The primary purpose of this case is to teach and/or integrate key strategic planning frameworks used during the strategic management process, including those used in external analysis (i.e., industry, suppliers, customers, and competitors) and internal analysis (i.e., resources, capabilities, and firm value chain). It also introduces a framework for strategy formulation at the business-level (i.e., cost-leadership, differentiation, and focused strategies). This case is applied for teaching strategic planning and business-level strategy formulation. It is particularly useful to illustrate strategic planning in the Chinese context.
The case introduces the formation of Branded Lifestyle Holdings Ltd. (Braded Lifestyle), an Asian apparel retail company that emerged from Fung Retailing Limited’s acquisition of Hong Kong–listed Hang Ten Group. With five apparel brands (i.e., Hang Ten, H:Connect, Arnold Palmer, LEO, and Roots), Branded Lifestyle had been profitable in most of its markets in Asia (e.g., Hong Kong, Taiwan, South Korea, Malaysia, and Singapore). However, it had struggled in China, reporting annual loses until its acquisition in 2011. Ramanathan Dilip Shivkumar (Dilip) was appointed as the new Managing Director of Global Brands of Branded Lifestyle in 2014. Looking at the evolving apparel industry in China and reviewing the company’s weak performance over the past years, Dilip needed to develop a strategic plan to turnaround the company’s operations and build a strong and sustainable business in the Chinese market.