Business Report on Ethical and Strategic Sustainability in Global Strategic Practice

Ethical and Strategic Sustainability
Ethical and Strategic Sustainability

Business Report on Ethical and Strategic Sustainability in Global Strategic Practice


Analyze Ethical and Strategic Sustainability in Global Strategic Practice for the company (Sky green)

Assessment     Report-Business report

Topic   Business Report on Ethical and Strategic Sustainability in Global Strategic Practice

Company name           Sky Green

Length             2500 – 3000 words excluding tables, charts, graphs, references and appendices.

Marking Criteria         This assessment is expected to assess your ability on critical thinking, discipline knowledge, skills and application, ethical reasoning, problem-solving, reflection, research, and written communication on Ethical and Strategic Sustainability in Global Strategic Practice in a selected organisation.

• Evidence: sources of information, research, and analysis of company information

• Content, Analysis and Theory: application of relevant theories, concepts, models, and tools for decision effectiveness in strategy development and implementation

• Synthesis and Development of Argument: linking theory, concepts and practices critically in the discussion and justification

• Effective Written Communication

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Your report will be assessed for relevant research, analytical content and logical flow of your arguments (Please see making criteria)

You are expected to use quality research materials, literature/s (theoretical/conceptual), theory/ies, theoretical model/s, and/or conceptual framework/s from academic journals/textbooks to analyse/justify your analyses/arguments. Relevance is the key to using such references, not the number of references you present in your report.

All work must be original and must not have been submitted for any other subject or course here or elsewhere.

Style and Format        

• It is advised that the style is business report and the format for assignment 2 is to be 1.5 spaced with 2.54 cm margins and font size of 12 pt.

• Please show the word count, along with all other details on the cover sheet.

• Harvard references

Detailed Information

• Report against the Sustainable Development Goals in their UN Global Compact. The UN Global Reporting Initiative highlights the importance of Sustainability Reporting. Your report should focus on the extent of the sustainability practices/reporting in relation to their contribution to the UN SDGs.

• Assess the selected organization’s global strategic CSR and ethical approach and sustainability initiatives and practices by assessing their strategic resources and dynamic core capabilities in response or as a proactive organism in implementing the ethical and sustainable strategic approach in generating and sustaining superior value for its key stakeholders.  You will need to use frameworks and models, theories and concepts in your analysis and discussion of firm level analysis to explore distinct resources and capabilities of the company. You may employ relevant knowledge from other subjects that you have studied in the course to carry out a multiple analysis and theoretical interpretation.

• Identify key policies, systems and processes including operational, structuring, control, learning and knowledge management, and performance management related to the global strategic CSR and ethical approach of the company that aligns effective strategic planning and execution for sustainability. 

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• Examine and justify how the organization addresses and integrates global CSR, ethics and sustainability aspects in positioning (global business strategy) the organization as a proactive approach to CSR and sustainability meeting and/or exceeding industry and institutional CSR, ethical and sustainability requirements.

• Analyze industry to assess how the selected company positions itself in the industry against key players in the market to guide the organization to address current and future opportunities and challenges in terms of ecological, and social aspects of the changing environment.

• Develop a future global strategic and ethical road-map for the firm’s growth and development for the next 5 years including ethical and sustainable global strategic management of its value chain to differentiate the organization’s offerings for the market. You may use a diagram to illustrate your strategic road-map.

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 Your assignment should be presented as a business report and the format should be as follows

1. Cover Page

2. Executive Summary

3. Content Page

4. Introduction (Business problem, objective and scope of the report)

5. Methods you use to collect and analyse data and information

6. Titles and sub headings to cover the appropriate content described in the assessment

7. Conclusion and recommendations (conclusion and recommendations   should be drawn from analysis, discussion and argument in your report)

8. References

9. Appendixes

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Infinity Solar-Powered E-Bike Business Plan

Infinity Solar-Powered E-Bike
Infinity Solar-Powered E-Bike

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Infinity Solar-Powered E-Bike Business Plan


The Infinity Solar-powered E-Bike is an innovative bicycle technology that allows users to enjoy a manual ride and experience an electric bike at the same time. While there are many varieties of e-bikes in the market, the Infinity bike is an exceptional model in that it is not only solar powered but it also has an electronic motor control, such that the rider can switch between three modes of propulsion.

Besides this, the bike comes with a speedometer, which helps the rider determine the speed at which they are riding. The Infinity solar-powered e-bike is bound to attract major fandom based on its unique features which make it ideal for protecting riders from knee and back injuries.

The Infinity solar-powered bike targets three customer segments: adventure riders, people seeking cheaper transport alternatives, and employees and students who commute regularly. To reach the customers, the company will utilize digital media and social media marketing. These methods are capable of effectively promoting the bike to the selected group.

To successfully implement this lucrative idea, a considerable amount of resources is required, including set up expenses, equipment and material, staff and marketing. The amount available to the owner is however limited, hence the need to seek funding. This business plan details information that may be necessary in informing the bank’s decision to fund the business. If successful, this will be the beginning of a highly rewarding business venture.


