficult for the concern to manage this external workforce. Thus through this external workforce helps the company in extending its service to newer market paradigms yet because of its unorganized structure it renders potential problems for the company. The workforce pertaining to this field becomes unmanageable by the centralized department of GE Aviation.

Positioning of GE Appliances and GE Aviation

Positioning Through BCG Matrix

BCG MATRIX- Boston consultancy matrix is a technique to assess the viability of different products or business subunits of the company. It helps in assessing the business portfolio of the company. The way each subunits functions or product functions is very critical for the growth of the company. The BCG matrix is made considering two important variables Market Growth Rate and Relative Market Share. Both variables clearly indicate the potential of each business subunit and products of the company. The growth rate of the industry is measured by the ‘Y’ vertical axis and is expressed in percentage terms. The range is generally set arbitrarily. The overhead of the matrix indicates a range from 0 to 20 percentages with the separation between the higher growth rate and lower growth rate being 10 percentages. Inflation or GNP has a mild influence on the range selected and to accommodate the variation the vertical axis can be altered accordingly. It can be changed to reflect an index in which the line between low and high growth is 1.0. Industries which are expanding rapidly than inflation or GNP can indicate there growth above the line. On the other hand Industries developing at lower rate than the GNP can be marked as below the line.

The horizontal –X-axis indicates a relative market share. The share is calculated in reference to the biggest competitor in the market. The range variation between high and low share is decided arbitrarily. The BCG matrix is divided into four quadrants. The business units or products are represented by circles. The size of the circle representing the division shows the significance of the particular division in group sales.     

bcg matrix              

Source: Donnelly & Linton, 2009, p.31

Ever since Jeffery Immelt has taken the rein of GE under his capable hands, he has been reshuffling the several business units of GE to maximize profit and growth for GE as a whole. GE has been since then investing in its stars and question marks to build upon their growth. The most famous dog in GE portfolio is the GE appliances. The market share has been steadily declining   and the market growth has been if not increasing rapidly but has been getting stagnant.GE appliances have launched many new products to push into the market of modular kitchen. Both market share and growth for GE appliances have been steady and the company’s new strategy is to incorporate new product range to boost the growth and share. The company is also trying to target different market segment with their new product range manufactured by GE appliances. Widening the supply chain to push the sales has also been one of the strategies of GE appliances. The GE appliance was a key player in GE portfolio but has recently been getting sluggish in its market performance.  The GE unit that has been able to maintain its position steadily regardless of the market situation is GE aviation industry. Despite of the declining market growth in Aviation sector GE aviation has been able to maintain the position of the star performer in GE portfolio. The GE aviation recorded a growth of 65%. GE Aviation strategy to build on their service offerings has been profitable for the company. On wing support services and engine exchange services has given GE aviation a new market segment in Aviation industry. These services offered by GE aviation have been able to get GE enough mileage to diversify within the aviation sector. The strategy of using all the resource available and targeting the repair and maintenance industry has been very beneficial for GE aviation. GE aviation also places enough stress in the research and development. This helps GE aviation to set their mark in engine up-gradation sector also.GE Aviation has been one of the top performers for GE in terms of market growth and share. GE Aviation has a huge margin compared to its competitors in Aviation industry. It is leading industry in the Aviation market. GE Aviation also has plans to spread the global operation to capture more market share.  The Aviation industry of GE with GE health care and Transportation has been able to show good result. The lowering of wind pricing and non repeat of Aviation franchise fee did lower the profit margin of GE aviation in the year 2010.

Analysis of The Existing Strategies of The Strategic Business Units and Corporate Level

GE Appliance is a leading manufacturer of significant appliances across the globe. Since the year 1907, the company has introduced advanced appliances to enhance the lives of the people. They have continued legacy today with the energy-conserving innovations such as the Harmony clothes care systems, the Advantium oven and more. The company sets aggressive targets to enhance the energy efficiency of the company operations and reduce the greenhouse gas emissions.  A in today, the organization offers around 400 products including refrigerators, cooking appliances, dryers etc which would meet ENERGY STAR standards. The theory of this organization is less water, less energy and better results.

GE Appliances and Lighting maintains a leading position as the top of the appliance suppliers to the homebuilding industry in US. With the nationwide service of this business unit as well as a well built distribution network, the business unit has been the only business unit which have offered factory service in the respective industry. The company has also introduced an entirely automated approach to delivery an ordering to make the home builder’s jobs pretty much easier. The appliances are of enhanced style with great innovation as well as quality which would help the builders can attract the buyers.

In the year 2010, the company has signed with some prominent new builders which would also include leading home builder in the United States. The company’s operational excellence has enabled the company to offer appliances with well built brand name, style as well as innovation as desired by both the consumers and builders. The business unit sells off the appliances under the brand names of GE, GE Café™, GE Monogram® and GE Profile™ which would offer the buyers a wide range of products to choose from. This product range would offer the right choice for any buyers. GE Appliances have the products for the first homeowners who would be looking for quality as well as dependability the company or the growing families who would be seeking for the features and innovation of profile and Café. Adding to it, the company also caters to the luxury home buyers who desire for the design features as well as the performance of the GE Monogram.

