Case 1: Uncovering
product launch plans
A major international pharmaceutical company
faced the impending expiration of patent protection
for a profitable product. The client needed
to prepare for competitive initiatives by
generic drug companies.
The client needed to know which generic drug
companies intended to bring out a competing
product, the precise nature of these products,
and how close the competitors were to actually
bringing such products to market.
- SRS Intelligence studied the development
and manufacturing processes of generic
drug companies and other industry issues.
- Sources were identified in each target
company and certain peripheral entities
who would likely know relevant information.
- Scenarios were devised for approaching
- SRS Intelligence engaged these individuals
in discussions that touched on the client's
SRS Intelligence identified which of the
target companies was preparing a competing
product and determined the stage of development.
The client was able to make appropriate
plans to protect its revenue stream.
Case 2: Benchmarking:
customer service process
A Fortune 500 manufacturer of technology-based
products for consumers and businesses needed
to improve its customer service process
and reduce costs.
The client needed detailed metrics for the
customer service process of a major competitor
in order to determine how to improve its
own process. Other consultants had failed
to obtain this Intelligence.
- SRS Intelligence reviewed the results
of other consultants' unsuccessful efforts,
debriefed internal experts at the client
firm and reviewed primary and secondary
published sources about the targeted competitor.
- A collection plan was developed on
the basis of the client's (and the previous
consultants') assumption about the structure
of the competitor's customer service process.
- SRS Intelligence detected an anomaly
early in the collection effort using its
unique Dynamic Targeting™ methodology,
changed the focus of collection, and found
new targets and new sources for information
- An accurate, detailed picture was painstakingly
pieced together which differed totally
from the client's initial assumption.
The client gained an in-depth understanding
based on full details of the competitor's
actual customer service process, including
process and performance metrics. With this
knowledge, the client was able to evaluate
its own business process and to formulate
a new strategy.
Case 3: In-depth
A division of a major technology-based company
was suddenly confronted by a new and aggressive
competitor led by executives who were totally
unknown in the industry.
The client urgently needed to know the goals,
plans, and management capabilities of the
"new kids on the block".
- SRS Intelligence quickly researched
the structure and dynamics of the market
and industry in question.
- A collection plan suited to the industry
and the sensitive nature of the project
was developed and various kinds of researchers
were used as collection proceeded.
- Persistence, imagination and Dynamic
Targeting™ all contributed to the
identification of unique sources in a
variety of business and other spheres
and the acquisition of historical and
current information required for a penetrating
SRS Intelligence gave the client an in-depth
profile of each the competitor's leading
executives, an evaluation of their management
capabilities, and a credible assessment
of their probable intentions (which subsequently
proved to be correct). The client used this
Intelligence to devise and pursue strategic
and tactical actions in various spheres.
Case 4: Strategic intent and plans (International)
A division of a Fortune 500 company that
is the dominant player in its industry learned
of an unexpected foreign acquisition by
an aggressive and innovative domestic competitor.
The competitor teamed with obscure foreign
partners for the acquisition, which they
portrayed as the first step by an alliance
with a global strategy. The client feared
that the competitor's moves would ultimately
limit its own options overseas. The only
information available was a brief article
in a foreign business publication, which
had triggered the client's concern when
it was found during routine media monitoring.
The client urgently needed to know what
precisely the competitor was doing overseas,
the identity and intentions of its foreign
partners, and the competitor's goals and
plans, together with the probable strategic
implications of the acquisition.
- SRS Intelligence studied the client's
industry and debriefed the client to gain
an understanding of possible and probable
strategies, then developed indicators
of various approaches that the competitor
- A collection plan was devised for a
simultaneous secondary source and field
research effort by overseas research teams
against multiple foreign targets in several
European and Pac-Rim countries.
- Unique resources were mobilized in
several countries and complex scenarios
were designed as required to acquire certain
- Some sources were contacted by in-country
researchers and other targets were approached
from distant countries. To avoid alerting
the domestic competitor, no contacts were
made from the USA.
- Dynamic Targeting™, including
on-going close contact with the client
and with another, specialized consultant
also engaged by the client, ensured that
findings were exploited in a comprehensive
and synergistic manner to identify, home
in on, and engage sources and to get the
SRS Intelligence clarified what the competitor
was actually doing, as well as the intentions
of the competitor and its foreign partners,
and was able to give the client comfort
that the competitor's foreign initiative
posed no strategic threat. SRS Intelligence
also laid the groundwork for future expanded
monitoring of the competitor's activity
in the relevant foreign markets.
Case 5: Sources
of competitor advantage
A major industry player that provided a
critical service to healthcare professionals
failed to match the financial performance
of another large player. Executives wanted
to know why their competitor was more profitable.
Identify the sources of a competitor's superior
- SRS Intelligence studied the client's
industry, debriefed client executives
and managers, and interviewed industry
observers and experts to identify drivers
of financial performance.
- The client and its competitors were
found to provide essentially a commodity
service of similar quality and at virtually
the same price. Accounts receivable was
the sole source of competitive advantage
that could explain the difference in profitability.
