Academic Master

Business and Finance

Achieving Global Competitive Advantage: The Case of Apple Corporation


Meeting global competitiveness has become an essential component in organizations to achieve the competitive advantage as well as taking market leadership. In this paper, I have chosen to analyze Apple Company in references to the star analysis. Apple can be describes as a global company that specially deals in computer software, personal computers and technologies that relate to computers and software. The company is possibly familiar because of the Macintosh series of computers (Amit, & Zott 2012). The company has become and put itself strategically as the world force in the marketplace technology with huge revenue turnovers as well as profits.Apple Company began off and was known as Apple Computer Corporation was founded in April 1976 in California. The company is an organization that is still based in the United States. The company’s name was later changed to Apple Inc. In 2007 as it was determined to change its focus from being a sole dealer in personal computers to the general electronics consumer that comprises of iPods, for which the organization is recognized about (Hitt, Ireland, & Hoskisson 2012). To successfully analyze Apple Company, the star analysis (Spuller, 2007) will form the basis or framework on which this work will rely on. The star analysis will offer the general guide on which range of markets as well as countries relating to Apple will be looked at. This would help in the demonstration on how Apple attires to attain global competitive edge, through five various features including Home country, supply country, partner country, customer country.

Home Country

The first part of this assignment will look at the home country features. Apple Company was founded in California in 1976, U.S. and that has remained its home country up to now. In spite of the fact that the company has expanded and moved into several foreign country marketplaces, Apple Company has maintained its head office in Cupertino, California. The nationality brand is essential in making the company achieve its competitive advantage in other nations (Chan, & Selden 2013). Through the home country factor, the company can promote its products as well as achieving the products image. The company strives to embrace corporate social responsibilities to the home country. If an organization receives a warm reception in the home country, then it means they can now move to other countries to look for markets.

Every company takes pride in its home country since it forms the foundation and ground on which the business is anchored up on. The stability in the home country is crucial for the growth of business Hitt, Ireland, & Hoskisson 2012). For instance, the security in California and the entire U.S will enable Apple Company operates in a healthy environment. This is because factors in the home country have the ability to make or break a business (Grant 2016). Moreover, home country has a lot to offer to the business. First, it provides available consumers to the business. For instance, if there is instability in the home country, there will be a shortage of users. The home country would also benefit from the skilled labor as well as the products. Apple Company has obtained skilled labor from its home country, California, U.S. Some of these professional have been hired by the company to work for the company in other countries (Grant 2016). Finally, the company is expected to maintain legal and ethical standards required to conduct business in their home country.

Partner Country

For organizations to achieve its competitive advantage partner country features become essential. Apple Company has various partners worldwide so that it can attain its objectives. One of the key and important partners is the United Kingdom network operator O2. In 2007, both Apple and O2 stroke a deal which could prove a significant revolution for the two companies. Apple was able to obtain large sums of money in that signed deal (Grant 2016). It was also understood that Apple Company would be able to get 40% of the revenue income that O2 would make from its consumers when they use iPhone. In the negotiation process until nay announcement of this deal was made, it is understood that the Apple company made several deals in the UK including four major networks; Orange, O2, Vodafone, and T-Mobile. Hence, with this case, the Apple Corporation got its access to UK marketplaces with the iPhone as well as the major deals signed with other corporations (Grant 2016). That’s how Apple, a foreign competitor got entry to the marketplaces and attained a competitive advantage over the local competitors. One of the theories that have been applied here is the value chain that supposes that a manufacturing system is consisted of many subsystems.

Moreover, Apple Company has also opened partnerships and shops in India which have also become its partner country. Since its entry in India, Apple smartphones have got its largest consumers in India Hitt, Ireland, & Hoskisson 2012). The company has partnered with Indian based company known as Conglomerate Tata Group to open stores in Indian’s group, Croma which is multi-brand electronics. Besides, the Apple Company plans to put up several stores in India. The company expects to model these stores on the world design and hopes the design will offer the best experience to its customers by depicting the range of Apple products (Grant 2016). Additionally, Apple corporations have boosted its marketing and sales India. The company employs level distributors who are making phones available in many stores in every town. Overall, Apple Company has several partner countries including UK, India, and China among many other nations. The company has several deals that have seen it make huge profit revenue. Therefore Partner country is essential for any business to attain a competitive advantage over its rivals.

Supplier Country

Supplies country is vital for any business that seeks to gain the competitive edge over its competitors. Apple Corporation has several supply countries including China and Asia among many others Hitt, Ireland, & Hoskisson 2012). It is understood that Apple sources some products from different countries. The company gets some of its products from Asia, China, and the UK among other countries. However, the company finds it challenging to sources products from other countries of difficulty in maintaining legal and ethical standards with the suppliers. Apple Corporation has applied the star analysis technique to get the completive advantage. The company has expanded its capacity on the global scale (Grant 2016). The companies have also opened several stores in different countries. Hence the company has gained the reputation in counters that it partners with including UK, India, and China among other countries.

