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

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Analysis of shipping logistics management for an e-commerce firm

Date created: 
2006
Abstract: 

Established in 1999, ABC is an online wholesaler of building materials, focusing on hardwood and laminate flooring, tile, stone countertop, roofing, and decking. Initial growth within the company was a result of key relationships within their supply chain, ownership of the distribution component of the supply chain, and a proprietary logistics management system (LMS.) The company plans further development of this system, which reduces internal distribution costs as well as freight costs to the customer through optimization of several shipping processes. ABC believes that this system will be a first in the market for such technologies. Additionally, there may be an opportunity to commercialize the system as a separate business venture. Although this may present new opportunities, the company must consider the impact on its core business and competitive advantage. Any new initiative should be carefully analyzed based on a consistent alignment with the company’s cost-leadership strategy.

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

Strategic analysis of a factory built home opportunity in Western Canada

Date created: 
2006
Abstract: 

A strategic analysis was completed to determine the feasibility of initiating a factory-built home manufacturing facility in Western Canada. We completed an industry analysis, internal analysis, an opportunity analysis and provide a recommendation on how to proceed. The results indicate a factory built facility is economically feasible if a market of 60 houses per year can be established. The competitive advantages of factory built homes over on-site homes indicate a better quality home can be produced for thirty to forty percent less cost. The value-chain analysis indicates the margin can be most significantly increased during the marketing, sales and engineering phase. The profitability of a firm improves as the size of the factory increases and if it continues to operate at capacity. The factory built home construction opportunity is very promising. A recommendation to pursue this opportunity is suggested.

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

Strategic analysis of a resort based retail operation.

Date created: 
2006
Abstract: 

Terwiel Holdings is a small retail business operating at Sun Peaks Resort, a four-season resort in the interior of British Columbia. The business is facing the decision as to whether to grow, stay the course, or sell. This project is a strategic analysis of the business, including an organizational overview, an external analysis, an internal analysis, a financial analysis and an identification of strategic alternatives for Terwiel Holdings. The outcome of this analysis is that Terwiel Holdings should continue to operate at its current size and structure, while improving and fine-tuning the information management and financial management aspects of the business. Improvements in these areas will provide the foundation from which future growth can take place, or upon which a solid exit strategy can be built.

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

Evaluating three alternatives for proposed electrical transmission lines to southern Vancouver Island

Author: 
Date created: 
2006
Abstract: 

This study evaluates three proposed alternative electrical transmission projects to Vancouver Island in terms of financial and non-financial characteristics. The three proposals differ in financing, technology, route, and regulatory frameworks. For establishing reliability and meeting future electricity needs, the Vancouver Island Transmission Reinforcement (VITR) Project is the least costly alternative, but will likely not be operational to meet the required in-service date and may encounter continued opposition from special interest groups. The Juan de Fuca (JDF) Project could likely be completed on time, and provide both reliability benefits and export potential. A preliminary financial analyses indicate that the VITR and JDF Projects are complementary; if both projects are constructed, net present value of the benefit to BC Ratepayer/Taxpayers is between $50 and $450 million. The JDF Project would also allow BC Hydro to avoid transmission congestion near Seattle, and thus increase the efficiency of electricity trade with the Pacific Northwest.

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

A strategic analysis of market opportunities for a portable power provider

Date created: 
2006
Abstract: 

This paper examines stated strategies and market opportunities for a distributor / manufacturer of portable power generators. Analysis of proposed customer segments reveals aggregating segments using Product-Customer Matrices will make marketing strategies more efficient and sales efforts more effective. Demand analysis identifies customers with potential derived demand to be more valuable long-term than immediate direct demand. Supply chain analysis confirms an opportunity to establish a differentiated brand will provide competitive advantage. Value chain analysis shows core competencies must be built in maintaining relationships, primarily with outsourcing partners and a wide customer base. Sales force management must built cohesive and cooperative sales teams, with experience in team sales more important than product or market knowledge which can be learned. Measures such as Balanced Scorecard will help align goals with profitable strategy. Finally, cash influx is needed to provide supply chain security and establish needed sales proficiencies in key geographic markets.

