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Module 5

Summative Assessment 5.3

100 marks

This assessment covers:

Unit 336699 – Demonstrate an understanding of the principles of marketing

Please read the following case study and answer the 4 questions that follow.

Speaking at an event in Johannesburg on Friday (25 January 2013), Dell Africa general manager, Stewart Van Graan, said that despite some challenges, there is ample opportunity for Dell to build a presence in the African market.

According to the GM, over the past few years, Dell has slowly been transforming itself from “that computer company”, to a company that engages its market in different ways, offering various products and services.

This transformation was driven by looking at buying patterns in the market – as well as through a number of global acquisitions.

“Our transformation is done,” van Graan said, echoing the statements made by Dell CEO, Michael Dell in 2012.

“This doesn’t mean we’re done buying and changing – it just means the core of the offerings are in place, and we can see the application in Africa,” Van Graan said.

Dell transformation was a push beyond simply computing, to being more of a services and solutions organization, dealing with enterprise, data centres, software and cloud services.

The shift has specifically drawn attention to the enterprise market, where 30% of the company’s revenue is currently held within the mid-market channel (companies with under 3000 employees), which houses 40% of the profitability, Van Graan said.

In the consumer game

While the company has diversified with a definite aim at enterprise and corporate business, Van Graan emphasised that Dell has not forgotten it’s roots.

“We’re still in the consumer game,” he said. “Retail is an important part of where we’re at.”

Van Graan said that, while the current trends point to end-user computing stepping back – ultrabooks and tablets will continue to grow, and mainframes and servers won’t be disappearing any time soon.

“We’ll participate where we see necessary [in end-user computing] – but we want to participate beyond that.”

Eyes on Africa

Dell currently operates in 27 countries across Africa, where Van Graan says the strategy for Dell is to find the balance between resource investment.

According to Van Graan, the company is positioning itself as a “flexible” platform for mid-market companies – in that it aims to sell products and services which can be adjusted and suited to meet a company’s needs.

“Our customers [in Africa] are telling us they have economic pressures…business is under pressure to deliver more.”

Dell employs around 400 people to handle sales and handle operations in Africa – 280 of which are in South Africa, Van Graan said.

Looking at East Africa, the GM conceded that due to economic and currency issues, “I think we’re under-invested there”.

However, he noted that there was still big opportunity – particularly in school and government projects – to build presence in both East and West Africa.

Looking at South Africa, the country is leading the foray into application redesign and using new platforms, access to data, and devices coming out, Van Graan said.

“Dell is intersecting into that.”

Please answer the following 4 questions:

1. How would you analyse and discuss the main principles of marketing with specific reference to the case study above? (20 marks)

2. Can you determine the relationship between the strategic analysis process and the development of a marketing strategy and plan with specific reference to the case study above? (30 marks)

3. How would you evaluate the various market strategies that must be developed in reaction to the dynamic environment in which the organisation operates with specific reference to the case study above? (30 marks)

4. How would you analyse a marketing plan with specific reference to the case study above? (20 marks)