As the world increasingly embraces ‘green energy’ to reduce the impact of global warming and natural resource depletion, valuable innovations have emerged in the market, with solar energy being described as one of the most sustainable sources of energy. Solar energy has been successfully used in lighting houses, water heating running machines and equipment and most recently for the solar-powered cars. In the same bearing, the motivation to build a solar E-Bike resulted from observing the endless possibilities that can be achieved using solar energy.

This is a form of energy that is not only freely available but cannot be depleted like other natural resources. This means that it will offer continuity while providing cheap energy to power the E-Bike. While the idea of the solar E-Bike is highly feasible based on research and projected benefit to individuals and the environment, the execution remains an enigma, partly due to the need for financial resources necessary to begin production.

This business plan details the major concepts behind the solar-powered E-Bike and the commercial viability of the venture. Through this business plan, it will be possible for the bank to understand the motivation behind this business venture and how the finances obtained will be used in setting up an exceptional idea that will influence future generations.

Business Plan

Business Name and Address

Name: Infinity Solar-Powered E-Bikes

Address: .,,.,,.,.,.,..,.

Proprietor’s Name and Address

Name: Jiachen Bonnie ZHANG

Address: ………………………

Business Form

This business is a sole proprietorship run and managed by the business owner.

Business Activity

            Infinity Solar E-Bike is the newest innovation in the market, featuring a bicycle that has an integrated electric motor and a solar panel which can be used for propulsion. The unique bike comes with a direct charging system that allows the user to charge the bike from a power socket and a solar panel that feeds solar energy into a battery. This power bike allow the user to not only take a manual ride but also use the electric motor control and solar motor control to propel the bike, thus increasing comfort and offering flexibility. The bicycle has an electronic display on the handlebar that shows the speed and battery level at any time.

An additional feature that makes the Infinity E-Bike attractive is the fact that it is a portable and foldable bike. This makes it suitable for expeditions and long-distance adventures since they can be easily transported in a motor vehicle and retrieved when needed. The flexibility of the bike also allows users to carry it around when taking public transport and then unfolding it for use in navigating areas that are not covered by public transport. It is therefore very versatile and convenient.

Aims of the business

            The solar E-bike was developed with the aim of providing users with a superior experience from ordinary bikes. The solar bike provides a cheaper option than driving a car, given that it can effectively run on solar power, requires to gas or insurance. The E-bike targets people who are working and constantly endure long hours of traffic during rush hour. With this bike, users can make it to work in good time.

            The bike is designed to increase user comfort. Compared to the traditional bicycle, the Infinity E-Bike is friendlier to knees and joints, thus minimizing discomfort and chances of injury. The Infinity solar-powered e-bike provides a more upright seating position and this plays an imperative role in reducing back and neck pain. The ride is also in a position to watch for obstacles and cars more easily, thus reducing risk of accident. The e-bike does not get hot when riding uphill and riding in the wind is no longer a challenge.  

The e-bike also comes with a security feature aimed at protecting the bike from theft. The e-bike requires a key to operate is heavier to move, hence making it harder to move than traditional bikes.


  1. To reach 5000 customers within the first three months of operation
  2. To achieve $2,640,000 in sales in the first year of operation

Market size and growth

            The idea of a solar-powered bicycle is relatively new and has not been optimally explored. However, as solar panels become increasingly portable and affordable, competition is expected to rise significantly, thus saturating the market. Solar bikes first came into existence in the 1980s but their bulky nature which consisted of a trailer to carry the solar panels negatively affected their popularity. Currently, solar powered bikes are sleeker and less bulky.

The manufacture of solar powered e-bikes is still on small scale and not commercially exploited, with innovations mostly consisting of individual creations and custom-made orders. This is associated with high manufacturing costs and low adoption by potential users. The same applies for electric-powered bikes, which have continued to gain in recent years.

Competition analysis


eZee bike – Popular brand -Folding varieties -In the process of developing solar-powered bikes -Financial strength-Superior power in all terrains– Expensive to use -Better variety emerging in the market – Bulky
ELF Transit-Bicycle-car hybrid -Roofed -Stable and can be used by non-riders (Has 3 wheels) -No gas required, runs on solar energy– Lacks flexibility for use as a bike due to its size -Designed for smooth roads -Cannot navigate small spaces like a normal bike
Solarbike Frausig, Germany-Sleek design -Solar panels on wheels saves on space Both manual and electric -Light and portable – full battery could propel the user for over 40 miles and go up to a speed of 30mph.– Still in product development stage -No backup source of energy, only solar

Infinity solar-powered E-Bike

-Sleek design -Foldable -Speed reader -Solar and electric power -three riding modes -Cheap -No need for gar/insurance -High chair for easy survey of surroundings and traffic -Does not heat up when going uphill-Heavy -New in the market hence no customer base -Not yet tested by customers on the ground -Lacks funding for development

Competitive Advantages

            The Infinity Solar-Powered E-bike is designed in such a way that it seeks to provide great value for cyclists, by offering them three power modes. The user can choose to either ride manually or switch between solar and electric modes. This provides backup power and the rider is not likely to get stranded, such as when there is no sunlight. The bike provides a solution for people who want to enjoy a bicycle ride but may not desire the physical intensity involved in manual riding. Furthermore, the bicycle offers a cheap alternative to vehicle transport since it does not require the use of gas. The e-bike is of high quality and is expected to serve users in an effective manner while providing value for money.

