Ede & Ravenscroft Contemporary Business Issue: Globalization

www.ukessayslondon.com ede & RavenscroftEde & Ravenscroft Contemporary Business Issue: Globalization

 

Introduction

This paper is a report on Ede & Ravenscroft, a UK company based in London (Ede & Ravenscroft, 2018), and it is going to deal with the issue of globalization.

Ede & Ravenscroft Contemporary Business Issue: Globalization

Ede & Ravenscroft is perhaps “the oldest film of tailor in the world” (Ede & Ravenscroft, 2018), as it begins its activity in 1689 in London. The company was called Shudalls, at the time, and in a few years they began to supply not only the royal family, but also other institutions. The company acquired the name Ede & Ravenscroft in the 19th century, when Joseph Ede married Rosanna Ravenscroft. Through this marriage, the company entered the wig market. Today, the firm is continuing to providing services to the royals, businesses and academic institutions (Ede & Ravenscroft, 2018).

Ede & Ravenscroft Contemporary Business Issue: Globalization

The paper is going to follow a report-like structure, where in the first section I’m going to describe the issue of globalization and its impact on the business, followed by a section where the strategy of the firm is evaluated in relation to the issue. A third section provides some recommendations on how to deal with the business’ problem, where the last section constitutes an outline about how to apply the change, before heading to the conclusion.

Ede & Ravenscroft Contemporary Business Issue: Globalization

The thesis explored in the paper is that globalization will have an impact on the firm that could lead to some potential limit to the activity but, if well managed, globalization could also be an important opportunity for the company to expand.

Ede & Ravenscroft Contemporary Business Issue: Globalization

For this report I have used a qualitative methodology, using the company’s website as first source for the firm, while for the issue I have used books, articles and credible website as well.

Globalization’s impacts

The phenomenon called globalization could be quite difficult to explain: this is because it is an extremely complex issue with many variables related to the specific sector in which the issue is placed. In order to give a broad definition, it is possible to say that globalization is a process of interaction and combination that involves people, businesses and institutions all over the world. This process is driven by various factors such as the international trade, the Internet and the fast international mobility. The effects of this process are wide, as they are linked to virtually any aspect of the life of the global population and revolves around environment, society, and economy, just to name a few (Steger, 2017).

Ede & Ravenscroft Contemporary Business Issue: Globalization

Globalization has also some specific impacts on the textile industry, and while some of them are related to the general effects of this process, some others are specific to this sector. On a broadly scale, it is possible to say that the globalization makes available many alternatives on the market, with a competition that rises sensibly, as it is possible to import or export goods that have a general low cost, due either to the use of different materials or simply due to the minor cost of the work in other countries (Steger, 2017). This is true for virtually any market, but has some deep connection with the textile industry, since the phenomenon of fast fashion is profoundly linked to globalization (Barnes and Lea-Greenwood, 2006).

Ede & Ravenscroft Contemporary Business Issue: Globalization

Globalization has shown to have an impact on the market that should not be underestimated, but it is also a possibility, as it opens the market to opportunities never possible before, especially when the industry considered is specialized and diversified (Puig, Marques and Ghauri, 2009). In the United Kingdom industry, this is easily reachable with a product strategy that is based on a niche sector, where the profession and expertise of the workers, and the quality of the materials used is highly appreciated (Knight, 2000). The possibilities to sell goods all over the world easily, as well as the international relationship that is possible to create thanks to globalization could easily be taken as proof that this process has good and bad impacts, and that a firm that is capable of exploiting the good side of globalization, could easily reach a top position in its field (Steger, 2017).

Ede & Ravenscroft Contemporary Business Issue: Globalization

As it is possible to see, globalization has different ramifications that are tied to the specific strategy that a firm is going to use in order to incorporate this reality in its know-how. In itself, this process is neutral, not good nor bad, like many processes that involve society and economy. The difference between past processes and globalization is perhaps the scale and the velocity of the change, which makes this development very easily polarized and difficult to understand, especially to elder generations that are not born with a globalized mindset (Held and McGrew, 2013).

