Case Synopsis: This case describes a hypothetical situation faced by a fictitious international conglomerate, ICL, that intends to enter the retail grocery market in Hong Kong. The conglomerate’s interest in the Hong Kong supermarket industry was initially kindled by the plan of Hutchison Whampoa, Ltd. (HWL) to sell its leading supermarket chain PARKnSHOP in August 2013. However, in October 2013, HWL reversed course and decided not to sell PARKnSHOP, saying that the sale would not deliver maximum value to its shareholders. Before embarking into new territory, ICL wanted an in-depth understanding of the Hong Kong grocery market environment, competitors, and potential barriers to entry. The conglomerate was aware that the new Competition Law, which was expected to take effect in 2015, might have profound implications on the grocery market landscape in Hong Kong.Learning ObjectiveThis case provides students with an understanding of the competitive behavior of dominant players in an oligopolistic industry and the importance of competition laws to counteract certain anticompetitive conduct. Drawing on the experience of failed and successful entrants, students can explore various business strategies and formulate a strategy for a new supermarket entrant in Hong Kong to maximize its chances of success.
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