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Lagardere (0HB2) SWOT Analysis / TOWS Matrix / MBA Resources

Introduction to SWOT Analysis

SWOT Analysis / TOWS Matrix for Lagardere (United Kingdom)


Based on various researches at Oak Spring University , Lagardere is operating in a macro-environment that has been destablized by – competitive advantages are harder to sustain because of technology dispersion, increasing government debt because of Covid-19 spendings, banking and financial system is disrupted by Bitcoin and other crypto currencies, increasing inequality as vast percentage of new income is going to the top 1%, there is increasing trade war between United States & China, geopolitical disruptions, supply chains are disrupted by pandemic , technology disruption, talent flight as more people leaving formal jobs, etc



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Introduction to SWOT Analysis of Lagardere


SWOT stands for an organization’s Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats . At Oak Spring University, we believe that Lagardere can use SWOT analysis as a strategic management tool to assess the current internal strengths and weaknesses of the Lagardere, and to figure out the opportunities and threats in the macro environment – technological, environmental, political, economic, social, demographic, etc in which Lagardere operates in.

According to Harvard Business Review, 75% of the managers use SWOT analysis for various purposes such as – evaluating current scenario, strategic planning, new venture feasibility, personal growth goals, new market entry, Go To market strategies, portfolio management and strategic trade-off assessment, organizational restructuring, etc.




SWOT Objectives / Importance of SWOT Analysis and SWOT Matrix


SWOT analysis of Lagardere can be done for the following purposes –
1. Strategic planning of Lagardere
2. Improving business portfolio management of Lagardere
3. Assessing feasibility of the new initiative in United Kingdom
4. Making a Printing & Publishing sector specific business decision
5. Set goals for the organization
6. Organizational restructuring of Lagardere




Strengths of Lagardere | Internal Strategic Factors
What are Strengths in SWOT Analysis / TOWS Matrix / Weighted SWOT Analysis

The strengths of Lagardere are -

Successful track record of launching new products

– Lagardere has launched numerous new products in last few years, keeping in mind evolving customer preferences and competitive pressures. Lagardere has effective processes in place that helps in exploring new product needs, doing quick pilot testing, and then launching the products quickly using its extensive distribution network.

Ability to lead change in Printing & Publishing

– Lagardere is one of the leading players in the Printing & Publishing industry in United Kingdom. Over the years it has not only transformed the business landscape in the Printing & Publishing industry in United Kingdom but also across the existing markets. The ability to lead change has enabled Lagardere in – penetrating new markets, reaching out to new customers, and providing different value propositions to different customers in the international markets.

Organizational Resilience of Lagardere

– The covid-19 pandemic has put organizational resilience at the centre of everthing Lagardere does. Organizational resilience comprises - Financial Resilience, Operational Resilience, Technological Resilience, Organizational Resilience, Business Model Resilience, and Reputation Resilience.

Superior customer experience

– The customer experience strategy of Lagardere in Printing & Publishing industry is based on four key concepts – personalization, simplification of complex needs, prompt response, and continuous engagement.

Training and development

– Lagardere has one of the best training and development program in Services industry. The effectiveness of the training programs can be measured in – employees retention, in-house promotion, loyalty, new venture initiation, lack of conflict, and high level of both employees and customer engagement.

High switching costs

– The high switching costs that Lagardere has built up over years in its products and services combo offer has resulted in high retention of customers, lower marketing costs, and greater ability of the firm to focus on its customers.

Sustainable margins compare to other players in Printing & Publishing industry

– Lagardere has clearly differentiated products in the market place. This has enabled Lagardere to fetch slight price premium compare to the competitors in the Printing & Publishing industry. The sustainable margins have also helped Lagardere to invest into research and development (R&D) and innovation.

Low bargaining power of suppliers

– Suppliers of Lagardere in the Services sector have low bargaining power. Lagardere has further diversified its suppliers portfolio by building a robust supply chain across various countries. This helps Lagardere to manage not only supply disruptions but also source products at highly competitive prices.

Ability to recruit top talent

– Lagardere is one of the leading players in the Printing & Publishing industry in United Kingdom. It is in a position to attract the best talent available in United Kingdom. The firm has a robust talent identification program that helps in identifying the brightest.