The company provides the home builders with the high tech solutions which would be beneficial to streamline the ordering, delivery as well as the communication processes. Such services would be backed by around 1200 factory service technicians as well as a delivery network spread across the nation. In order to attain continual improvement of the experience of the contract customers of this business unit, the company would be introducing a website, altogether new, for the builders, ‘BuildwithGE.com’. The website is expected to be introduced in the year 2011, at the time of International Builders’ Show at Orlando in Fla. The new site would offer single-family as well as multifamily and the property management remodelers and builders which would offer easy access to the information regarding the information about the company. The products of the company would help its customers to maximize the experience.

The company has unrestrained geographic footprint demands for the appliance suppliers who can efficiently as well as equally cater in all parts of the country. GE does not only have the delivery network as well as nationwide service, but also offers the desired style, innovation as well as brand appeal which are expected to be appreciated by the customers from across the globe.  The operational excellence of GE is well recognized by Interline Brands and Ferguson. Both of these companies service the home building industry. In the year 2010, Interline Brands and Ferguson have awarded GE appliances as their vendor of the year.

GE is being recognized as the leading appliance manufacturer of the nation. The brand is well recognized in both the United States as well as over other countries across the globe. This ensures the builders of quality appliance products which would be known and recognized by the consumers.  This is pretty much reflected in the year 2010 from the ranking of GE as 16th in the Fortune’s list which would include the most admired companies across the globe. Even in the year 2009, the company has been ranked as 4th in Business Week’s best international brands study which was conducted by Interbrand.

GE Appliances has also received the ‘ENERGY STAR Sustained Excellence Award’ for five times. The company has also demonstrated effective leadership among the significant US appliance suppliers which would deliver appliances with enhanced performance and efficiency.

GE Appliances & Lighting has recently launched Home Energy Management (HEM ) business. The company has also stayed ahead of the competition when it comes to develop as well as bring in a series of solution to the market which would help the consumers to manage the entire energy usage in home (GE Appliances and Lighting).

Final Comments and Conclusions

The strategic diagnosis done of GE along with the two strategic business units of the company like GE Appliances and GE Aviation through different strategic models and also through the study of the objectives of the companies show that the firms have enough competencies to counter external market competition. The different strategic models used in the above case like Ansoff Matrix, Strategic Group Maps, SWOT Analysis, Five Generic Strategies and Bowman’s Strategic Clock confers that these firms have the capability to optimally use the existing resources available both human and technological in rendering potential competition to the outside players. Furthermore analysis done on the strategic business units also confers that the company policies of GE relating to the price and quality paradigm help it to gain strategic business position in regards to other potential business competitors like Whirlpool and Samsung. The GE Appliances unit of GE renders potential competition to the existing market players by rendering focus in producing a large plethora of products pertaining to different sectors and also in rendering large amount of offers and discounts to make the prices affordable. Again GE Aviation also works on both the innovation paradigm and in rendering large amount of diversification in other related areas to help in countering potential revenues and in gaining larger markets. Moreover catering to niche market bases also helps the business unit GE Aviation to gain enhanced focus on improving both the productivity and performance parameters of the company. Analysis made based on the strategic business units also show that these business units totally fulfill the business philosophy of the GE Group in total by catering to the needs of innovation and catering to the needs of the large markets. Strategic diagnosis also helps to understand the dynamic position of the business dimensions of GE along with its strategic units in rightfully earning high amount of profits and market shares.

Recommendations

However potential recommendations need also to be poured in to help the strategic business unit act in better ways to help gain a larger number of consumers in both existing and newer market bases. The strategic diagnosis can be further expanded to include the PESTEL analysis which would help in analyzing the external factor conditions pertaining to the parameters of social, economic, technological, legal, environmental fronts. This thorough analysis would help the firms gain better hold in newer markets for it would help render an effective survey of the potential marketing structure. These strategic business units through such analysis would become highly able to render effective handling of the factor conditions which may turn into major obstacles hindering business growth in newer markets. Further apart from rendering insights of the strategic business parameters special focus can also be rendered on the human resources and technological paradigm of the key strategic business units and feasible plan must be rendered for their optimal utilization to confer further organizational productivity. A feasibility analysis could also have been done in regards to GE Aviation to help in the diversification activities. This strategic business unit focusing on niche market bases would function in a more productive fashion if considerable feasibility analysis is conducted of the potential market bases to help in proper allocation of different types of resources and infrastructural facilities. The financial and other effective resources like technological and human resource competence can be better allocated to the different business units by depending on the feasibility analysis. Thus through such analysis the business productivity of the individual units can be highly enhanced to better penetrate to large market areas and thereby gain higher revenues. These set of recommendations thus would considerably help in helping the business units in gaining higher growth in the business domain.  

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