Business - Theses, Dissertations, and other Required Graduate Degree Essays

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Strategic analysis of a bulk terminal

Date created: 
2005
Abstract: 

The paper entitled "A Strategic Analysis of a Bulk Terminal" investigates the effectiveness of Pacific Coast Terminal's competitive strategy and how the company's processes align with that strategy. The paper begins with a brief description of the company. An industry analysis is completed describing the environment Pacific Coast Terminal operates in. Next, an analysis of the company is conducted providing information relating to its strategy, services, structure, and financial state. Following this description is an analysis of major issues facing Pacific Coast Terminals and recommendations that address these issues. The company has issues in employee experience, project management skills, information technology, employee skill levels, safety, capacity and logistics, customer relations, reliance on high volumes, and public relations. Overall the company operates successfully and requires the issues that are outstanding are relatively minor. Pacific Coast Terminals will continue to be successful without implementing any changes.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
Faculty of Business Administration - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Research Project (M.B.A.)

Strategic analysis of Garfield Productions Ltd.

Author: 
Date created: 
2005
Abstract: 

This project presents an analysis of an emerging industry in Canada - Event Production. In particular, it explores the business model of Garfield Productions, a oneyear- old event production company. This company started with a small capital investment and has managed to break-even within the first year of operation. The management team has decided to reinvest the profit generated. This project provides a systematic study on industry trends and provides an analysis of how the company can effectively expand its business. This project starts by identifjring the emerging event production industry. It follows with an industry analysis to identify the key success factors. It suggests the strategic alternatives based on the key success factors and analyses them by an internal analysis of the company. The project concludes that Garfield Productions should open a wedding planning division in the short term. Once the company is firmly established in British Columbia, and upon building up enough capital and financial resources, the company should expand geographically to Hong Kong and become an international event production company.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
Faculty of Business Administration - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Research Project (M.B.A.)

A strategic analysis of U.S. development opportunities for spectrum seniors housing

Author: 
Date created: 
2007
Abstract: 

Spectrum Seniors Housing is interested in expanding its development operation into the United States. This project investigates its opportunity by using Porter’s Five Forces Framework to analyze the industry and by assessing Spectrum’s internal capabilities. Various market entry modes are considered and recommendations provided. The U.S. marketplace appears promising due to a growing aging population, strong occupancy rates and an insufficient supply of housing. However, it presents challenges which include a shortage of construction labour and affordable land. Spectrum is also challenged by the transferability of some of its operating competencies. Despite the challenges, the opportunities support expansion. Spectrum should enter the United States with a mixed mode approach of establishing itself as a sole venture subsidiary and then partnering on individual projects through joint venture company creation. It should seek partners with complementary capabilities and initiate ten projects as soon as possible in locations where project returns are greatest.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
M
Department: 
Faculty of Business Administration - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Research Project (M.B.A.)

A critical analysis of a credit union's strategic plan

Author: 
Date created: 
2007
Abstract: 

Coast Capital Savings (CCS) is the second largest credit union in Canada. CCS has a 10-year strategic plan to grow to one million members, $20 billion in assets, and to have operations in all ten provinces in Canada by the year 2012. CCS plans to achieve this growth in two ways: 1) organically, with innovative products and services, and 2) through mergers and acquisitions. This paper analyzes the five-year progress of the strategic plan, since 2002, and offers strategic alternatives and recommendations based on research and trends in the credit union and banking industry. The paper proposes two strategic alternatives: mergers and acquisitions, and enhanced technology. As part of the internal analysis of the organization, the second alternative was modified to propose a strategic alliance with CommunityLend, a peer-to-peer, Internet lending company. The paper recommends that CCS find a suitable merger partner and initiate the alliance with CommunityLend.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
N
Department: 
Faculty of Business Administration - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Research Project (M.B.A.)

Strategic analysis of the storage division in a fabless semiconductor company

Date created: 
2007
Abstract: 

Since the 2000 technology market crash, CommIC, a fabless semiconductor company, has been focused on diversifying their integrated circuit business away from telecommunications and into other markets. One of the markets that CommIC has been focussed on and successful in is the storage market. The firm entered the storage market with a single product targeted around the company’s core strength and won 60 percent market share. CommIC would like to further invest in their storage Products Division and dominate the entire storage market. This paper presents the storage market, analyzes the key success factors and presents a strategy for CommIC to gain dominant storage market share. CommIC’s internal capabilities are analyzed against the required strategy and any capability gaps are identified. This paper ends with a recommended action plan for CommIC to successfully execute on and become market leader in the storage market.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
N
Department: 
Faculty of Business Administration - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Research Project (M.B.A.)

