External environmental factors (general, industry and competitor) impacting BHP Billiton and examination of the Australian and international mining industry. Of particular importance are the main opportunities and threats facing the company

Topic : Case Study Analysis: BHP Billiton and Strategic Choices.

Value : 50% of total available marks.

Question:Firstly, read the case study, BHP Billiton and Strategic Choices and the BHP Billiton document, Value Through Performance, Strategic Report 2014 (see below and Moodle).

Secondly, conduct a comprehensive strategic analysis of the BHP Billiton case and the company’s 2014 strategic report. Your analysis should include the areas outlined below.

1. Identification of core strategic management concepts raised in the case and which will be addressed in your analysis, and the main strategic issues which the management of the company has to address (e.g. mergers, diversification, etc.).

2. External environmental factors (general, industry and competitor) impacting BHP Billiton and examination of the Australian and international mining industry. Of particular importance are the main opportunities and threats facing the company.
It is important that you concentrate on a few main elements and explain why they are significant, rather than attempting to analyse all elements. You must support the most significant elements of the external environment by references to the academic literature, business media, industry publications and relevant websites.

3. An evaluation of BHP Billiton’s internal environment, in particular its resources, capabilities and core competencies.
As with the external analysis, you need to try to identify and explain the main issues, rather than list a wide variety of factors. You should address what resources and capabilities contribute to a competitive advantage for the company. Your analysis must be supported by refereed journal articles, texts, relevant information from the case study, company website and the media.

4. An explanation and review of the strategies implemented by BHP Billiton which have led the company to remarkable growth and its current level of performance. Here you should consider relevant aspects of business level strategies, corporate level strategies, merger and acquisition strategies, and international strategies.
Your discussion of the company’s strategic actions must be informed by the academic literature and strategic management theories must be directly applied to the case.

5. An assessment of BHP Billiton’s 2014 decision to split the company into two and what BHP Billiton will need to do to sustain their success in the coming years.
In this section you should provide a sound rationale for supporting or disagreeing with the new direction BHP Billiton plans to take. Be sure that your earlier analyses lead to your rationale.

6. The major results of your case analysis, recommendations with regards to the main strategic issues identified in the introduction, and implications of your case analysis for BHP Billiton, the mining industry and the domestic and global economies.

The first point above should form the basis of your introduction and account for approximately 5% of the word limit. Remember, you are expected to introduce the analysis, not the company. There are no marks for simply retelling the case or facts about the company. Points 2 to 5 should form the body of your essay, and point 6 the conclusion. Your conclusion should account for 10-15% of your word limit, leaving around 80% for the body of the essay.
Your analysis must be presented as a academic formal essay; do not use dot points or direct quotes and do not treat it as a business report or series of short questions………………………………..

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