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Case Title:

UK’s Manufacturing Competitiveness (C): Resurgence of Rolls-Royce?

Publication Year : 2009

Authors: Naga Sandhya, Ramadugu Girija P.

Industry: Manufacturing


Case Code: GBE0077

Teaching Note: Available

Structured Assignment: Available

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This case study, the third and the concluding of the three-part series, captures the performance of UK-based manufacturer, Rolls-Royce, in the context of current global economic recession and throws light on what leaves the company unshaken about its prospects, despite uncertainties. Rolls-Royce, credited as the symbol of modern British manufacturing, is one such company which transformed itself from the state of bankruptcy (although with government support) to the second-largest aircraft engine maker in the world. The company, formed in 1906, made a long journey by adapting itself to the changing political and economic factors and proved itself as the most successful manufacturer of UK. Although Rolls-Royce was not immune to several crises of the past, it exhibited high resilience, every time when exposed to crisis. Similarly, even in the current global economic crisis, the company is confident to weather the downturn. This case study explores various factors that are making the company confident to deal with challenges of crisis.

Pedagogical Objectives:

  • To have an overview of Rolls-Royce’s business operations since its inception
  • To understand the impact of privatisation and deregulation on Rolls-Royce and debate on whether the company benefited from the policy changes
  • To analyse the performance of Rolls-Royce in the light of recession and debate on the reasons that helped the company to weather the downturn.

Keywords : UK Manufacturing, Competitive advantage of Nations, David Ricardo’s Theory of Comparative cost advantage, textile Industry, Iron and steel industry, Napoleon Wars, Laissez-faire policy, Mercantilism, English East India company, Industrial Revolution

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