Ede & Ravenscroft Contemporary Business Issue: Globalization

The strategy of Ede & Ravenscroft

In this context the strategy adopted by Ede & Ravenscroft is hard to find in terms of what is available to the public. However, it is possible to deduce some elements looking at the company’s website and newspapers as well. The company has a website, however the social presence of the company is limited to the site only (Ede & Ravenscroft, 2018): it is possible to find the company on Facebook (Facebook.com, 2018), and Instagram, but the two social media are not linked to the site, and the last post on Instagram is dated 2016 (Instagram.com, 2018). From this, it is possible to deduce that the company has tried to maintain a web presence, but the effort was null, as it is not part of today’s strategy, at least to the date of this report.

Ede & Ravenscroft Contemporary Business Issue: Globalization

The history of the company is highly valuable and it is surely part of the strategy, as it is a guarantee of quality: the connection to the royal family, as well as to other important institutions has consolidated this characteristic of the firm, and has established the company as one of the best in the United Kingdom in the sector of ceremonial gown and wigs. Ede & Ravenscroft is now in its fourth century of activity, an element that has not to be underestimated. Moreover, the company has some links and connections to faculties and universities, which provides it with a constant stream of customers that surely helps the company in this particular fragment (Ede & Ravenscroft, 2018)..

Ede & Ravenscroft Contemporary Business Issue: Globalization

In the present, Ede & Ravenscroft appears to follow the same strategy that has proven successful in the past, with a very few adjustments. The online presence is low and inconstant. The company seems to have managed to acquire some important partnerships in order to guarantee to itself customers, but even this has proved to give some backlashes, as the legality of this partnership is put under scrutiny by the law (The Telegraph, 2017). The corporate social responsibility statement and the environmental policy are present on the website, however it is not possible to download a report or be able to understand in depth what are the actions that the company is taking (Ede & Ravenscroft, 2018).

Ede & Ravenscroft Contemporary Business Issue: Globalization

As for the future, there is very little information available, but there are currently no signs of the implementation of a different strategy for the company. This is not a solid proof that the future strategy of the firm is going to follow the one from the past, however with no information available it is possible to think that little to no modifications are going to be taken into consideration for the company, besides perhaps the one that will be necessary in order to comply with different legislations or fundamental steps that are essential to maintain a business.

Ede & Ravenscroft Contemporary Business Issue: Globalization

How to deal with globalization

As mentioned before, globalization could be a source of threats as well as opportunities therefore, in this report I focus on those opportunities and how it is possible to use them.

Ede & Ravenscroft Contemporary Business Issue: Globalization

First of all, it is indispensable to have a strong presence online. The reason behind this recommendation is that is not possible to exploit the opportunity that the globalization can give us, without: making other customers, outside your local market; and knowing what a firm is doing and how good the firm is in its activity. Having a strong online presence does not mean being on all social medias, constantly: what it means is to be aware of what social medias are, and how they are  for the firm’s best, in terms of correlation to the business’ niche (Weinberg and Pehlivan, 2011).

Ede & Ravenscroft Contemporary Business Issue: Globalization

A second recommendation that is possible to give is to diversify the market: in this specific case, the top customers for Ede & Ravenscroft are institutions and universities, and those must continue to have a top priority. There are other niches in which the services of a top firm, such as Ede & Ravenscroft, could be needed. The first example that is possible to make is the movie industry, as both UK and US television, but not only them, have always needed good tailors for costumes and scenes. Another example, maybe more closed to the United Kingdom’s traditions, is theatre.  In both cases the same expertise that has made Ede & Ravenscroft famous in their market, could easily make them famous in another niche as well (Bozarth, Blackhurst and Handfield, 2007).

Ede & Ravenscroft Contemporary Business Issue: Globalization

With the possible expansion of market that could come from a strong social media presence, it could be possible to explore the opportunities presented by new market outside the United Kingdom.
This is possible in two main ways: the first one is to enter the market for institutional gowns in the United States, where the tradition is similar to the one from the United Kingdom and there are minor changes to apply. The competition would be fierce, as it is possible to image, but the top quality of the firm should make this challenge in reach for Ede & Ravenscroft. This expansion would constitute phase number one of a much bigger plan to expand, and it could be considered as a first step towards the achievement of being known all across the globe (Singleton, 2016).