Highly skilled collaborators

– Lagardere has highly efficient outsourcing and offshoring strategy. It has resulted in greater operational flexibility and bringing down the costs in highly price sensitive Printing & Publishing industry. Secondly the value chain collaborators of Lagardere have helped the firm to develop new products and bring them quickly to the marketplace.

Innovation driven organization

– Lagardere is one of the most innovative firm in Printing & Publishing sector.

Operational resilience

– The operational resilience strategy of Lagardere comprises – understanding the underlying the factors in the Printing & Publishing industry, building diversified operations across different geographies so that disruption in one part of the world doesn’t impact the overall performance of the firm, and integrating the various business operations and processes through its digital transformation drive.






Weaknesses of Lagardere | Internal Strategic Factors
What are Weaknesses in SWOT Analysis / TOWS Matrix / Weighted SWOT Analysis

The weaknesses of Lagardere are -

Need for greater diversity

– Lagardere has taken concrete steps on diversity, equity, and inclusion. But the efforts so far has resulted in limited success. It needs to expand the recruitment and selection process to hire more people from the minorities and underprivileged background.

High operating costs

– Compare to the competitors, Lagardere has high operating costs in the Printing & Publishing industry. This can be harder to sustain given the new emerging competition from nimble players who are using technology to attract Lagardere lucrative customers.

Products dominated business model

– Even though Lagardere has some of the most successful models in the Printing & Publishing industry, this business model has made each new product launch extremely critical for continuous financial growth of the organization. Lagardere should strive to include more intangible value offerings along with its core products and services.

Capital Spending Reduction

– Even during the low interest decade, Lagardere has not been able to do capital spending to the tune of the competition. This has resulted into fewer innovations and company facing stiff competition from both existing competitors and new entrants who are disrupting the Printing & Publishing industry using digital technology.

High dependence on existing supply chain

– The disruption in the global supply chains because of the Covid-19 pandemic and blockage of the Suez Canal illustrated the fragile nature of Lagardere supply chain. Even after few cautionary changes, Lagardere is still heavily dependent upon the existing supply chain. The existing supply chain though brings in cost efficiencies but it has left Lagardere vulnerable to further global disruptions in South East Asia.

Slow decision making process

– As mentioned earlier in the report, Lagardere has a very deliberative decision making approach. This approach has resulted in prudent decisions, but it has also resulted in missing opportunities in the Printing & Publishing industry over the last five years. Lagardere even though has strong showing on digital transformation primary two stages, it has struggled to capitalize the power of digital transformation in marketing efforts and new venture efforts.

High dependence on Lagardere ‘s star products

– The top 2 products and services of Lagardere still accounts for major business revenue. This dependence on star products in Printing & Publishing industry has resulted into insufficient focus on developing new products, even though Lagardere has relatively successful track record of launching new products.

Employees’ less understanding of Lagardere strategy

– From the outside it seems that the employees of Lagardere don’t have comprehensive understanding of the firm’s strategy. This is reflected in number of promotional campaigns over the last few years that had mixed messaging and competing priorities. Some of the strategic activities and services promoted in the promotional campaigns were not consistent with the organization’s strategy.

Increasing silos among functional specialists

– The organizational structure of Lagardere is dominated by functional specialists. It is not different from other players in the Printing & Publishing industry, but Lagardere needs to de-silo the office environment to harness the true potential of its workforce. Secondly the de-silo will also help Lagardere to focus more on services in the Printing & Publishing industry rather than just following the product oriented approach.

Workers concerns about automation

– As automation is fast increasing in the Printing & Publishing industry, Lagardere needs to come up with a strategy to reduce the workers concern regarding automation. Without a clear strategy, it could lead to disruption and uncertainty within the organization.

Slow to harness new channels of communication

– Even though competitors are using new communication channels such as Instagram, Tiktok, and Snap, Lagardere is slow explore the new channels of communication. These new channels of communication can help Lagardere to provide better information regarding Printing & Publishing products and services. It can also build an online community to further reach out to potential customers.




Lagardere Opportunities | External Strategic Factors
What are Opportunities in the SWOT Analysis / TOWS Matrix / Weighted SWOT Analysis


The opportunities of Lagardere are -

Creating value in data economy

– The success of analytics program of Lagardere has opened avenues for new revenue streams for the organization in Printing & Publishing industry. This can help Lagardere to build a more holistic ecosystem for Lagardere products in the Printing & Publishing industry by providing – data insight services, data privacy related products, data based consulting services, etc.

