Crosley

Posted: 17 Jul 2009

See all articles by Tom Nicholas

Tom Nicholas

Harvard University - Entrepreneurial Management Unit

David Chen

Harvard Business School

Date Written: June 15, 2009

Abstract

In October 1941, a top secret envoy from the U.S. military was sent to Crosley Corporation in Cincinnati, Ohio to request their assistance to construct a weapon that would drastically strengthen the defenses of U.S. troops: the proximity fuze. Such a fuze would allow enemy aircraft to be shot down with a rate of accuracy well above that of previous weaponry. The task would be a challenging one, as conventional wisdom held that it took at least four years for a weapon to go from concept to production, whereas the proximity fuze was needed on a shorter time frame. Moreover, the production process would be complex, requiring hundreds of components produced by dozens of manufacturers, all of which Crosley would have to assemble to produce the finished product. Would Crosley accept the assignment?

Suggested Citation

Nicholas, Tom and Chen, David, Crosley (June 15, 2009). HBS Case No. 809-160; Harvard Business School Entrepreneurial Management Unit. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1434512

Tom Nicholas (Contact Author)

Harvard University - Entrepreneurial Management Unit ( email )

Cambridge, MA 02163
United States

David Chen

Harvard Business School ( email )

Soldiers Field Road
Morgan 270C
Boston, MA 02163
United States

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