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NUCOR IN 2009 I. DISCUSSION QUESTIONS, CASE INTRODUCTION AND KEY POINTS Introduction The case is about Nucor’s history and expansion in the US Steel industry. The case spans a 66 year period from 1943-2009 detailing Nucor’s success and growth in the face of the volatile steel commodity market. Nucor’s success can primarily be attributed to its strong management philosophy which centers around: judicious corporate spending, aligning incentives throughout levels of company employees, and fearless innovation and acquisitions in order to remain competitive. The key challenges that Nucor faces in 2009 include: environmental concerns, shrinking demand and lower prices for steel, the consolidating steel industry and a need to continue acquisitions in order to sustain economies of scale, and the integration of newly acquired, unionized Harris. Summary of key learning points and strategic issues 1. Understanding the challenges associated with a commodity industry 2. Flexibility in the face of a volatile market with high competition and many uncontrollable external factors 3. The role of acquisitions in company growth 4. The importance of core values that offer a competitive edge (cost controls, incentive plans, and corporate culture ) as well as growth without compromising core values 5. Adjusting business-level strategy in light of rivalry. 6. Growth strategy through acquisition Discussion Questions 1. Perform a STEEP analysis to understand the general environment facing Nucor. How will Nucor be affected by external factors? 2. Use Porter’s Five Forces Model to analyze the steel industry in the US. Given this analysis, is the industry attractive or unattractive? 3. The steel industry is a commodity industry. Given the example of Nucor, what does it mean to be a part of a commodity industry? What are the key challenges? 4. Who are Nucor’s main competitors and how does Nucor measure up against these competitors? 5. What are the main capabilities of Nucor? Does Nucor have a core competence? 6. Create a SWOT analysis to understand Nucor’s strengths and weaknesses. Does Nucor have a sustainable competitive advantage in the steel industry? If so, what is the source? What about Nucor’s evolution and current business strategy may pose problems going forward? 7. What is the role does acquisition play in Nucor’s success or failures. What are the benefits and challenges associated with acquisitions? Do you believe that Nucor is making sound business decisions or growing too quickly? Support your beliefs with qualitative evidence and financial analysis from the case. N U C O R | 1
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NUCOR IN 2009 II. EXTERNAL ENVIRONMENT ANALYSIS Summarize the external environment, including conditions in the general, industry, and competitor environments. a.
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This note was uploaded on 10/21/2011 for the course ACCOUNTING 101 taught by Professor Fenjimo during the Spring '11 term at College of Southern Idaho.

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