Proposed Customers

Selecting a target market ensures that the company can design products that are tailored towards satisfying their customers (Chuwiruch, N, Jhundra-Indra and Boonlua, 2015). Proposed customer identification also ensures targeted marketing, thus enhancing efficiency (Johnson et al, 2014). The Infinity solar e-bike will target three types of customers:

  1. Adventure riders: The e-bike is designed in such a way that it can overcome tough terrains and uphill riding. It is therefore perfect for people who ride for fun or adventure.
  2. Individuals seeking cheap transport alternatives: The price of gas is highly volatile and maintenance of cars can be quite expensive. Public transport also has its limitations in terms of costs and convenience. The solar e-bike takes care of this by providing a cheap alternative that is also convenient.
  3. Employees and students: This group of customers consists of individuals who must either go to school or to work every day; often spending significant amount of time in traffic. The e-bike promises to reduce the time taken to get to work by a great percentage, thus enhancing convenience. Furthermore, the e-bike is useful for traversing areas where public transport is unavailable instead of walking. 

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Marketing Strategy

            Marketing strategy denotes the approaches taken in ensuring that the company’s products attract demand and that they can effectively compete with others in the market (Chuwiruch, Jhundra-Indra and Boonlua, 2015). A well-structured marketing strategy will assure high sales and profitability for the company. In reference to the marketing mix, the Infinity Solar-powered E-Bike will design its marketing strategy based on the following aspects.


            The Infinity solar e-bike aims at providing the highest level of customer satisfaction. This will be attained through producing quality products that are long-lasting, made possible through investing in high technology machines and quality input materials (Najmaei, 2014). To ensure maximum customer satisfaction, the e-bike will be made to accomplish all the positive features described. A return policy will be put in place, such that customers can return any faulty bike.


            At infinity, the guiding principle will be to provide customers with the best quality e-bike and the best customer service possible, with the objective of turning them into loyal customers. Customer needs will be given first priority and every employee will be required to possess customer care skills and product knowledge necessary to provide effective feedback to customers. As noted by Valick, A. & Benavides (2011), responding to customer queries is not only a responsibility of customer care representatives and marketers but a common duty for all company staff; hence the need to familiarize with all product aspects.


            Price is a direct determinant of demand and the company must therefore set a price that is attractive for the customer while allowing a reasonable profit margin (Davari and Strutton, 2014). The pricing policy at Infinity will be to provide e-bikes at a reasonably low price. Due to the uniqueness of the brand, the bike will not be the lowest priced but it will be lowly priced for a product of its caliber. All e-bikes will be sold at the same price even where distributors and re-sellers are involved. This will enhance uniformity in price and hence create consistency. The cost for one solar-powered e-bike will be set at $1,100 per piece.


            This refers to the method of communication to targeted customers. This must be designed to appeal to the target market so that it can be effective in attracting customers (Davari and Strutton, 2014). Infinity solar-powered e-bikes will be advertised through digital media such as television and social media. Digital media is preferred due to its ability to show motion and hence give customers an idea of how the bike works instead of placing a still picture advertisement on print media (Kotler and Armstrong, 2015).

Social media is bound to be effective because the targeted market spends a significant proportion of their time on social media (Kumar, et al, 2016). Through videos and post shares, the company will ensure that the e-bike is advertised to target customers.


The need to ensure that the customers can access the product easily calls for the creation of an effective supply chain (Kirovska, Josifovska and Kiselicki, 2016; Ashby, Leat and Hudson-Smith, 2012). In essence the company must ensure that the e-bike is accessible for potential customers through considering various channels of distribution including direct sales, franchising, wholesalers and retailers (Chelliah, et al, 2013). To begin with, the Infinity solar e-bike will be available in the United Kingdombefore expanding the company’s presence in other regions. The bike will be available in leading sports stores, supermarkets and individual retail stores besides direct sales from the factory.


Effective production of solar-powered e-bikes will require the following equipment:

Fork fixture$1,675
Frame building tool$4,100
Vacuum cleaners$350
Bicycle assembly machine$4500
Rim making machine$7,000
Tube benders$3000
Handlebar machines$10,000
Grinding and polishing machines$13,000
End-forming machines$9,500

The number of equipment and costs involved may initially be too high for the start-up company to afford. Accordingly, some of the equipment required will be leased for the first one year.

