Business Combination Scavenger Hunt

GunsDrugsRich Makadok invites his students to send pictures of strange business combinations. The sequence of Delta Dental commercials offer humorous combinations of businesses that drive home the topic of corporate strategy. However, these pale when compared to many real world combinations. One of my favorites is when the CEO of Occidental Petroleum (Armand Hammer) purchased a significant interest in the company that makes Arm & Hammer Baking Soda because he liked the name. The scavenger hunt exercise involves asking students to search for real life examples of strange business combinations and bring pictures to class. Once you are looking for them, you realize the examples are everywhere. For example, Boeing plans to produce a new smartphone (really, not a joke). The restaurant above offers family planning advice and products. The exercise will help students realize how rare a sound corporate strategy really is. Click <Continue Reading> to see additional examples (in many cases, you can click the picture to go to the company’s web page):

Contributed by Rich Makadok










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8 thoughts on “Business Combination Scavenger Hunt

  1. Thanks for sharing! I just taught began the corporate strategy section of my course today with a focus on vertical integration. We talked about Chipotle’s recent decision to produce a comedy series.

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  3. Wow; what an eye opener about business un-relatedness. Not sure these illustrate “…how rare a sound corporate strategy really is” as the examples depict micro, even crude businesses. I should also mention that Armand Hammer run Occidental Petroleum from 1957 until his death in 1990, and I wasn’t able to find evidence that he wanted to buy Arm & Hammer for its name (or for any other reason). In the 1980s Arman Hammer owned a considerable amount of stock in Church and Dwight, the company that manufactures Arm & Hammer products. Another possible connection is a story is that Arman was named after the “arm & hammer” graphic symbol of the Socialist Labor Party of America (SLP), in which his father had a leadership role. Either way, thanks for sharing; I’ll use it for sure in my classes.

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