International Business Strategy

International Business Strategy
International Business Strategy

Syllabus for MBA studies

  • Study module name: International Business Strategy
  • Lecturer: Prof. Guillaume Finck
  • Final check of studies: Written assignment

Aim of the MBA study module: The MBA course is designed to give students the necessary keys to master business strategy by developing their understanding of their economic environment and the fundamental principles of strategy and tactics. It will then concentrate on the overall principles of rupture strategies, by describing the processes that some businesses may use to open new strategic spaces.

Content of the MBA study module: 

  • Understanding of the challenges and methods necessary for an industry analysis.
  • Develop a concrete and operational understanding of strategic and tactical options.
  • Be able, once the rules are mastered, to break them when necessary.
  • One of the international market entry modes available for a company pursuing an international development strategy.
  • Assess a company’s export capabilities.
  • Build an export plan.
  • Research and select an international target market.
  • Understand the global influences in business such as currencies, oil, politics, etc.


  • Chapter 1: Business Intelligence as step 1 of business strategy 
    Through a study of the 100 years’ war between Coke and Pepsi, the ability to adapt a company to its environment in real time will be demonstrated. Products which are not necessary and not technically specific may become actual symbols if properly marketed, and vast political, economic and cultural empires built. Business intelligence as a preliminary tool will then be described. Methods and concepts will then be clarified. 
  • Chapter 2: Information is your most important weapon 
    How do we collect analyse and capitalize on information when business decisions are necessary? And more important, how do we chose the proper information we should use? This chapter will clarify the ways of eliminating improper data from our analysis process and resist manipulations.
  • Chapter 3: The rules : the art of war applied to business strategy 
    As a way to simplify complex strategic concepts, a study of warfare will be conducted. Once the teachings of Napoleon, Alexander, Attila, Cesar or Sun Tzu are understood, applying them to actual business decisions becomes self-evident. All major concepts of strategy are then clarified.
  • Chapter 4: Simple tools for complex problems 
    The understanding of the Diamond Analysis Process which separates the symptoms from the actual real issues we have to deal with is this chapter's first part. Part 2 demonstrates a second simple and efficient tool: the mapping process which enables us to produce a complex strategic development scenario. The example of Apple's currents strategic position will be used in this course.
  • Chapter 5: Know the rules
    A complete strategic analysis method in 13 points will be given to students. It may be used as a business guide for future managers. Internal and external analysis, Strategic Business Units, Key success factors, position matrix and scenario building will be clarified.
  • Chapter 6: Break the rules 
    In this chapter we learn how sometimes great results can be achieved using shortcuts and different thinking. Blue Ocean strategies, Soft strategies and the development of Freemium as an economic model will be studied. Surprising results will be demonstrated with minimum risk and investments, when proper ruptures are used.

Mandatory literature: Online study materials prepared by the lecturer.
Recommended literature and other sources:
all content on:
Porter, M. E. (1980). Competitive Strategy: Techniques for Analysing Industries and Competitors. New York: The Free Press.
Tzu, S. (2006). The Art of War. MN: Filiquarian Publishing.
Machiavelli, N. (2008). The Prince. New York: University Press.


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