Key people and job functions

Financial Highlights

Forecast Profit and Loss Account

Infinity Solar-Powered E-Bike

Profit and Loss Account

For Period between August 2016 to July 2017

Sales$2,640,000     (A)
Less variable costs
          Direct wages$40,000
         Total variable costs$980,000
Gross profit$1,660,000       (B)
Less Fixed costs
          Salaries and        wages$150,000
          Equipment lease$300,000
          Telephone costs$170,000
          License renewal$2,000
         Other costs$3,000
         Total fixed costs$1,164,000         (C)
Net profit$496,000

Break-even point

 (A) x (C)


= 1,851180 units

Cash flow Forecast

Sales – Cash33,00055,00055,000110,000165,000220,000275,000297,000330,000352,000363,000385,000
Sales – Debtors000000000000
Capital Introduced100,000140,000   250,000      
Grants, loans250,000           
Total (A)383,000195,00055,000110,000165,000470,000275,000297,000330,000352,000363,000385,000
Equipment lease25,00025,00025,00025,00025,00025,00025,00025,00025,00025,00025,00025,000
Telephone costs25,00022,00019,00014,00013,00011,00011,00011,00011,00011,00011,00011,000
License renewal2,00000000000000
Other costs250250250250250250250250250250250250
Capital Purchases200,00000000150,00000000
Loan repayments10,00010,00010,00010,00010,00010,00010,00010,00010,00010,00010,00010,000
Total (B)424,250155,750139,750130,250129,250127,250277,250127,250127,250125,250125,250360,250
Cash flow (A) – (B)-41,25039,250-84,750-20,25035,750342,750-2,250169,750202,750226,750237,75024,750
Opening balance350,000-41,250-2,000-86,750-107,000-71,250271,500269,250439,000641,750868,5001,106,250
Closing balance-41,250-2,000-86,750-107,000-71,250271,500269,250439,000641,750868,5001,106,2501,131,000

Approach to value creation

The process of value creation for the solar-powered bike business entails a five step process from when the product is developed, to when it achieves value creation.

The first step has mostly been accomplished, having developed the concept of the E-Bike and how it will operate. Gallego, Rubalcaba and Hipp (2013) present the case for innovation, stating that creating value is about presenting innovative products and services. The E-Bike presents a unique innovation which will allow users to use a E-Bike with three functions namely; manual ride, electric motor control and solar power motor control. Electronic display on the E-Bike allows the user to read speed and battery level; further demonstrating the level of innovation. The E-Bike, which is also foldable provides exceptional convenience.

The second step is demand creation, which basically includes marketing the E-bike to potential customers and convincing them to buy it. This will involve showing the value of the innovation and how it will impact their lives, affordability and durability of the E-bike (Lynch, 2012).

Once demand has been created and sales made, the next step is to convert buyers into loyal customers. This will be achieved through ensuring that the E-Bike meets their needs as expected during the marketing stage (Rath and Mousumi Singha, 2013).

Next is to enhance customer satisfaction through meeting their needs and addressing any concerns they may have regarding the E-Bike. At this level, the customers are likely to refer potential clients based on their level of satisfaction (Johnson et al, 2014). 

The final step to value creation is to make customers part of the organization. By working with customers as partners, the company can seek ways to further improve the E-Bike’s performance and probably develop a new product that is more innovative (Grant, 2016). This step sets pace for the next value creation process.

Factors encouraging entrepreneurship

In life, every day is a learning process and a chance to become a better person. When I initially lost my job as a Digital Social Media company manager where I worked for six years, the next best thing would have been to seek employment elsewhere. However, I was inspired by a drive for independence and an opportunity to make a difference in the society, hence my decision to venture into business.

Moving to entrepreneurship depends on the kind of product one is dealing with and whether customers might be interested. Having observed that bicycles are widely used as a means of transport and recreation, I thought that users might be interested in a bike that offered them greater capabilities than just the manual ride. Internet searches revealed that solar power is the next energy frontier and the idea of an E-Bike appeared best suited to help me achieve my objective.

It is notable that the high level of instability in the country has impacted employment significantly. Job security is no longer assured and even where available, the level of remuneration is barely enough to sustain a favorable purchasing power. Entrepreneurship however opens endless possibilities, particularly when the product is innovative and appealing to customers. I therefore found it reasonable to increase my earning capacity through entrepreneurship, not only to improve my life but also contribute to national building through creating employment opportunities for others.

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Developing and appraising personal potential as an entrepreneur

            As an entrepreneur, it is important to understand my competence and potential. In this regard, I will apply various techniques in developing and appraising personal potential as an entrepreneur. This will mostly include taking professional tests and self-assessments available online such as BDC Entrepreneurs First. The site provides a list of 50 questions on entrepreneurial attributes, motivation, attitudes and aptitudes which the user is expected to fill in.

Once completed, the site makes an analysis of the responses, which will then be used in determining entrepreneurial potential (BDC, 2016). Common professional assessment tools include Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, The Entrepreneur Equation, the StrengthsFinder, Teamability and FourSight Thinking Profile.

Functional skills appropriate to the management of SME

            In the management of SMEs, certain functional skills are necessary to enhance performance and resilience in a competitive environment (Botha, Vuuren and Kunene, 2015). These skills include:

Finance management: SMEs must be in a position to manage their finances in order to stay afloat. The management must therefore be capable of managing cash flow, credit and have knowledge on financial reporting (Ayub, 2014).

