This Case is about COMPETITIVE STRATEGY, DECISION MAKING, LEADERSHIP, RISK MANAGEMENT
PUBLICATION DATE: June 16, 2015 PRODUCT #: ISB053-HCB-ENG
Discovery Communications Inc., an American international networks business, had entered the Indian television market in 1995 with its eponymous station offering that focused on nonfiction, infotainment programming. Almost two decades after, guided by senior management team that was sound, it created a powerful brand presence in India and had assembled a formidable operation with 11 stations crossing various genres. Although the firm was a leader in about all of the genres in which it operated, the Discovery team understood they could not afford to be complacent even for a day in the Indian television marketplace that was incredibly competitive. With around 800 stations fighting for viewership they needed to make rough and swift choices day in and day out. Looking back on a few of the strategic moves they had made in India and their journey, it was clear that they managed to pick up particular distinctive abilities along the way. Not only had they successfully “Indianized” a world-wide brand, they also beat some of the challenges inherent to the television sector in India. With their latest start, “Discovery Kids,” it appeared that they were once again going in the course of children’s edutainment. Could they implement what they learnt from the past to the future that is unknown? The case presents the difficult choices that Discovery wanted to make as the cable television marketplace changed and evolved through the years at several strategic junctures. It facilitates an in depth discussion on whether, and how, Discovery has developed the capability to make choices that are astute and obtained the necessary agility to react to the dynamic marketplace in India.