Strategic analysis of one45 software inc.

Author: 
Date created: 
2007
Abstract: 

One45 software inc. is a software company based in Vancouver, Canada, that serves the medical education administration (MEA) market. The firm is the de facto standard MEA software vendor in Canada and is poised for a new stage of growth: achieving significant traction in the US. This paper determines the feasibility of this goal and the best route forward by conducting a strategic analysis. US MEA represents an attractive, if time-sensitive, business opportunity. The main industry key success factors concern product quality and customer service, two areas in which one45 outperforms its US competitors. In addition, barriers to entry are low. However, the firm has a deficiency in US marketing and sales experience. Therefore, it is the recommendation of the paper that one45 implement a US-based Sales and Marketing Department, headed by an individual with experience in US MEA, with the goal of rapidly capturing significant US market share.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
N
Department: 
Faculty of Business Administration - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Research Project (M.B.A.)

Comparison of the principal component-based fixed income hedging strategies

Date created: 
2007
Abstract: 

This study analyses and compares various Principal Component-based methods of fixed income security immunization. We show that the methods are effective in terms of reducing the volatility of the security returns; however, none of the Principal Component-based techniques outperforms the mean-variance optimization. We conclude that the Principal Component-based immunization is more effective when including all the available underlying securities in the portfolio instead of hedging with the limited number of selected underlying securities. We show that the Principal Component-based methods are not effective for hedging short-term securities. We conclude that application of the Principal Component-based immunization techniques requires balancing the contrary effects of the model error and the estimation error on the results.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
D
Department: 
Faculty of Business Administration - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
M.A. (M.B.A.)

Strategic safety alternatives for Alcan Kitimat works

Author: 
Date created: 
2005
Abstract: 

This project is a strategic analysis of the safety strategy at Alcan Kitimat Works Smelter (KWS) in Kitmat, BC. The objective of this project is to develop a list of strategic alternatives and recommendations for improving safety culture and safety performance at KWS. Superior safety performance has been recobmized by the industry as a competitive advantage. Positive safety results impact operating costs and improve gross margins by reducing costs directly related to injuries such as WCB premiums and fines. Asset turnover increases by eliminating production downtime and equipment damage resulting. Both improvements will increase return on equity and maximize value to shareholders. Nearly half of KWS's lost time accidents are related to lack of awareness and unrecognized risk. The current safety culture inclucles a high risk tolerance; a mindset that needs to change. Recommendations are made to facilitate this cultural change along with other identified cultural and safety performance issues.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
Faculty of Business Administration - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Research Project (M.B.A.)

An analysis of 24-Seven’s retail strategy for North America

Date created: 
2007
Abstract: 

24-Seven is the largest convenience store operator in North America. This analysis will determine if the current strategy is the best choice for the company. Key characteristics of the current strategy include a decentralized structure, highly autonomous store operators, and a focus on fresh food. A review of the strategy reveals a number of weaknesses. As a result, the company is struggling to increase profitability and maximize operational efficiency. The convenience store industry is very competitive. Low profitability and intense rivalry are characteristic of the industry. A low operating cost strategy is recommended for 24-Seven. The conversion of corporate stores to franchise operations is a key element of this strategic alternative. Increased centralization and tighter operational controls are also essential. Successful implementation will require a variety of strategic adjustments. However, this strategy will enable the company to leverage its large network of stores to become more profitable and efficient.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
N
Department: 
Faculty of Business Administration - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Research Project (M.B.A.)

Dual degree strategy for the faculty of business administration

Date created: 
2007
Abstract: 

International education contributes approximately $2 billion annually to British Columbia’s (B.C.) economy, with more than 150,000 international students enrolled in private and public institutions across the province. Competition is fierce in B.C. between three main universities and many colleges. In order to recruit and retain students for international programs, Simon Fraser University must create innovative programming that will attract students. By collaborating with other universities, a competitive advantage can be gained. This paper analyzes a proposal for a dual degree between the Faculty of Business at Simon Fraser University and the Faculty of Business at Zhejiang University in Hangzhou, China. The dual degree will provide students with an education in business administration, while providing the opportunity for increased cross-cultural understanding and the acquisition of foreign language skills.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
N
Department: 
Faculty of Business Administration - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Research Project (M.B.A.)