Marketing: Being a small business, there is need for high level marketing to promote growth. Every contact with customers should be a chance to market the company (Goodman and Dingli, 2013). Functional skills also necessary include advertising and public relations.

Personal business skills: These include oral and written communication, computer skills, negotiation skills and organizational skills among others (Botha, Vuuren and Kunene, 2015).

Problem solving: The management of an SME should be capable of dealing with challenges and problems whenever they occur (Goodman and Dingli, 2013).  

Dispute resolution: When working with a team, disputes and conflicts are also likely to emerge. The management should be in a position to resolve disputes amicably to enhance collaboration.


Infinity Solar-Power E-Bike presents an innovative product that is bound to change the face of solar e-bikes. The e-bike provides customers with a unique brand with flexible capabilities, demonstrated by its three function modes. This sets the bar higher because the rider can either use the manual, the electric motor control or the solar power motor control. The target customer group is expected to find the bike useful, both for navigation and fun expeditions.

As a cheap alternative to cars, the bike’s demand is expected to increase tremendously following its introduction. To enhance successful launch and sale of the product, various factors in the marketing mix are put into consideration to ensure that the product appeals to customers. The price of $1,100 is relatively cheap and the quality is excellent.

These characteristics coupled with effective promotional strategies, customer service and convenient access to the e-bikes will ensure that the company realizes adequate profits to make the business successful. The Solar E-Bike has great potential and at this juncture, the idea’s execution is only limited by unavailability of funds, hence the need to seek funding in the form of a business loan.

Reference List

Ame, AM 2013, “Factors influencing customers’ evaluation of service quality and customer satisfaction – findings from Tanzania”, International Journal of Marketing and Technology, vol. 3, no. 5, pp. 87-112. Retrieved from

Ashby, A., Leat, M., & Hudson-Smith, M 2012, “Making connections: A review of supply chain management and sustainability literature.” Supply Chain Management, 17(5), 497-516. doi:

Ayub, KM 2014, Diverse Contemporary Issues Facing Business Management Education, Herhey, PA, IGI Global.

BCD 2016, Entrepreneurial potential self-assessment, Available at

Botha, M, van Vuuren, J, & Kunene, T 2015, ‘An integrated entrepreneurial performance model focusing on the importance and proficiency of competencies for start-up and established SMEs’, South African Journal Of Business Management, 46, 3, pp. 55-65, Business Source Complete, EBSCOhost, viewed 31 May 2016. Retrieved from

Chelliah, S, Chin Kok, K, Annamalah, S, & Munusamy, J 2013, ‘Does Marketing Mix Still Relevant? A Study on Herbal Coffee in Malaysia’, International Journal Of Management & Innovation, 5, 1, pp. 31-45, Business Source Complete, EBSCOhost, viewed 31 May 2016. Retrieved from

Chuwiruch, N, Jhundra-Indra, P, & Boonlua, S 2015, ‘Marketing Innovation Strategy And Marketing Performance: A Conceptual Framework’, Allied Academies International Conference: Proceedings Of The Academy Of Marketing Studies (AMS), 20, 2, pp. 82-93, Business Source Complete, EBSCOhost, viewed 31 May 2016. Retrieved from

Davari, A, & Strutton, D 2014, ‘Marketing mix strategies for closing the gap between green consumers’ pro-environmental beliefs and behaviors’, Journal Of Strategic Marketing, 22, 7, pp. 563-586, Business Source Complete, EBSCOhost, viewed 31 May 2016. Retrieved from

Gallego, J., Rubalcaba, L. & Hipp, C. 2013, “Services and organisational innovation: the right mix for value creation”,Management Decision, vol. 51, no. 6, pp. 1117-1134. Retrieved from

Goodman, M., & Dingli, SM 2013, Creativity and Strategic Innovation Management, New York, Routledge.

Grant R 2012, Contemporary Strategy Analysis: Concepts, techniques, applications, 8th Ed, London, Blackwell.

Grant, R. M 2016, Contemporary Strategy Analysis: text and cases, 9th edn. Chichester, Wiley & Sons.

Johnson et al 2014, Exploring Strategy: text and cases, 10th edn, London, Pearson.

Kirovska, Z, Josifovska, A, & Kiselicki, M 2016, ‘Efficient Management Of Supply Chain In Achieving A Significant Competitive Advantage In The Market’, Journal Of Sustainable Development (1857-8519), 5, 14, pp. 5-22, Business Source Complete, EBSCOhost, viewed 19 April 2016. Retrieved from

Kotler, P., & Armstrong, G 2015, Principles of Marketing. Harlow, UK: Pearson Education.

