Case Study

Sony Broadcast and Professional Europe (R): Becoming a virtual company

22 pages
August 2000
Reference: IMD-6-0221

In April 1997, senior management at Sony Broadcast and Professional Europe (BPE) was focused on making the “virtual company” concept a reality. BPE was moving away from a confederation of national sales companies towards a number of geographically dispersed business teams serving all of Europe. An infrastructure was being put in place to support the teams. Immediate operational opportunities and challenges lay in the implementation of SAP System R/3 due to go live in a matter of weeks and the radical re-engineering of BPE’s supply chain. Key considerations were the increased use of air freight between Sony factories in Japan and BPE; the consolidation of BPE inventories in fewer locations; and the choice of a global logistics provider to partner with Sony BPE in the direct delivery of BPE products from its distribution centres to dealers within Europe. A novel feature of the case is its suitability for use as a vehicle to discuss the transformation of bricks and mortar distribution systems to those needed to support e-business.

Virtual Company, SAP Implementation, Direct Delivery, Broadcasting, Production Management, Operations Management
April 1997
Field Research
© 2000
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