By applying O2 as well as the huge customer base, the company ensured it gained the entry into the marked place. Apple Company depends on lower cost on manufacturing in different countries including China. The stability in supply country is essential for any company to trade in that particular country. For instance, if there is unrest in supply country, there who be the shortage of supply of products that a company would need. Additional, if the cost of labor in supply country is higher than it would be difficult for the company to gets its supply effectively (Akana, et al., 2013). In the case of Apple, it experienced high labor cost in China that took away the advantage of cost in its products Hitt, Ireland, & Hoskisson 2012). Therefore the supply country should provide a healthy environment so that companies that depend on its supply would get products and services without interference (Ward, & Peppard 2016).

Apple company would strive to work with supply country that has all the factors to enable Apple expand its business and buy its products. Stability of a country is essential for any business to thrive. Besides, supply countries are expected to have quality products and skilled labor. Through this, Apple Company would be able to conduct their activities in that country without any hitch. However, the company has not experienced worrying political instability in supply countries.

Customer country

Customers form the essential center of any business. Without customers, there is no business. That is why recognizing and making one’s customer comfortable is the objective of most organizations. Apple appreciates its customers using various ways. One of the ways that Apple Company uses to get to customer’s country is by identifying customers’ insight and tastes. The company produces products of different flavors (Grant 2016). The company has also opened up stores in several countries so that the consumer can readily get the products they want available. In addition to the products that the business sells, the stores sell other related products such as digital cameras, software titles and camcorders (Bergvall-Kåreborn, & Howcroft 2013). Apple Company takes pride in forming and building attracting and pleasing experience with its consumers with products which are stylish. Recently, the company released two new iPhones that include 5s and 5c which is less expensive. The company is trying to substantially capture the most market share among its customers.

Apple is committed to introducing better personal computing services to its customers by producing innovative hardware and software as well as internet offerings (Baroto, Abdullah, & Wan 2012). The company rolls programs that are service based on the comments, complaints band questions they get from customers. The structure of the industry within its external factors and attractiveness is purely based on the purpose of consumers satisfaction as well and customer familiar elements of the business (Bharadwaj, et al. 2013). Additionally, the corporations various related software, peripherals, networking solutions, services as well as digital applications and content. Overall, the business atmosphere has become extremely competitive and hence it is crucial for any company gaining the entry to the market to develop and implement a strategic plan on the market especially concerning customer needs.

Apple Company depends on customer country different countries including China, Japan, UK, and India. The stability in customer country is essential for any company to trade in that particular country. For instance, if there is unrest in consumer country, there who be a shortage of consumers or rather the company’s products would not be sold. In the case of Apple, it has an active relationship with customer countries (Thompson, et al..2013). The company strives by all means to maintain that safe and healthy relationship. Hence the client’s country is expected to provide a suitable environment that is favorable to the business. However, the company is also projected to maintain legal and ethical standards required to conduct business in a particular country.


In conclusion, Apple cooptation is a big global company which has experience success for many years and has been able to effectively achieved the global competitive edge over its rivals. This can be attributed to several reasons. First, the company’s strategies that it has been applying including the use of suppliers strategies in various parts of the world has seen it succeed. This has enabled the company to be on top of its competitors. The company has continuously come up with fresh innovative ideas and products. Second, Apple has attained a solid ground in which it develops its home country; U.S. Apple company is successful both it domestic and external markets. Overall, the company can be successful since it has demonstrated how a company can be dominant in national and foreign marketplaces. For instance, the company’s partnership with O2 in the UK has given it a wider international market. Finally, with strategies on opening stores in many countries, Apple Corporation is destined for success. The company has carefully applied all the factors that that are necessary for a company to be the market leader.

References List

Akana, J, Andre, B, Bataillou, et al. 2013. “Packaging. U.S”. Patent D679,715.

Amit, R. & Zott, C 2012. “Creating value through business model innovation.” MIT Sloan Management Review, 53(3), p.41.

Baroto, M.B, Abdullah, B, & Wan, H 2012. “Hybrid strategy: A new strategy for competitive advantage.” International Journal of Business and Management, 7(20), p.120.

Bergvall-Kåreborn, B, & Howcroft, D 2013. “The Apple business model: Crowdsourcing mobile applications.” In Accounting Forum (Vol. 37, No. 4, pp. 280-289). Elsevier.

Bharadwaj, A, El Sawy, O, Pavlou, P, & Venkatraman, N 2013. “Digital business strategy: toward the next generation of insights.” Mis Quarterly, 37(2), pp.471-482.

Chan, J, Pun, N, & Selden, M 2013. “The politics of global production: Apple, Foxconn and China’s new working class.” New Technology, Work and Employment, 28(2), pp.100-115.

Grant, R.M., 2016. Contemporary strategy analysis: Text and Cases edition. John Wiley & Sons.

Hitt, M, Ireland, B, & Hoskisson, R 2012. “Strategic management cases: competitiveness and globalization.” Cengage Learning.

Thompson, A., Peteraf, M, Gamble, J, Strickland III, A, & Jain, A.K 2013. “Crafting & Executing Strategy” 19/e: The Quest for Competitive Advantage: Concepts and Cases. McGraw-Hill Education.

Ward, J, & Peppard, J, 2016. “The Strategic Management of Information Systems: Building a Digital Strategy.” John Wiley & Sons.



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