Kumar, A., Bezawada, R., Rishika, R., Janakiraman, R., & Kannan, P. K. (2016). From Social to

Sale: The Effects of Firm-Generated Content in Social Media on Customer Behavior. Journal of Marketing, 80(1), 7-25. doi:10.1509/jm.14.0249. Retrieved from

Lynch, R 2012, Strategic Management, 6th Ed, London, Prentice Hall 

Najmaei, A 2014, ‘Towards an Integrative Model for Management of Organization’s Total Innovation: Insights from the Strategic-Process View’, IUP Journal Of Knowledge Management, 12, 3, pp. 61-73, Business Source Complete, EBSCOhost, viewed 25 March 2016. Retrieved from

Rath, S, & Mousumi Singha, M 2013, ‘Brand Recognition and Advertising Effectiveness: Study of Youth Responses for Select Print Advertisements’, Journal Of Contemporary Management Research, 8, 2, pp. 82-88, Business Source Complete, EBSCOhost, viewed 27 March 2016. Retrieved from

Valick, A. & Benavides, TJ 2011, Practical Human Resources for Public Managers: A Case Study Approach. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press.

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Financial Statement Analysis: Business Analysis Report

Financial Statement Analysis
Financial Statement Analysis

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Financial Statement Analysis

Business Analysis Report:


This report provides an exhaustive comparative appraisal of the fiscal position, cash flows, performance, and evaluation of Bellway PLC and Redrow PLC. These are two companies that both operate in United Kingdom’s real estate industry. The report sought to answer the following questions: Is Bellway in a better financial position than Redrow? Which company is more profitable for investors between Bellway and Redrow? Which of these two companies is better positioned to exploit the opportunities in its environment? The results indicate that Bellway is better positioned fiscally than Redrow in case an emergency situation comes up. All the same, Redrow is better positioned to exploit the opportunities in its environment than Bellway.

Business analysis report


This report provides an in-depth comparative appraisal of the fiscal position, cash flows, performance, and evaluation of two companies that operate within the same industry. In analyzing the main financial statement of the two companies, the researcher uses ratio analysis, vertical analysis, and horizontal/trend analysis. The selected firms are Bellway PLC and Redrow PLC. Both of these companies operate in the United Kingdom’s home construction industry. This appraisal comprises SWOT analysis for both Bellway and Redrow.

The two selected companies are described briefly in the introduction section and a fuller description is found at the Study section. Redrow PLC is an organization that is based in Britain and is involved in residential development. Redrow PLC own’s Harrow Estates, which is focused on property and land solutions (Redrow 2016; Cahill 2012). Bellway PLC is a holding company also based in Britain. It owns subsidiary undertakings and it mainly engages in building houses in Britain (Bellway 2016).

Research questions

  • Is Bellway in a better financial position than Redrow?
  • Which company is more profitable for investors between Bellway and Redrow?
  • Which of these two companies is better positioned to exploit the opportunities in its environment? 

Literature Review

The selected companies: Redrow PLC and Bellway PLC

Redrow PLC is a firm that is based in the United Kingdom. It is engaged in residential development. Redrow PLC own’s Harrow Estates, which is focused on property and land solutions (Redrow 2016). Redrow PLC is involved primarily in construction and building of residential properties. It provides its services only within the United Kingdom. Redrow PLC has a land bank of over 12,000 development lots giving the firm about 4-year supply of buildable land, which provides a buffer against abrupt increases in land prices (Redrow 2016).

Bellway PLC is a holding company that is based in the United Kingdom. It owns subsidiary undertakings and it largely engages in contructing houses in the United Kingdom (Bellway 2016). Bellway PLC has quite a few subsidiaries the main one being Bellway Properties Limited. Bellway PLC operates in England, Scotland and Wales only. It does not have operations in Northern Ireland. The land bank owned and controlled by Bellway PLC is roughly 34,070 plots (Bellway 2016).

In the 2015 financial year, Bellway sold in excess of 7,760 houses at an average price of roughly £224,000; about eighty percent of which were sold privately and the remainder being sold as social housing. Bellway PLC gives emphasis to sales volume growth and it frequently buys land particularly at low-cost at locations where it can develop (Bloomberg 2016).

Industry: Home Construction / Real Estate

Bellway PLC and Redrow PLC both operate in the United Kingdom’s home construction industry. This is because both companies are engaged in the construction of buildings: that is, they build and develop houses and homes. They construct and develop houses and homes of different types and sizes for diverse markets (Cave 2015; Lai 2013). The housing market in the United Kingdom has been growing steadily (Willer 2016). This steady growth is largely attributed to the aging UK population which increases demand for property overall (Everett & Duval 2010; Stewart 2013).

The long-term trend for house prices in Britain is upwards, although changes in the prices of houses are very cyclical (Cave 2015; Brennan 2013). In the housing market of the United Kingdom, about 250,000 new homes are needed to be built annually in order to stay abreast of the demand (Bourke 2012; Elliot 2013). Even though the construction sector in general in Britain has slowed down, the homebuilding sub-sector has seen a rise in the construction of new homes (Canocchi 2016; Cunningham 2012; Roxburgh 2011).

SWOT analysis

SWOT – strength, weakness, opportunity and threat – analysis is utilized in evaluating a company’s position and guide strategy going forward. Strengths – these are the qualities which determine a company’s success. Strengths allow an organization to attain its mission. Strengths could be intangible or tangible and include qualities and traits that staff members have as well as their flair which offers the company consistency (Everett 2014). Examples of strengths include no debt, workers who are committed, and huge monetary resources.

