Leo is a 50-50 joint venture that produces and sells electron microscopes. It is owned by Carl Zeiss of Germany and Leica of Switzerland, and consists of the small businesses that each parent company had in this area. The new company faces formidable challenges, as it is dominated in the market by Japanese competitors. Neither business under the management of its parent company was earning a satisfactory return. The case is written from the viewpoint of Karl Kalbag, general manager of the joint venture, at a time when it is about six months old. He faces a real challenge in bringing his inherited management teams together, and also in crafting a strategy that will win in the market. The issues are to do with managing change, merging cultures and creating strategy.
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