Remote work and new talent hiring opportunities

– The widespread usage of remote working technologies during Covid-19 has opened opportunities for Lagardere to expand its talent hiring zone. According to McKinsey Global Institute, 20% of the high end workforce in fields such as finance, information technology, can continously work from remote local post Covid-19. This presents a really great opportunity for Lagardere to hire the very best people irrespective of their geographical location.

Increase in government spending

– As the United States and other governments are increasing social spending and infrastructure spending to build economies post Covid-19, Lagardere can use these opportunities to build new business models that can help the communities that Lagardere operates in. Secondly it can use opportunities from government spending in Printing & Publishing sector.

Identify volunteer opportunities

– Covid-19 has impacted working population in two ways – it has led to people soul searching about their professional choices, resulting in mass resignation. Secondly it has encouraged people to do things that they are passionate about. This has opened opportunities for businesses to build volunteer oriented socially driven projects. Lagardere can explore opportunities that can attract volunteers and are consistent with its mission and vision.

Low interest rates

– Even though inflation is raising its head in most developed economies, Lagardere can still utilize the low interest rates to borrow money for capital investment. Secondly it can also use the increase of government spending in infrastructure projects to get new business.

Building a culture of innovation

– managers at Lagardere can make experimentation a productive activity and build a culture of innovation using approaches such as – mining transaction data, A/B testing of websites and selling platforms, engaging potential customers over various needs, and building on small ideas in the Printing & Publishing industry.

Lowering marketing communication costs

– 5G expansion will open new opportunities for Lagardere in the field of marketing communication. It will bring down the cost of doing business, provide technology platform to build new products in the Printing & Publishing industry, and it will provide faster access to the consumers.

Using analytics as competitive advantage

– Lagardere has spent a significant amount of money and effort to integrate analytics and machine learning into its operations in Printing & Publishing sector. This continuous investment in analytics has enabled Lagardere to build a competitive advantage using analytics. The analytics driven competitive advantage can help Lagardere to build faster Go To Market strategies, better consumer insights, developing relevant product features, and building a highly efficient supply chain.

Buying journey improvements

– Lagardere can improve the customer journey of consumers in the Printing & Publishing industry by using analytics and artificial intelligence. It can provide automated chats to help consumers solve their own problems, provide online suggestions to get maximum out of the products and services, and help consumers to build a community where they can interact with each other to develop new features and uses.

Harnessing reconfiguration of the global supply chains

– As the trade war between US and China heats up in the coming years, Lagardere can build a diversified supply chain model across various countries in - South East Asia, India, and other parts of the world. This reconfiguration of global supply chain can help Lagardere to buy more products closer to the markets, and it can leverage its size and influence to get better deal from the local markets.

Learning at scale

– Online learning technologies has now opened space for Lagardere to conduct training and development for its employees across the world. This will result in not only reducing the cost of training but also help employees in different part of the world to integrate with the headquarter work culture, ethos, and standards.

Reconfiguring business model

– The expansion of digital payment system, the bringing down of international transactions costs using Bitcoin and other blockchain based currencies, etc can help Lagardere to reconfigure its entire business model. For example it can used blockchain based technologies to reduce piracy of its products in the big markets such as China. Secondly it can use the popularity of e-commerce in various developing markets to build a Direct to Customer business model rather than the current Channel Heavy distribution network.

Reforming the budgeting process

- By establishing new metrics that will be used to evaluate both existing and potential projects Lagardere can not only reduce the costs of the project but also help it in integrating the projects with other processes within the organization.




Threats Lagardere External Strategic Factors
What are Threats in the SWOT Analysis / TOWS Matrix / Weighted SWOT Analysis


The threats of Lagardere are -

Stagnating economy with rate increase

– Lagardere can face lack of demand in the market place because of Fed actions to reduce inflation. This can lead to sluggish growth in the economy, lower demands, lower investments, higher borrowing costs, and consolidation in the Printing & Publishing industry.

Consumer confidence and its impact on Lagardere demand

– There is a high probability of declining consumer confidence, given – high inflammation rate, rise of gig economy, lower job stability, increasing cost of living, higher interest rates, and aging demography. All the factors contribute to people saving higher rate of their income, resulting in lower consumer demand in Printing & Publishing industry and other sectors.

