Cree, Inc.: Which Bright Future?

Posted: 18 Feb 2012

See all articles by David J. Collis

David J. Collis

Harvard University - Business School (HBS)

Mary Furey

Harvard Business School

Date Written: March 1, 2011

Abstract

When global warming concerns caused governments around the world to ban the incandescent lightbulb, many manufacturers began scrambling to produce products to fill the gap. Compact fluorescent lightbulbs, already on the market, seemed the obvious replacement. But light-emitting diodes (LEDs) were attracting attention as a more efficient alternative in lighting, steadily working their way up the value chain from winky-blinky applications into the now-flourishing backlighting market. Into this changing market entered Cree, Inc., a North Carolina-based LED chip and component manufacturer. This case explores whether Cree should pursue the LED monitor and television backlighting markets, or abandon them to focus on the potential "greenfield" market in general lighting.

Learning Objective: Enables a discussion around the strategic choice of scope and a calculation of the willingness to pay concept; facilitates a discussion of the strategic issues that are involved when a new technology substitutes for a traditional technology.

Suggested Citation

Collis, David J. and Furey, Mary, Cree, Inc.: Which Bright Future? (March 1, 2011). Harvard Business School Strategy Unit Case No. 711-457. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2006698

David J. Collis (Contact Author)

Harvard University - Business School (HBS) ( email )

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

Mary Furey

Harvard Business School ( email )

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

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