Academic journal article Journal of the International Academy for Case Studies

International Products Ltd *

Academic journal article Journal of the International Academy for Case Studies

International Products Ltd *

Article excerpt


The primary subject matter of this case concerns marketing.. It has a difficulty level of five (appropriate for senior level). The case is designed to be taught in one class hour and is expected to require two hours of outside preparation by the students.


This case deals with a Thailand producer and marketer of clothing products that is locked in a struggle to produce quality products efficiently and sell them in sufficient quantity, both domestically and abroad. One individual, the president of the company, is responsible for developing corporate strategy. He is aided in this process by the advice of a consultant whom he has retained. The firm has been in business for a considerable time period and has enjoyed some degree of success. However, management is currently involved in decisions regarding whether or not to employ a company (rather than a private) brand, how to control the channel of distribution, how to generate products which meet consumer desires, and possible additions to the product line. These decisions are complicated by somewhat unstable economic, social, supplier, competitive, and legal/political environments which confront the clothing industry in both Thailand and in other countries where the products are sold.


Mr. David Pongsan, President of International Products Ltd., is a business manager from a developing country (Thailand) who has been successful in creating a profitable firm largely through his own efforts. Further, he has been able to maintain his achievements during periods of national economic turmoil. However, the problem that he must now address is how to survive and prosper in an increasingly competitive global market.

One late evening, while relaxing after work in his luxurious home, Mr. Pongsan sat at his desk and reflected on the past. He began to mentally compile his business history, focusing on how he had built up the company through continual planning and determination. Most of the major difficulties, which had arisen in previous years, seemed to be under control. However, expected future competition brought about by globalization trends would require considerable deliberation on his part. He decided to confer with his business consultant.

During the first week of March, 2002, Mr. Pongsan invited the consultant to his home to share a pot of coffee and to exchange ideas about how they could prepare company strategy for survival in an increasingly uncertain market.

At the time, Mr. Pongsan seemed to be very eager to chat about his past and present efforts. The highlights can be summed up as follows:


This man formed the enterprise at the age of thirty, while holding only a high school education. (Since that time he has continued his studies by enrolling in a marketing bachelor's degree program based in the Philippines). Previously, he had accumulated valuable experience in the textile business as a result of working for his father for more than 20 years.

During childhood years, Mr. Pongsan had assisted his father in operating a textile manufacturing firm. In the process, he had acquired numerous skills, such as, the ability to carefully purchase a variety of needed raw material cloth products in the Sampeng Market, which is located in Bangkok, the capital and largest city in Thailand. This involvement was invaluable in developing an understanding of the functioning of a firm in this industry. Part of this experience involved making the acquaintance of export agents, who ordered childrens' clothing, nightgowns, and undergarments-the main products of his father's organization. At this time, his responsibilities included marketing, contacting exporting agents, and acquiring insights and intelligence on exporting.

In 1972, this aspiring businessman formed a company which sold finished clothing products, mainly undergarments, to his father's business for resale. …

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