Ede & Ravenscroft Contemporary Business Issue: Globalization

The second step, which is more ambitious than the previous one, is to export the tradition of university’s ceremony in other West countries, where those types of ceremonies are less used, like in Italy or Norway, in order to expand the market even more (Singleton, 2016).

Ede & Ravenscroft Contemporary Business Issue: Globalization

Globalization should not be a burden over good quality firms, but the opposite (Steger, 2017). With a well planned strategy, I think there are no reasons why a brand like Ede & Ravenscroft could become a global firm, keeping its quality standard and its expertise all over the globe.

Ede & Ravenscroft Contemporary Business Issue: Globalization

Local presence, Global market.

The strategy to achieve such big objectives should have as a number one priority to ensure that the firm continues with its high standard products.

Ede & Ravenscroft Contemporary Business Issue: Globalization

This is fundamental in order to take the step forward.
The first thing to do in order to achieve a strong social media presence is to have a very good social media manager in the firm: while it is true that the products must be at the highest standard possible, the social media world is based on relationship, which is why a specific professionalism is so needed (Heller Baird and Parasnis, 2011). The strategy behind the social media presence should focus on expansion, as it represents the foundation of the marketing strategy that could bring Ede & Ravenscroft outside the United Kingdom’s borders.

Ede & Ravenscroft Contemporary Business Issue: Globalization

Then, in parallel with the new social media strategy, it is possible to start to expand inside the United Kingdom’s market, looking at the theatre and television industry. This should be an easy step to make, considering the connections, the importance of the brand, and its history on the United Kingdom’s territory. The social media strategy should follow this expansion, with an editorial plan that should include creations thought for cinema and theatre. The new relationships that are going to be built during this phase should constitute the basis for the next step, as Ede & Ravenscroft would begin to plan the expansion in the United States (Douglas and Craig, 1995)..

Ede & Ravenscroft Contemporary Business Issue: Globalization

The third phase of the strategy is based over the expansion in countries that have similar traditions in relation to the United Kingdom. The first possibility that the strategy has to explore is an expansion in the United States, as it is perhaps the country with more similarities to the United Kingdom. The first branch of market that could be exported is the university one, and then the others could follow as the first one would become more and more important. Here, and even before, it is possible that the firm would be tempted of expanding and making less quality products. That would be a mistake. In order to make this strategy successful, it is necessary that Ede & Ravenscroft maintains its quality, as it would be possible to reach fewer customers that are willing to pay more for the quality of the products (Parrish, Cassill and Oxenham, 2006)..

Ede & Ravenscroft Contemporary Business Issue: Globalization

This approach of niche marketing should be the one that used for the expansions of Ede & Ravenscroft outside the United Kingdom and United States. Adding to this method, it would be necessary to take a further step, as in other nations, the same tradition as in the UK and in the US are not present. This stage of the strategy should focus on a massive social media campaign; with perhaps the help of influencers and well know personalities, as they can help influence the new markets. Then, it is possible to apply the same strategy applied in the US, with the appropriate change needed in older to adjust to the national identity of the specific countries in which the firm is going to expand (Parrish, Cassill and Oxenham, 2006)..

Ede & Ravenscroft Contemporary Business Issue: Globalization

Conclusion

In this paper the Ede & Ravenscroft company is taken into exam, looking at how the company is dealing with the issue of globalization.
Globalization is a process that involves everyone, everywhere, and while it is true that it presents some challenges to firms all over the world, it is possible to turn those into opportunities for the company.
I have started my examination looking at the strategy of the firm in relation to this issue, and discovering that the company is not using the potentials offered by globalization, with a poor online presence and a market that seems limited to the UK.

My recommendations, as well as the outline presented in order to apply those recommendations were, in the first place, to build a strong online presence. This should open new possibilities, such as an internal expansion over other niche sectors, for example, the cinema and theater textile industry, as well as external expansions, firstly in the United Stated, and in other countries in a second phase.

The paper helps clarify that the process of globalization in itself is neither good or bad, and that it is possible even for a company born in 17th century to enter in a new world with infinite possibilities to offer.

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