Ankush Brahmavar

  • IkeaA corporate strategy article by Thunderbird students Marquita Blanding, Ankush Brahmavar, Tim Clarke, Jennifer Garcia, Stephanie Sharma and Jason Teague

    With approximately 500 million young adult consumers in India[1] and an affluent growth rate of 13% equaling USD 203 billion,[2] it would appear that Sweden-based IKEA can’t afford to delay its entrance into India any longer. A country that is accustomed to paying a higher price for the niceties that are afforded around the world, India has an educated, innovative, resource-rich base ready to ‘spend.’

    In January 2012, the Indian government amended FDI restrictions to allow foreign companies to own 100% of their retail ventures in the country.  This was a welcome change from the earlier ownership cap of 51%, as it paved the way for global retail chains like IKEA, Wal-Mart, and others to have full control of their Indian operations. But the market opening came with new restrictions that many retailers view as obstacles to its investment, including a requirement that foreign companies obtain at least 30% of their products from domestic small companies and cottage industries. In light of this rule, IKEA has expressed that local sourcing requirements were “concerning” and more easily met by food retailers such as Carrefour than a single-brand company like IKEA with global product ranges.[3]

  • Whole Foods global strategyBy Amanda Roberson, Amy Zelezen, Ankush Brahmavar, Boris Pilipenko, Kinjal Gandhi and Matt Werner

    Cincinnati resident Roberta Mand is spoiled for choice every time she steps out to buy groceries. Depending on whether she want to buy steaks, sushi, staples or macadamia-encrusted tuna, she heads to Costco, Wal-Mart, Kroger, Whole Foods or the local farmer’s market, all of which are nearby. Roberta’s array of choices illustrates the ever-evolving dynamics of the grocery industry. In this extremely competitive environment, all major players must continuously strategize to maintain a strong presence. A look at Whole Foods Market reveals how this increased competition can leave a company at a strategic crossroads. Since its beginnings in 1980, Whole Foods has been a leader in supplying organic and natural foods, and for years enjoyed its role as the only store catering to this niche market. However, since then other major players have identified this growing segment and now also carry lines of organic and natural foods.