The Robin Hood Army (B) case study looks at the story of Robin Hood and how his strategies and policies can be applied in companies.
Harvard Business Review (119007-PDF-ENG)
July 05, 2018
Case questions answered:
- What was Robin Hood’s business strategy?
- Complete a SWOT Analysis for Robin Hood.
- What are the five competitive forces in this case?
- What are your short-term and long-term recommendations?
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The Robin Hood Army (B) Case Answers
Robin Hood’s Business Strategy
Robin Hood’s revolt against the Sheriff of Nottingham began as a personal crusade and has since evolved into an elaborate band of Merry Men with the campaign to “rob the rich and give to the poor.” In order to accomplish this mission, Robin Hood follows a focused low-cost strategy.
Of the five generic competitive strategies, the focused low-cost strategy was adopted because it complements his band’s strengths and mission. The general mission of the band is to “rob the rich and give to the poor.”
In order to accomplish this, it would be in the best interest of Robin Hood to join the barons in their quest to free King Richard from jail in Austria. Robin Hood’s band has a very focused purpose with no competing interests. They are a local group operating solely in the Sherwood forest. Furthermore, they are not trying to earn money.
In fact, Robin Hood’s band could essentially be considered a nonprofit, as they were formed explicitly to benefit the public good in the local area.
A focused low-cost strategy is attractive when the target market niche is large enough to be profitable and still offers good growth potential. This is exactly the case for Robin Hood. No one else is competing in this niche, as it is dangerous and very focused.
It is also a niche that is costly and difficult to enter. The high barrier to entry in this scenario is a great risk involved. Robin Hood and his band are operating outside the law and could face enormous legal consequences if captured. Therefore, rivals have little or no entry interest in this target segment.
Some of the risks of a focused low-cost strategy are that competitors will find ways to match the focused firm’s capabilities in serving the target niche. In other words, there are many options for substitute organizations and services. The specialized preferences and needs of niche members shift over time toward the product attributes desired by the majority of buyers.
As the attractiveness of the segment increases, it draws in more competitors, intensifying rivalry and splintering segment profits. In Robin’s case, there are many impoverished people looking for relief. They could easily look elsewhere for help if a more promising and organized group came along.
SWOT Analysis for Robin Hood
Robin Hood and his band are in a very…
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