You are encouraged to collaborate with your BSG teammates in developing your solutions…

I need to finish this paper before following Monday.

During our class discussion much of the time was spent on comparing the differences between Emirate Airlines, and Southwest Airlines. These two airlines are unusual in that they have consistently made a profit even during the hard times of 2008 evidencing a sound and consistent strategy. The two airlines have obvious differences in the way their strategy addressed the market. The following table lists some of the comparisons we described:


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Hub and spoke

Point to point

Types of planes

3 distinct types

Only one plane


Single party

Publically traded

Type of flyer

Wealthy & likes style, high WTP

The bus rider


Long hauls

Short hauls

Air freight

#3 in the world


Human organization

No union; low pay & limited benefits

Union, higher pay and US style benefits

But these are all characteristics. They are not the underlying strategy.

Aware that Tim Clark is nearing retirement, the Board of Directors is selecting some candidates as his potential successor. The person chosen will understudy under Clark until his retirement date. One of the leading candidates, an outsider not currently employed by Emirates Air, has asked you to prepare a report highlighting where you would advise the company to go over the next five years. You will have to define what you see to be the major problems on the horizon, and using the material in the table listed above and any other ideas you might have about characteristics of Emirates Air. You should use those characteristics to define what you think Emirates Air’s strategy is. As you do this you will want to bring into your report the key strategic ideas Magretta has written about concerning Michael Porter’s discussion of sustainable strategic advantage. You will, of course, tie Magretta’s chapters on a tailored value chain, trade-offs, fit and continuity as it applies to Emirates Air.

As you know executives like you to keep it short, to highlight the problem first, and to give your recommendation early in the paper. Your report should be about five pages long and your analysis should be based purely on the material about Emirates Air in the case study. There is no need to look up anything outside of the case (except Magretta and any material you choose to use from the Southwest case) when preparing your report.

You are encouraged to collaborate with your BSG teammates in developing your solutions. Each person, however, must write his or her own finished report. The paper should be typed and turned in in hard copy at the beginning of class on June 11.
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