Barilla Spa Case Analysis  

Subject: Business
Type: Analytical Essay
Pages: 6
Word count: 1562
Topics: Business Ethics, Business Plan, Management, SWOT analysis


The main focus of this paper is to perform an analysis on the Barilla Spa Company. The study thus seeks to identify some of the key concerns pertaining to the business, and consequently analyzes the possible courses of action that may need to be taken in order to remedy the situation. Finally, the paper draws conclusions based on the analysis done over the operation of the company. 

Most Significant Facts of the Case

One of the most relevant issues affecting the company is the management problem. For instance, the director does not fully comprehend how best he should be able to apply a previously formed business strategy that had been proposed by his predecessor. Hence, this clearly shows that a new strategy needs to be enforced, and also displays some element of dysfunctionality within the management system. The company has established itself in the market as the leading provider of the pasta, which it specializes in producing. The success can be widely attributed to the fact that the founders had previously engaged in extensive marketing practices through the use of different advertisement procedures. For instance, the products were also sold in different brands so as to better capture the market needs. The other merit of the company was the supply of the goods to other countries as well. The company is also organized into several sections, with each section handling specialized products (Hammond, 2017). 

Besides the engagement of the company in the production of Pasta, the Barilla Spa Company has also been actively engaged in the manufacturing and selling process of the other related products. The company also offered fresh products to supplement the sales of the other products. 

Due to the different plants, capacity of production, and the high technological advancements, the company also has the ability to produce large amount of products. A majority of the produce is transported to one major location before being distributed to the end users. However, the distributions systems differed for the long-lasting and the fresh food products. The main outlets of the products that are produced by the company include supermarkets and small retails shops among others, 

The distribution of the longer lasting products to a supermarket chains was mainly done via the company’s own distribution agency. However, the products that were meant for individual supermarkets was done through the use of the Organized Distributor companies, which submitted their orders eight days in advance before they would start to receive the shipments. The proposed solution was to perform the delivery services in good enough time as opposed to the conventional method that involved an equitable distribution system by the company based on their assumption of the customers’ demands.

One of the areas that the company has excelled in is the advertisement process, where top athletes from different countries are used to market the products. Furthermore, the company is well advanced with regards to the technological aspect.

The Main Issues

One of the most relevant issues pertaining to this case is the fact that there exist variations in the demands of the company’s products. As a consequence, the fluctuations lead to overburdening of the company’s production and distribution operations. Due to the variation in demand, the company has considered the strategy of production of the goods in high enough numbers so as to satisfy the demands. However, this was a disadvantage to the company since it led to very high expenses. Also, some of the production processes require that the products stay for a while in the machinery. However, increasing the production rate may significantly lower the qualities expected.

The other main issue involved in the case revolves around the fact that the customers are reluctant to adopt the newly formulated strategies. For instance, a variety of the customers did not see the urgency of complying with the requirements that the company demanded of them. The fact that the company’s own personnel were opposed to the idea can be said to have presented one of the most challenge to the implementation of the strategy. The most important issue that ought to be considered is the fact that the operations may not go well if the management is not in good harmony.

A minor issue that affects the company is the competitive prices of the the products. Since the product is essential in the market, competitors tend to lower their prices which disrupt the pricing of the Barilla Spa. The other issue that may be negatively affecting the company can be related to the technical aspect. For instance, while sophisticated machines have been employed, there is a challenge on the production of high volumes of products that are in demand. Due to this, the company fails to meet the orders required. 

Alternative Actions and their Assessments

The main problem that the company is faced with is the fact that it cannot react to the market requirements. The problem negatively affects the operation of the company since there is no data to be analyzed to make forecast. The data is only available to the distributors since they interact with the consumers. From the problems that have been identified above, the main alternative action that may be taken to ensure that the problem is corrected includes the abolishment of the distribution companies so as to ensure that the company directly supplies the products to the end users themselves. 

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The outcome of such an action would mean much more control over the supply and demand process, hence ensuring that the consumer patterns are identified, and ultimately predicted so as to manufacture the goods accordingly. Furthermore, there has always been the challenge of ascertaining the number of products for the distributors to take into their inventories. Distributors are usually unwilling to take new products due to the many product types that exist in the market. The advantage in undertaking this alternative lies in the fact that the company may need to acquire analytical software and related tools to enable them to predict the various market conditions, and hence react to it appropriately. The financial aspect associated with this strategy may involve the need to invest more capital so as to establish the distribution agency and the construction of warehouses. The risk is that the operation may not go as wanted during the first few months of operation (Johnson, Sorensen & Yaeger, 2014).

The recommendation can be said to be feasible from a technical perspective because the distributors themselves maintain inventory of the company’s products, and later supply them to the retail markets when required. On the same note, the Barilla Spa could also employ the same criteria. Furthermore, this will enable the company to increase its profitability and efficiency of distributing the goods. The company has the required resources that may be used in financing the strategy

The other strategy that may be exercised is the introduction of policies demanding that all the work personnel must work according to the on-time delivery technique. The benefit of the strategy is that the goods will be supplied as needed and will not rely on the placement of orders. Furthermore, the sales team needs to be provided with the detailed importance of the method. As can been seen in the case, the idea has constantly faced rejection without the due analysis of its significance. Hence, holding a training program is expected to raise the awareness level of all the parties involved. To ensure that the strategy goes according to plan, it is important to carry out a pilot test so as to provide the company with all the required data concerning the application of the method. The data gathered shall then be projected to reflect the effects in the long term. 

An alternative to the technical issue whereby the machines are not able to produce the required quantities of goods might be solved by sourcing the goods to other companies. Since the Barilla Spa Company has already succeeded in meeting the expectations of the market, their demands are popular, hence more demand for them. By partnering with other companies, both will benefit in different ways. The sourcing of products will be done by using the same techniques as used in the company so as to ensure that the quality is maintained. The risks involved in the strategy are that the consumers may perceive the change of production to be as sign of reduction in the quality of the products. The strategy would be much welcome to the other companies since it may be seen as a means of increasing the sales of their own products. 

Recommendations and Conclusions

From the analyses done above, the most preferable alternative is the formation of a company owned distribution system. The reason for this selection is that despite the fact that the strategy may cost some fortune in the short-term, the long term effects will ensure that the costs are minimized. The problems affecting the company not only act to interrupt the production process, but also potentially reduce the profit that may otherwise be gained from. Hence, the paper presents some of the main characteristics of the company, highlights some of the most important issues, and presents the possible alternatives that may be utilized in overcoming the problem.

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  1. Hammond, J. (2017). Barilla SpA (A).
  2. Johnson, H., Sorensen, P., & Yaeger, T. (2014). Critical Issues in Organization Development. Charlotte: Information Age Publishing.
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