- SRS Intelligence showed the client
that a targeted assessment of the competitor's
relevant business process would be more
useful and cost-effective than an all-encompassing
- A review of the client's own business
processes led to a targeted collection
plan that focused on the competitor's
- SRS Intelligence identified, targeted,
and engaged sources within the target's
IT function and succeeded in developing
a detailed picture of the competitor's
process improvements, including work performed
by outside IT consultants.
SRS Intelligence gave the client precise
guidance for improving its accounts receivable
process and boosting profitability.
Case 6: Web-based
supply chain innovations
A Fortune 500 company that sells science-based
products used by a wide range of industries
was moving slowly on use of the Internet
to rationalize its supply-chain activities.
Managers believed their company should move
more quickly in this direction, but had
no hard evidence to support their position.
Determine goals, plans, and activities of
all the client's competitors in the area
of web-based supply chain innovations.
- SRS Intelligence debriefed client personnel,
reviewed materials provided by the client
and from secondary sources, and defined
the ways in which the Internet could facilitate
supply chain rationalization in the client's
- A collection plan was devised that
focused on the IT function in each competitor,
using information gleaned from the trade
press and other secondary sources, as
well as primary materials such as presentations
by competitor personnel at industry conferences.
IT managers and personnel in each of the
competing companies were identified and
- SRS Intelligence acquired sources in
the IT function of the target companies
and obtained from them the required information.
SRS Intelligence uncovered the goals, plans,
capabilities, and activities of all the
competitors regarding the use of the Internet
in supply-chain rationalization. The client's
IT team used this knowledge to make a compelling
case to executive management for accelerated
Case 7: Litigation
A leading business services firm that serves
Fortune 500 and other large companies had
recently dissolved an alliance with a foreign
partner. The client was concerned that its
erstwhile partner was violating a non-compete
agreement that precluded each former partner
from seeking business from the other's pre-alliance
accounts for a certain period.
Determine for litigation planning purposes
if the former alliance partner had approached
specific accounts in violation of the non-compete
- SRS Intelligence developed and implemented
a collection plan based on simultaneous
activity in the USA and overseas by a
variety of researchers, including some
SRS Intelligence found evidence that the
former alliance partner had approached only
one of the specified accounts in apparent
violation of the non-compete agreement.
Information about how various customers
and prospects perceived the client and its
competitors also was uncovered. The client
decided there was not sufficient cause for
litigation and avoided considerable expense.
Incidentally, the client also gained knowledge
useful for business development purposes.
Case 8: USA market
entry/JV Partner Search & Screen
A large foreign defense manufacturer sought
a continued return on expertise it had developed
and capital investments it had made in developing
and producing materials for a specific project.
The client perceived a promising global
market for new end-uses and decided to begin
by entering the USA market.
Verify the business opportunity, develop
a market entry strategy, and, if a JV with
a local firm were determined to be the preferred
mode, carry out a JV partner search & screen
and provide a short list of preferred JV
partners in the USA.
- SRS Intelligence carried out intensive
secondary and field research on the relevant
markets and the niche industry that serves
them. Industry players are small, secretive,
mainly privately-owned firms.
- Numerous interviews were conducted
with industry observers, government and
private sector experts, and management
and staff of all the major players to
determine both industry dynamics and market
- SRS Intelligence determined the strengths
and weaknesses of the major players and
also profiled their managements.
SRS Intelligence verified the market opportunity
and determined that the preferred entry
mode was a JV with a leading USA player,
in which the client would provide, on an
exclusive basis, high-performance materials
using its unique capabilities. The client
received a short list of preferred partners,
with a complete rationale for each one (including
an assessment of the leading executives).
Afterwards, SRS Intelligence set up meetings
for the client's executives with executives
at each candidate firm and assisted the
client at these meetings and with subsequent
contacts and negotiations. Ultimately, the
client signed an agreement precisely with
the candidate firm that SRS Intelligence
had ranked as the most appropriate partner
and the company most likely to desire a
JV with the client.
Case 9: Due diligence
A manufacturing firm with operations in
several regions sought to increase market
share. It was confronted in one important
market by a tough, new, privately-owned
local competitor that offered consistently
lower pricing. The client, which has expanded
its reach both by establishing new operations
and by acquiring existing local firms, did
not know if the competitor -- a potential
acquisition target -- was temporarily "buying
business" or had a long-term cost advantage.
The client urgently needed to know the manufacturing
cost structure, profitability, and pricing
strategy of the competitor/potential acquisition
- SRS Intelligence quickly developed
an analytical framework based on industry
economics and a financial model.
- A collection plan suited to the industry
and the nature of the target was developed.
- Sources inside and outside the target
were identified and engaged and all necessary
information was obtained for a thorough
operational analysis and the construction
of a pro forma income statement.
2001-2005 SRS Intelligence. All rights reserved.
SRS Intelligence gave the client an in-depth
profile of the competitor's operations,
an evaluation of their production and marketing
capabilities, and a solid assessment of
their profitability and pricing strategy.
The client used these insights to devise
and pursue an enhanced marketing strategy
and to assess the competitor as a potential
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