Quanta Research Institute: Rainforest or Hothouse?

Jyun-Cheng Wang

National Tsing Hua University

Howard H. Yu

IMD International

September 15, 2010

Harvard Business School General Management Unit case no. 611-024

Barry Lam, the CEO and Founder of Quanta Computer (the largest notebook computer manufacturer worldwide), has recognized for many years, that he had to transform the company to decrease its dependence on producing commodity hardware for other global brands and move the firm into areas of higher value-added products and services. But how could he transform an organization that was rooted in low cost manufacturing and supply chain management into one that creates innovative new products and commands premium prices? The existing organization was built to operate in a highly constrained innovation space, and the internal resistance to change often seemed insurmountable. Meanwhile, the firm had to continue delivering predictable revenues. Lam launched the Quanta Research Institute (QRI), a targeted effort to foster industrial research as a vehicle for organizational transformation and to build differentiation in a commodity world. The case examines how QRI sources ideas, and discusses how Quanta will use China as a test market for new products and services.

Learning Objective:
Examine the context and motivation for the establishment of an industrial research organization.

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Date posted: March 18, 2012  

Suggested Citation

Wang, Jyun-Cheng and Yu, Howard H., Quanta Research Institute: Rainforest or Hothouse? (September 15, 2010). Harvard Business School General Management Unit case no. 611-024. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2023544

Contact Information

Jyun-Cheng Wang (Contact Author)
National Tsing Hua University ( email )
Hsin Chu 3
Howard H. Yu
IMD International ( email )
Ch. de Bellerive 23
P.O. Box 915
CH-1001 Lausanne
HOME PAGE: http://www.imd.org/about/facultystaff/Yu.cfm
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