Michael Waitzer – Reporting Live from the John Molson MBA International Case Competition in Montreal.
A little background – The John Molson MBA International Case Competition – now in it’s 32nd year; 36 teams from around the world – from as far away as Cape Town, and Dublin and as close as Montreal. The teams are divided into 6 divisions, each with 6 teams, and have round robin competition where they present their solution/ideas for business cases.
Day 3, the mid-way point @MBAICC, was a spectacular day for everyone.
It was a Live Case for the 4th challenge and everyone from the students, volunteers, coaches and judges had the opportunity to stretch their minds. I like to think of these challenges as puzzles and this was a good one.
“What measures would you recommend to Novartis Group to improve the
Canadian Divisions overall distribution system?”
Some of the background that was given:
- Novartis, based in Basel, Switzerland, is a multinational pharmaceutical company operating offices in over 100 countries.
- 2011 revenue of $around $60B, generated net income in the 15% range.
- An ambitious growth plan and aggressive stance to be number 1 in the field. Currently in top 3.
5 Product Categories:
- Pharma – patented medicines and vacines
- Sandoz – Generic medicines
- OTC – Over the counter medications/products
- Alcon – Eye Care
- Animal Health – Veterinary Medicines
In Canada, each of the 5 divisions is a stand alone operating company.
Now this was a great opportunity for everyone to think outside the box.
Novartis executives, Serge Maltais and Laura MacNeill, presented the case background and gave some insights into some of the challenges.
Some key issues that they pointed out:
- Novartis is the parent of 5 operating divisions, each a stand alone.
- The divisions have some overlap in customers but also some which are unique to a division.
- Market is shifting in product type and delivery requirements to end users with the change in demographics.
- Currently 2 Divisions operate DC’s in both Calgary and Toronto and the other 3 only operate in Toronto