Ref: IMD-7-1933

Case study

Reference: IMD-7-1933

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Disruptive change at Bossard with

Stefan Michel

By Professor Stefan MichelStefan Michel, Maria Kokontseva, Mikhail Efimov and Céline Relecom

The case describes how Bossard Group, a Swiss family company, originally active in reselling of fastening products, achieved an effective digital transformation through a successful step-by-step evolution of its business model, acquiring valuable knowledge about its clients’ behaviors and needs and implementing new technologies. This real-life example shows how an incumbent company can reinvent itself, not by a one-shot radical transformation, but rather by well-thought-out and ambitious, yet coherent, strategic moves, each building up to effectively leverage the key capabilities created by the previous stages of the company’s evolution. The case also provides an opportunity to discuss the fascinating and real issues Bossard encountered when leveraging IoT and big data to create and capture value. The discussion shows that the use of IoT in Bossard’s supply chain would not be considered a disruption according to Clayton Christensen’s definition. However, if Bossard successfully enters the market for hospital logistics, disruption may occur.

Learning Objective

  • Describe the strategic trajectory of a company over several decades through the business model canvas lens
  • Identify how a new set of technologies (Internet-of-Things) can be adopted and leveraged by a company
  • Explore how these new capabilities offer new avenues for growth
  • Assess different strategic options based on market and company data
  • Elaborate whether disruption occurs or not
Keywords Business Model, Digital Disruption, Internet of Things, Strategy
Settings Global
Bossard Holding, Logistics and Supply Chain, Fasteners, Industrial Goods
Type Field Research
Copyright ©IMD 2017
Language English
Related material Teaching note
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Reference: IMD-7-1933

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Case study

Reference: IMD-7-1933

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