Weaknesses – these refer to the qualities which impede the productivity of a company preventing the company from attaining its mission and achieving its full potential. Even so, weaknesses can be controlled and the impact and magnitude of the damage could be decreased. SWOT analysis helps not just to identify the weaknesses of a company, but also provides a chance of reversing those weaknesses (Everett 2014). 

Opportunities – there are an extensive range of opportunities present in the environment where the company operates. An organization could always benefit from such opportunities, which could arise out of the market, technology or competition. It is notable that existing opportunities could be the utilization of novel technology, exploiting the company’s untapped resources, and failure of a competitor (Fine 2011).

Threats – these are the elements of vulnerability which could jeopardize the organization’s profitability and reliability. They are unavoidable and cannot be controlled. They have to be addressed so as to find a practicable solution (Pickton & Wright 2014).

Fine (2011) noted that a SWOT analysis is a vital part of the strategic planning process of an organization as offers a good all-round perspective of the forward-looking and current situation of the business. The Weaknesses and Strengths sections provide a look at the current position of the company whereas the Threats and Opportunities sections help in projecting challenges as well as possibilities going forward (Bensoussan 2013). SWOT analysis is a suitable tool for strategic planning.

As a result of the analysis, the business owner would be able to set organizational goals and objectives and obtain a clearer picture for basing his decisions on (Lu 2010). In addition, SWOT analysis helps the business owner to utilize a strategy to match the company’s opportunities and threats, and utilize those strategies to convert the threats and weaknesses of the company into its opportunities and threats (Bensoussan 2013). Although a SWOT analysis allows a business owner to identify and understand important issues that affect the company, SWOT analysis does not essentially provide solutions (Fine 2011).

Ratio Analysis Theory

This theory is relevant to the present research paper. Analysis of fiscal reports necessitates skill of statistical tools, accountancy, and mathematics. There are several fundamental ratios that could help anyone in analyzing an organization’s Profit & Loss Account and Balance Sheet for instance current ratio, provisioning coverage ratio, credit deposits ratio, debtors turnover ratio among others. A wide range of fiscal data could be obtained from Annual Reports, Profit and Loss Account, Audit Report, Balance Sheet, Bank Loan Statement, Bank Account Statement, and Income Tax Return.

Financial Statements

Common fiscal statements include cash flow statement, balance sheet, and income statement, and they are all interconnected. The cash flow statement explains cash outflows as well as cash inflows, and it reveals the amount of money which the business has available on hand, which is reported in the balance sheet also. The income statement is used in describing the way liabilities and assets were utilized in the stated accounting period (Routh 2014).

Every financial statement by themselves only offer a portion of the story of the fiscal condition of the business. When taken together however, the fiscal statements offer a more comprehensive picture (Putra 2015). Potential creditors and stockholders usually analyze the fiscal statements of a business organization and compute several fiscal ratios with the data they contain with the aim of identifying the fiscal weaknesses and strengths of the company and establish whether or not the firm is actually a good investment/credit risk (Kumara 2012). In addition, the fiscal statements of a company are usually utilized by the managers as it aids them in making decisions (Routh 2014).

One particular significant way in which the three fiscal statements are utilized together is in calculating free cash flow (FCF). Investors who are smart prefer business organizations which generate lots of FCFs. This is primarily because it signals the ability of the firm to pay off its debt as well as dividends, facilitate the company’s growth, and buy back stock – all vital undertakings from the perspective of an investor (Routh 2014). Even so, whilst free cash flow is an essential gauge of the health of the business, it actually has its limits; as Lan (2014) pointed out, free cash flow is really not immune to accounting trickery.   

Financial Statement Analysis

Financial analysis or financial statement analysis is the process in which the fiscal statements of a company are reviewed in order to make better financial decisions. Financial analysis focuses on analyzing a company’s income statement and balance sheet to interpret the business as well as the company’s fiscal ratios for fiscal forecasting, business evaluation, and even fiscal representations (Grimm & Blazovich 2016).

The main fiscal statements include Statement of Cash Flows, Balance Sheet, and Income Statement (Routh 2014). Financial analysis is a process or technique that involves certain methods for assessing fiscal health, performance, risks, as well as the company’s future prospects.

Financial statement analysis is utilized by many stakeholders including equity and credit investors, decision-makers with the company, the public, and even the government. These different stakeholders have various interests and they apply dissimilar techniques in meeting their needs (Lan 2014). Creditors, for example, want to ensure the principal and interest is paid on the debt securities of the organization whenever due. Equity investors are interested in the organization’s long-term earnings power and the growth and sustainability of dividend payments. Some of the common financial analysis methods include DuPont analysis, fundamental analysis, vertical and horizontal analysis, as well as the use of financial ratios. To project performance of the future, historical information combined with several adjustments and suppositions to the fiscal information might be utilized.

