Statement of the problem
The cement industry is rapidly consolidating and stiff competition is prevalent among the top five key players who are fighting for scarce acquisition targets and CEMEX executives should look for ways of accelerating the company grow to new and higher levels.
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Statement of the argument
As opposed to its competitors according to the author, CEMEX has continuously sourced for emerging markets for its products rather than the developed markets. This is because the emerging markets have contributed a larger share of 71% to the sales of the company as compared to 44% experienced from the developed markets. Brand equity and customer loyalty have been key areas that the company’s executives have emphasized in order to raise the company’s profile.
In addition, according to the author integration of information systems in its operations is another crucial step that has been adopted by the company with an aim of making the decision-making process simple. To alleviate post-acquisition challenges the author’s position is that the integration team should move fast to impart management skills to local managers focusing mostly on improving the IT infrastructure to rhyme with that of other subsidiaries.
The author notes that in order to enable the employees to give up their former practices and corporate cultures the management should ensure that its process, functions, and systems do accommodate the diverse needs of the employees the aim being to harmonize the company’s employees to have a common goal of accelerating CEMEX growth rate.
Customer satisfaction has been the top priority of the company and the author’s position is that mechanisms should be put in place to ensure delivery is done within a reasonable time and customer feedback relayed back within a short time in order to enable the order takers to apologize for inconveniences caused to them in order to retain and build customers confidence aimed at propelling the company to greater heights. To ensure that both its employees and the customers are up to date the author’s argument is that e-business is very crucial so that the company’s best practices developed are shared all over the world web-based environment.
This according to the author will enable the company to have numerous growths if well utilized in international acquisitions-business consulting, logistics, and its expansion program aimed at ensuring that the company remains top among its key competitors.
Analysis of Supporting Rationale/Evidence
I agree with the arguments because CEMEX ability to outdo its main competitors is dependent on various crucial issues stated above. Acquisition in emerging markets is an important strategy to adopt because emerging markets are mostly in developing nations where infrastructure is of primary concern hence creating a ready market for its products. Integration of information systems is another important argument because it simplifies procedures involved in procurement and supply of materials and the company products respectively while still saving the time for carrying out these procedures effectively.
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Empowering the employees through training is also an important argument because this enables them to adopt the culture and the vision of the company making them flexible to comply with the company’s goals and objectives. E-business is also a vital step worth adopting to enable the buyers and the suppliers to communicate effectively from every place in the world thus making the transactions easy and fast. I agree with these arguments as they are important in accelerating the company’s growth rate.
Cemex Information capabilities
CEMEX has built its information capabilities and its e-business initiatives with an aim of achieving its vision and also implementation of its evolving business strategies. In 1990, the company launched an executive information system that could consolidate information on various plant performances. This was aimed at ensuring that users could trust the reports generated as reliable for decision making. An internal worldwide database on production, sales, and procurement was developed to enable employees to have access to information about every operation. In 1992, ISDN was installed to replace the former satellite communication system.
In 1993, Cemtec Company was formed as an in-house IT service provider with a local digital dispatch system developed to help in tracking the delivery trucks. This enhanced the speed for delivery within 20 minutes of the scheduled time. The truck driver uses this system to relay back customer responses once they deliver cement, ready mix concrete, aggregate, and clinker to them thus making it possible for the order takers to apologize to the customers for any inconveniences caused to them in time.
Crawford, L. The Global Company, Mexico: Mexico press, 1997.
Dolan, K. Cement Meets the Cyber world, Forbes: Forbes press, 1998.