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

In search of loyalty: private label packaging solutions for the retail grocery industry

Date created: 
2006
Abstract: 

The U.S. corrugated packaging industry is highly concentrated, competitive and mature, facing only modest growth in the United States. The objective of this paper is to understand the opportunity that private label grocery products present to the corrugated packaging industry and how Weyerhaeuser Company might increase demand of corrugated boxes. Industry analyses of both the U.S. retail and corrugated packaging industry are provided in conjunction with summaries of major firms in the respective industries. Private label programs are a point of differentiation in the retail industry with implications to national brand manufacturers and the corrugated packaging industry. The use of SWOT analysis provides an insight into Weyerhaeuser and presents a number of opportunities to improve market share in corrugated packaging.

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

Extreme mill make over

Author: 
Date created: 
2006
Abstract: 

This paper examines the operation and performance of a lumber mill. Generating positive cash flow and remaining profitable at coincident low points of the economic and seasonal cycle are major challenges. Mill metrics were benchmarked using industry data which revealed performance gaps in costs, production rate, quality and lumber recovery. Economies of scale were investigated for lumber manufacturing. Capacity utilization for the site empirically determined that the unit was operating at close to its minimum cost, and this was an optimum operating level under poor market conditions. Opportunities to improve efficiencies and decrease waste through organizational changes, technological upgrading, and techniques of lean manufacturing are outlined. These changes raise the mill to a first quartile level generating positive cash flow at the bottom of the lumber economic cycle.

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

A strategic analysis of a product in the health care sector

Date created: 
2006
Abstract: 

ImmunoTech Inc. is a small biotech company with three drug candidates in early drug development. Their lead compound for mild to moderate psoriasis is in late preclinical testing. Drug development is an expensive process with increasing capital requirements at each stage. The purpose of this report is to evaluate ImmunoTech’s psoriasis compound in respect to the attractiveness and competitiveness of the industry. With additional market and customer information, ImmunoTech can better understand the industry and its own capabilities. The psoriasis market offers great opportunities for ImmunoTech. The analysis recommends that ImmunoTech out-license IMM130 at an early stage rather in a later stage. As a result, ImmunoTech minimizes the risk involved in drug development. With more drug candidates in the pipeline, the company minimizes the overall risk in drug discovery. This creates future opportunities for Immunotech to become a successful drug discovery company.

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

A Q1 mindset towards bulk lubricant distribution within British Columbia

Date created: 
2006
Abstract: 

This research paper explores alternative bulk lubricant delivery options to create efficiencies within the current structure and alignment with Petro-Canada’s strategy for first quartile operations. Petro-Canada strives for Q1 operations that allow its cost structure to be competitive. The current bulk lubricant delivery system within British Columbia is an opportunity to increase efficiencies and lower total costs associated with distribution of bulk lubricants to end users. The complexity of the current system increases inefficiencies and there are many opportunities to resolve this situation to allow for efficiencies and effectiveness throughout the delivery system. This project will review internal operational impact of alternatives proposed as well as the external impact. The overall intent of the project is to simplify and increase efficiency with the current process. It will allow Petro-Canada to improve alignment throughout their entire lubricant division and is a strategic fit with their overall strategy to improve controllable costs.

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

Strategic analysis of Integrated ProAction Corp.

Date created: 
2006
Abstract: 

Integrated ProAction Corp (IPAC) has operated in the forestry consulting industry since 1992, offering diverse services to four primary market segments. The forestry consulting industry has become less attractive since 2002. Profits at IPAC are down in 2006, and sustainable shareholder value is compromised. A new marketing strategy is required. Labor is the most important input. Appropriate human resources policies are needed to support and implement the business and marketing strategies. This project evaluates the dynamics of the forestry consulting industry and assesses industry attractiveness using Porter’s five forces model. Four business options are considered relative to future succession plans. SWOT analysis drives a marketing strategy. Corporate objectives, competencies and key resources are defined. Sensitivity analysis validates the chosen marketing strategy, and is used to approximate the resultant potential sale value of the company.

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