Instruction to students: This is a group assignment.
Task: BPD2100 International Business Challenge (IBC-2) Assignment
As a team between 5-7 team members, you will develop and write a Business Case for a new international business initiative. Please note that company/ organisation is selected by you or by your lecturer, and subsequently is approved by your lecturer.
The selected company/ organisation and your unique business idea must encompass business initiatives/projects or community based activities or partnerships, etc. that will enhance its immediate or longer term business performance and profitability. Furthermore, your unique business idea for the business case must enhance company/ organisation corporate image as a socially responsible citizen. In addition, the selected organisation must be large enough to have a comprehensive public website and information base (including public access to annual and other financial and non-financial reports), as well as being large enough to support a diverse range of activities.
The focus of your business case and presentation is on justifying the merit and viability of your business case and making a sales pitch to internal funding authorities. You should assume your organisation has allocated a total ‘pool’ of $5m in seed funding for these projects and expects to fund several projects out of the $5m. You are in competition with the other teams for a share of this funding and the senior management will decide how many projects can be funded depending on the merit of the business case and the funding required. It is expected most business cases would require seed funding in the range of $250,000 to $1m. The seed-funding is only available for up to three (3) years and projects requiring more than $1m need to be approved by your lecturer.
You will discuss the nature of the business case in seminar activities,
but it is important that your business case has the following characteristics:
- It must be an example for which your team can reasonably research and develop a business case and ultimately develop a detailed project management plan to implement it. Thus, your business case needs to very clearly defined and quite specific. It needs to be large enough to require significant resources (people and physical resources) and yet not so large or technical to be beyond the capacity of your team to develop a detailed management plan to implement it. For example, any business case that involve design and manufacturing of new products should be considered carefully as to whether there is enough knowledge and expertise in the team to be able to research what is needed to work out the detailed planning and costing information needed to implement the design and manufacturing of a new product.
- It must be an international business initiative which must have an Asian focus. It must cross international borders between Australia and Asia or between two Asian countries or between Asia and the rest of the world. This could include:
- Business expansion from one country to another
- Exporting or importing a new product or service from one country to another
- Modification to an existing service/product offered from one to another country
- It must be the business case which is in-line with the mission and objectives of your organisation and will improve the short or long term bottom line of the business. It must also have an element of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). Thus, it must be expected to make a positive contribution to the chosen organisation’s profit and its image as a responsible corporate citizen by having at least an element of the venture that is in some way good for the community, employees and/or the environment.
Your TEAM is assumed to be part of your nominated organisation. All of your business case team are assumed to be existing graduate “employees” of that organisation, and the cost of employing each member of your team on at least a part time basis is one of the costs to be included in the budget for your project. Your business case needs to demonstrate that the case is in-line with mission and objectives of your organisation and will be potentially good for the business
What your team needs to do to begin researching your business case…..
1. Research the background of your selected organisation and the nature of its business and its mission and objectives and its current operations and its business and CSR activities.
2. Review the organisation’s website and, where available, the annual report and press reports to understand the nature and diversity of its business activities and to see how it already discharges its corporate social responsibilities.
3. Researching for the selected countries that include cultural norms, custom and perceptions, laws, international business reputation, potential risks, government initiatives, political environment, economic environment and free trade agreements.
4. Source and evaluate ideas for your initiative by reading literature on corporate social responsibility and by researching to find examples of similar activities already being undertaken by your organisation, its competitors, or even by other organisations in different industries.
5. Conduct research using academic texts, databases, and relevant government, community, or business based websites into entrepreneurship, business development or corporate social responsibility. This may provide further ideas and information.
6. Research more widely to try to identify possible products, services or community projects which may be appropriate. For example you could do one or more of the following:
• Look for innovative ventures, services, products or events responding to changing demographics or other local or international trends;
• Analyse current or future changes in customer desires and preferences, concerns about climate change, energy costs and availability, ethical, social or cultural issues, etc.
• Conduct a survey, interview organisation managers, industry experts, community leaders, suppliers, etc.
Format of submission…..
In professional life you often will be required to follow a prescribed format, whether prescribed by your own organisation or by a potential client requesting a tender document or a funding organisation. Tenders, consultancy briefs, finance applications and internal project funding applications will often have very specific formats depending on the organisation, so learning to deal with specific format requirements is an important part of the learning objectives of this task.