Technology acceleration in Forth Industrial Revolution

– Lagardere has witnessed rapid integration of technology during Covid-19 in the Printing & Publishing industry. As one of the leading players in the industry, Lagardere needs to keep up with the evolution of technology in the Printing & Publishing sector. According to Mckinsey study top managers believe that the adoption of technology in operations, communications is 20-25 times faster than what they planned in the beginning of 2019.

Increasing international competition and downward pressure on margins

– Apart from technology driven competitive advantage dilution, Lagardere can face downward pressure on margins from increasing competition from international players. The international players have stable revenue in their home market and can use those resources to penetrate Lagardere prominent markets.

Technology disruption because of hacks, piracy etc

– The colonial pipeline illustrated, how vulnerable modern organization are to international hackers, miscreants, and disruptors. The cyber security interruption, data leaks, etc can seriously jeopardize the future growth of the organization.

Aging population

– As the populations of most advanced economies are aging, it will lead to high social security costs, higher savings among population, and lower demand for goods and services in the economy. The household savings in US, France, UK, Germany, and Japan are growing faster than predicted because of uncertainty caused by pandemic.

Regulatory challenges

– Lagardere needs to prepare for regulatory challenges as consumer protection groups and other pressure groups are vigorously advocating for more regulations on big business - to reduce inequality, to create a level playing field, to product data privacy and consumer privacy, to reduce the influence of big money on democratic institutions, etc. This can lead to significant changes in the Printing & Publishing industry regulations.

High dependence on third party suppliers

– Lagardere high dependence on third party suppliers can disrupt its processes and delivery mechanism. For example -the current troubles of car makers because of chip shortage is because the chip companies started producing chips for electronic companies rather than car manufacturers.

Trade war between China and United States

– The trade war between two of the biggest economies can hugely impact the opportunities for Lagardere in Printing & Publishing industry. The Printing & Publishing industry is already at various protected from local competition in China, with the rise of trade war the protection levels may go up. This presents a clear threat of current business model in Chinese market.

Backlash against dominant players

– US Congress and other legislative arms of the government are getting tough on big business especially technology companies. The digital arm of Lagardere business can come under increasing regulations regarding data privacy, data security, etc.

New competition

– After the dotcom bust of 2001, financial crisis of 2008-09, the business formation in US economy had declined. But in 2020 alone, there are more than 1.5 million new business applications in United States. This can lead to greater competition for Lagardere in the Printing & Publishing sector and impact the bottomline of the organization.

Barriers of entry lowering

– As technology is more democratized, the barriers to entry to Printing & Publishing industry are lowering. It can presents Lagardere with greater competitive threats in the near to medium future. Secondly it will also put downward pressure on pricing throughout the Printing & Publishing sector.

Learning curve for new practices

– As the technology based on artificial intelligence and machine learning platform is getting complex, Lagardere may face longer learning curve for training and development of existing employees. This can open space for more nimble competitors in the field of Printing & Publishing sector.




Weighted SWOT Analysis of Lagardere Template, Example


Not all factors mentioned under the Strengths, Weakness, Opportunities, and Threats quadrants in the SWOT Analysis are equal. Managers at Lagardere needs to zero down on the relative importance of each factor mentioned in the Strengths, Weakness, Opportunities, and Threats quadrants. We can provide the relative importance to each factor by assigning relative weights. Weighted SWOT analysis process is a three stage process –

First stage for doing weighted SWOT analysis of Lagardere is to rank the strengths and weaknesses of the organization. This will help you to assess the most important strengths and weaknesses of the firm and which one of the strengths and weaknesses mentioned in the initial lists are marginal and can be left out.

Second stage for conducting weighted SWOT analysis of Lagardere is to give probabilities to the external strategic factors thus better understanding the opportunities and threats arising out of macro environment changes and developments.

Third stage of constructing weighted SWOT analysis of Lagardere to provide strategic recommendations includes – joining likelihood of external strategic factors such as opportunities and threats to the internal strategic factors – strengths and weaknesses. You should start with external factors as they will provide the direction of the overall industry. Secondly by joining probabilities with internal strategic factors can help the company not only strategic fit but also the most probably strategic trade-off that Lagardere needs to make to build a sustainable competitive advantage.



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