Methods of financial analysis

Ratio analysis

Financial ratios are essential tools for performing analysis of financial statements quickly. There are 4 different classifications of financial ratios: leverage, activity, profitability, and liquidity ratios. These financial ratios are usually analyzed across competitors within the industry and over time (Routh 2014). In analyzing the financial statement of a company using the ratio analysis method, various types of ratios are used.   

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Liquidity Ratios: these are utilized in determining how fast an organization is able to turn its assets into cash in the event that the business faces insolvency or fiscal challenges. In essence, liquidity ratios are a measure of the capacity of an organization to remain in business (Routh 2014). Some of the liquidity ratios include the liquidity index and the current ratio.    

Current ratio is used to measure the current assets of an organization against the organization’s current liabilities (Altman 2012). The current ratio is used in measuring the amount of liquidity that is available to pay for liabilities (Lan 2014). It is notable that the current ratio indicates whether or not the corporation is capable of paying off its short-term liabilities during a situation of emergency through liquidating its current assets (Lan 2014).

A low current ratio means that the company might find it difficult to pay its current liabilities within the short run hence it should be investigated more. If the current ratio is less than one for example, it indicates that even when the firm liquidates its entire current assets, it will still not be able to pay off its current liabilities (Routh 2014).

Quick ratio helps to compare the accounts receivable, short-term marketable securities, and the cash to the company’s current liabilities. If quick ratio is 0.55 for example, it means that the firm is only able to cover 55 percent of current liabilities by monetizing accounts receivable, liquidating short-term marketable securities, and utilizing all cash-on-hand (Lan 2014).

Cash ratio is computed as cash and short-term marketable securities divided by organization’s current liabilities. It is worth mentioning that a cash ratio of 0.31 will mean that the firm could only pay off 31 percent of its current liabilities with the use of its short-term marketable securities as well as cash.

Liquidity index is also one of the liquidity ratios although is not very popular. It is used to measure the period of time that is needed for converting assets into cash (Batta, Ganguly & Rosett 2014).

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Activity Ratios: these ratios essentially demonstrate how well the company’s top executives are managing the resources of the organization. Accounts receivable turnover and accounts payable turnover are some of the common activity ratios. They show the period it takes for an organization to get payments and how long it takes for an organization to pay off its accounts payable (Routh 2014). Other activity ratios include sales to working capital ratio, fixed asset turnover ratio, working capital turnover ratio, and inventory turnover ratio.

Profitability Ratios: these are ratios which show how profitable an organization is. The gross profit ratio and the breakeven point are some of the common profitability ratios. The breakeven point is used in computing the amount of money which the organization has to generate in order for it to break even with its start up costs (Knežević, Rakočević & Đurić 2011). The gross profit ratio shows a quick snapshot of the anticipated revenues.

Leverage Ratios: these show how much an organization depends on its debt in funding its operations. The debt-to-equity ratio is a popular leverage ratio utilized in analyzing financial statements (Johnson 2013). The debt-to-equity ratio depicts the degree to which the company’s top executives are willing to utilize debt in funding the company’s operations. It is computed as follows: (Leases + Short-term debt + Long-term debt) / Equity (Lan 2014).

Vertical analysis

Besides ratio analysis, the other method that can be used to analyze financial statements is the use of vertical and horizontal analysis. Vertical analysis, as Lan (2014) pointed out, reiterates every figure in the income statement as a percentage of net sales. Vertical analysis is important as it allows the top managers to understand if expenses such as Cost of Goods Sold (COGS) are very high in comparison to sales (Andrijasevic & Pasic 2014).

In essence, vertical analysis is the proportional analysis of a fiscal statement in which every line item on the fiscal statement is listed as a percentage of another item (Routh 2014). This essentially implies that each line item on the balance sheet is stated as a percentage of total assets whilst on the income statement, each line item is stated as a percentage of gross sales (Teodor & Radu 2013). All in all, vertical analysis brings about common-size fiscal statements. Boyd et al. (2014) noted that common-size income statements present each of the amount in the income statement as a proportion of sales.

Horizontal/trend analysis

This is used to compare ratios and account balances over various periods of time. It can be used, for instance, in comparing a company’s sales in 2012 to the company’s 2013 sales (Boyd et al. 2014).The financial analysis for the two companies is illustrated exhaustively in the Study section. The analysis includes the horizontal/trend analysis, vertical analysis, and ratio analysis (Monea 2013). The horizontal analysis entails comparing fiscal information over a number of reporting periods. Horizontal analysis is therefore the review of the results of several periods of time (Luypaert, Van Caneghem & Van Uytbergen 2016).

Financial statement analysis is important due to several advantages it presents to an organization. Firstly, financial analysis offers an idea to investors about deciding on investing their money in a certain business organization (Damjibhai 2016). Secondly, various regulatory authorities such as IASB could ensure that the business organization is in fact following the necessary accounting standards (Routh 2014).

Therefore, the analysis enables the company to remain compliant (Ednlister 2012). Thirdly, the analysis of financial statements helps government agencies to analyze the taxation that is owed to the company (Beutler 2014). Fourthly, financial statement analysis enables the company to analyze its own performance over a certain period of time (Routh 2014).


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