The Body Shop Case Analysis. The Challenges of Managing Business As Holistic Configuration
27 Pages Posted: 8 May 2020
Date Written: April 14, 2020
The paper analyses the case of The Body Shop in the mid-2010s, when a new CEO attempted to revitalize the brand through the development of the new corporate social responsibility (CSR) strategy. The paper briefly reviews the history of the company, noting that some important problems emerged as early as in the late 1990s, a few years before the takeover of the business by L’Oreal in 2006.
Three possible theoretical perspectives on the success of The Body Shop and its link to the social and political agenda of the founder, Anita Roddick, are reviewed: instrumental, cultural and configurational. The paper takes on the configurational perspective to demonstrate that the stagnation of the brand in the 2000s can be attributed to weakening alignment of the key business elements. From this perspective, the attempt to revitalize the brand through the externally looking strategy did not address the core of the problem and could not achieve its goals.
The paper concludes with a brief discussion of the impact of Anita Roddick on society in the context of the present-day challenges of capitalism as ideology.
Keywords: The Body Shop, social responsibility, business configuration, ethical capitalism
JEL Classification: N80, M14
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation