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ESMT Case Study

Andreas Keller in China

ESMT Case Study No. ESMT-318-0179-1
Johannes Habel, Zheng Han (2018)
Strategy and general management
General management, decision making, international business, international marketing, organizational behavior, business strategies, external environment analysis, sales
On the surface, this case study deals with a straightforward sales management issue: The protagonist, Andreas Keller, needs to increase the company’s revenue to get the Chinese business unit out of the red. However, as students dig deeper into the case study, they detect the following underlying, intriguing issues:
  • Setting priorities and making decisions in sales management, especially in times of distress.
  • Understanding intercultural and leadership challenges for a foreign “airborne manager” (空降) in a foreign subsidiary.
  • Comprehending the suitability of premium, service-based business models in China.
  • Understanding the limitations of applying business models from mature markets in Western countries to China.
  • Preparing for expatriate positions in China and elsewhere.
The case study can be taught in both executive education and degree courses. More specifically, the case study is ideally suited for international MBA students with some working experience and international career ambitions. It can be used in both the general management courses and specialized courses on sales, business development, or marketing.
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