Case Studies

Selected case studies of our work:

CASE STUDY 1: A Strategic Business Plan for a new, University-administered Renewable Energy research institute with multi-million dollar funding

Mandate:

  • To develop an action-oriented business plan that would help drive a multi-million dollar-funded renewable energy start-up toward fiscal success and sustainability.

Action:

  • Conducted multiple in-depth management interviews to unearth problems and issues faced by client organization.
  • Studied and understood in detail University’s funding policies with respect to research departments/institutes on and off campus; studied and understood client’s revenue and expense models, industrial research contract model, production capacity and other strengths and weaknesses.
  • Performed market analyses including competitive analysis; business model analysis of global best-in-class research institutes in Europe, United States and Canada; and worked with management to develop a viable business model that was acceptable to all stakeholders.
  • Conducted in-depth interviews with client’s key customers, including Syncrude, the world’s largest producer of synthetic crude oil, and FPInnovations, a leading research institute in the Canadian forest sector.
  • Developed marketing plan including objectives, strategies, tactics and a detailed action plan to achieve objectives; developed financial (revenue and expenses) forecasts for 3 years.

Results:

  • The business plan was very well received by the client and all stakeholders (including Dean of Engineering and other University leaders).
  • Client has seen significant success since the engagement and is using the business plan to drive the next phase of its growth.

CASE STUDY 2: A Presentation Business Plan for a global digital media & entertainment startup

Mandate:

  • To understand and evaluate the client’s vision for a global, multi-million dollar digital media & entertainment company and develop a comprehensive business plan and presentation slides for angel investors.

Action:

  • Conducted in-depth interviews with client to understand company and product vision (web and mobile entertainment applications) and to determine scope of the undertaking.
  • Performed thorough secondary research on the entertainment industry and interactive advertising industry; performed competitor feature analysis for 12 different competitors; spoke with industry stakeholders in North America and Asia to determine investment required and expected burn rate of the new business.
  • Liaised with digital media expert on product development and costing issues; on developing a viable advertising business model; and on strategy for product rollout.
  • Created a comprehensive financial model to test various forecast scenarios for the web and mobile application businesses by using relevant assumptions including number of acquisitions, visits/month, page views, impressions, downloads, cost per thousand impressions (CPM) in three continents, and Pay-per-click (PPC) conversion rate.
  • Collaborated with client’s CFO to determine most favourable corporate structure, and developed 5-year pro forma income statements, cash flow statements and balance sheets.
  • Distilled complex business case into 10 simple PowerPoint slides (the Guy Kawasaki approach!) for angel investor presentation. Accompanied client to investor meeting to assist in delivering pitch.

Results:

  • Delivered a comprehensive Presentation Business Plan that was very well received by both client and investor; seed funding round in progress.

CASE STUDY 3: A Strategic Business Plan for a rapidly growing Outsourced Services company

Mandate:

  • Springboarders was tasked with developing an action-oriented business plan that would enable the launch a new outsourced services business concept in North America.

Action:

  • Internal Assessment: Performed thorough assessment of the company’s history, internal operations, financial goals and sales objectives by analyzing company’s financial and operational data and by conducting in-depth management interviews.
  • External Assessment: Reviewed and analyzed industry data, market research reports and ongoing thoughts of industry experts via industry association publications, newsletters and blogs. Conducted over 10 in-depth interviews with industry stakeholders in North America to understand issues, trends, challenges and opportunities facing the industry.
  • Conducted workshops with management to develop the company’s new Value Proposition (for clients and internal stakeholders) and Positioning statement based on results of internal and external research.
  • Developed a comprehensive, monthly financial plan for the new business, keeping in mind management’s financial goals, sales forecasts and fixed and variable costs associated with the new business.

Results:

  • Developed new strategic direction for the company by articulating strategic imperatives, key initiatives (prioritized) and actions. The result was a comprehensive roadmap that laid out key action steps that needed to be taken to implement the new strategy. The final output included tasks; financial and human resource requirements; and specific timelines for implementation.
  • Very well received by client’s top management, which used the roadmap to bring the new strategy to life.


CASE STUDY 4: A Market Research and Strategy project for an enterprise software vendor targeting the Pharmaceutical industry in North America

Mandate:

  • To conduct primary and secondary research related to client’s software product and markets, and to build a product roadmap, positioning and messaging statements.

Action:

  • Conducted in-depth interviews with client team to understand the industry, market, competitors, strategies, strengths and weaknesses.
  • Conducted secondary research by examining and analyzing data from websites, market research reports, etc. to understand key success factors, market segments, key competitors, etc.
  • Researched profiles and reached out to over 150 Information Technology Directors (potential interviewees) in large and small companies in the Pharmaceutical and Biotechnology industries across the United States and Canada; used LinkedIn’s InMail feature and personal connections along with strategic incentives to secure interviews.
  • Conducted 30-minute, one-on-one market research interviews with 17 IT Directors to unearth insights into industry trends, pain points, buyer profiles, buyer behaviour, purchase decision-making criteria, decision-making processes, perceived barriers to adoption and other related variables.
  • Analyzed secondary and primary data and built a new product roadmap, target segments, positioning and messaging statements.
  • Created a 50+ slide PowerPoint deck and presented research results and strategy to client, including its CEO and other senior management personnel.

Results:

  • Final results were extremely well-received by the client and associated stakeholders; research and strategy recommendations were subsequently incorporated into the client’s overall strategic plan.