corporate strategy vertical integration and diversification

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Please answer the following discussion questions:

Question 1 – Walmart

When Walmart decided to incorporate grocery stores into some locations and created “supercenters,” was this a business-level strategy of differentiation or a corporate strategy of diversification? Why? Explain your answer.

Question 2 – Starbucks

Franchising is widely used in the casual dining and fast-food industry, yet Starbucks is quite successful with a large number of company-owned stores. How do you explain this difference? Is Starbucks bucking the bandwagon effect, or is something else going on?

Please answer the following ethical/social issues question:

Question 3 – Nike

Nike is a large and successful firm in the design of athletic shoes. It could easily decide to forward-integrate to manufacture the shoes it designs. Therefore, the firm has a credible threat over its current manufacturers. If Nike has no intention of actually entering the manufacturing arena, is its supply chain management team being ethical with the current manufacturers if the team mentions this credible threat numerous times in annual pricing negotiations? Why or why not? What aspects of Nike’s agreement with its manufacturing partners do you believe they emphasize in negotiations?

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