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MGTS 4481 and MBA 8411: Strategic Management, Spring 2015, Sanjay Goel  

Last Updated: Jan 25, 2015 URL: Print Guide RSS Updates
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Course Guide

MGTS 4481 and MBA 8411  : Strategic Management

For Sanjay Goel
Strategic Management -- MGTS 4481
Spring 2015

Suggested Sources for Company and Industrial Analysis 

Business Insights: Essentials
This is an excellent source for information in periodicals and it has a number on electronic business reference sources as well. Look up companies by name, see periodicals, company histories, company rankings, market share, some financials, company lines of business that are connected to excellent industry overviews.  Use the Advanced Search option to find company histories, company rankings, market share, and industry overviews.

Business Source Premier
Search for periodical information on company name, industry, product, etc.
In our various business periodical indexes, search on company name in one box, and another word or concept in another box…. Concepts like “strategy” or “strategic” or some other word related to your research interests. Business Source Premier is the best place to search and browse popular, trade, and scholarly academic journals. Use the "company profiles" option to search for useful DataMonitor reports by company name.


Passport Database (GMID) from Euromonitor
This is our best source for international marketing information. Here are narrative reports and statistics on consumer products, consumer lifestyles, and retailing structures of 50-60 major nations, including the United States. 4,000 international company reports can be found here too. Use the keyword “Text” search option located on the upper left corner of the screen.

Lexis Nexis Academic
Search for periodicals on topics, and make sure to find a Hoovers In-Depth Company Reports in the “Business” section of the database.

 Mergent Online
Excellent source for 15 years of financial data, company financial ratios, annual reports and other financial data. 

Mintel Reports  Database containing over 600 consumer product and service marketing reports. Most are US and UK based. They are full of amazing detail and analysis. 

More excellent financial data, and make sure to look at current and archived Analyst Research. 

Good company information, and make sure to look at the broad industry overviews. These are excellent. 




Our best source for newspaper information with archives going back over 20 years. This contains the full text of the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times.


New York Times

Wall Street Journal

How to get automatic news alerts

Google Alerts:
Here is where students can go to set up a Google Alert.  If they want to look for news, I suggest they change Result Type to News:

For NewsStand here are the basic steps:
1.  Go to the database NewsStand from the UMD Library website (; Databases tab)
2.  Perform a search.  To search for a specific organization, enter in a search term and change the drop down menu to Company/Organization (ORG).
3.  After search results are returned, and you are happy with your search terms, click on Create Alert.
4.  Create an alert following the four easy steps.
5.  Wait for your alerts to arrive.

Reference USA
Directory of U.S. business. Lists size of company, year established, type of business, credit rating, top personnel, yearly sales and more. Data can be searched by name of company, name of officers, geographic area, SIC, size, revenue or any combination.

Other Suggested Websites

Companies and Financials
This is an annotated list of major sources that can provide information on companies in periodicals, books, special databases, or on the internet, by using search engines like Google. Company websites can be an excellent source of information.


Industry Links
Hundreds of useful free websites categorized by industry.


How to Compare the Financials of One Company to Another


Comparing Companies


Comparing Companies -- Financial Ratios

Sources of Ratios

Our featured Financial Ratio Database


BizMiner offers industry financial analysis benchmarks for over 5,000 lines of business and industry market trends on thousands more. Their market analysis reports are available at the national and local levels down to the zip code. Bizminer is a great resource to use when developing business plans, or for any sort of entrepreneurship initiatives where you need to measure peer performance in an industry. Types of reports:

  • Industry Financial Profiles
  • U.S.  & Local Market Research Reports (includes business failure rates)
  • Area Demographic Profiles
  • Sole Proprietor/Startup Profit & Loss
  • Local Market Vitality Profile

BizMiner Video Tutorials



 Value Chain Analysis 

business statistics

Doing a “Value Chain Analysis” begins with understanding the concept of the “Value Chain.”

Your textbook, or these links may give you some insight:

Strategic Management Insight
Mind Tools

“A value chain is a chain of activities that a firm operating in a specific industry performs in order to deliver a valuable product or service for the market. The concept comes from business management and was first described and popularized by Michael Porter in his 1985 best-seller, Competitive Advantage: Creating and Sustaining Superior Performance.[1]

"The idea of the value chain is based on the process view of organizations, the idea of seeing a manufacturing (or service) organization as a system, made up of subsystems each with inputs, transformation processes and outputs. Inputs, transformation processes, and outputs involve the acquisition and consumption of resources - money, labor, materials, equipment, buildings, land, administration and management. How value chain activities are carried out determines costs and affects profits."

The concept of value chains as decision support tools, was added onto the competitive strategies paradigm developed by Porter as early as 1979. In Porter's value chains, Inbound Logistics, Operations, Outbound Logistics, Marketing and Sales and Service are categorized as primary activities. Secondary activities include Procurement, Human Resource management, Technological Development and Infrastructure.”  (From the Wikipedia)

As a student doing a Value Chain Analysis, you will be doing determined and extensive research in several of our key databases (listed below).  Before you do this you will want to read our company overview reports for your selected company, and our industry overview reports for your company’s industry.

In order to do this analysis well, you will need to be prepared to read many, many articles and financial reports.  Companies often treat their supply chain and value chain information as secrets.  So, you will have to work with secondary sources, reading what journalists and analysts have discovered about these companies.  Primary resources would include S.E.C. 10K Reports

When searching within these databases:

Google Scholar

Lexis Nexis


Business Insights: Essentials

you can try to restrict your search results to a specific company by typing its name into the search box and then do a topic-specfic search by entering the following (sample) search terms or keywords:

  • "Value Chain"  AND  companyname
  • Logistics  AND  companyname
  • Operations AND  companyname
  • “Marketing and Sales” AND  companyname
  • Service AND companyname
  • "Supply Chain" AND companyname
  • Procurement  AND  companyname
  • Purchasing  AND  companyname
  • “Human Resource Management” AND companyname
  • “Technological Development” AND companyname
  • Infrastructure AND companyname

You may also want to try these keywords as well:

Cost Advantage
Differentiation Advantage
Quality Control
Dealer support
Customer’s value
Inbound logistics
Outbound logistics

You may want to try searching for other related words as well.

In addition, you should look up the company’s 10K reports, in this database:

Mergent Online

Go into Mergent Online, search for your company by name or ticker symbol
On the results page, click on the “Reports” tab, and then select “Annual Reports.”

Now you can view 10K and Annual reports in PDF format. Once you are in the PDF documents you can type  CTRL  F for a search box, where you can type in your keywords.

Keep in mind that you may find many articles and documents that contain your company name and keywords but they may not provide the information you seek.  In other cases, you may be able to piece together useful bits of information from several articles.

Good luck on your research !!!

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