This case weaves leadership and organizational culture principles into the strategic fabric of a modern firm competing in a global, competitive, high tech industry. The achievements of Atul Jain, founder, CEO, and Chairman of TEOCO, are extraordinary given his limited business expertise, compliant personality, and unconventional belief system – all which he has parlayed into a competitive advantage for the his mid-sized telecommunications software company.
The introduction of the case places TEOCO at a major juncture, having recently completed an acquisition which doubles the size of the company and committed to a new ownership structure with a venture capital …show more content…
The fast-cycle market is characterized by complexity, instability, and unpredictability – conditions that virtually eliminate the ability to shield competitive advantages from imitation and to achieve long-term sustainability. Furthermore, industry consolidation in TEOCO’s North American market both (1) requires the company to seek international expansion opportunities that allow it to leverage internal strengths and (2) competitively positions the firm against larger global service providers. The company’s ability to remain a viable contender is threatened in this ever-shifting landscape. Confronting these external forces, Atul has realized the value of having a strong financial partner. Incremental, internally-funded growth can be slow and limited in scope; but with access to investment capital there are substantial opportunities to be pursued in the global business support system / operations support system (BSS/OSS) market.
Beyond its start-up phase and 15 years older, TEOCO and its founder are developmentally at a stage where the appropriate risk/return profile has shifted. At this point, there is less time to recover if the company fails with “all of its eggs in one basket”. Also, Atul feels a deep sense of obligation to create liquidity for his loyal and invested employees. Without the backing of a financial partner, he is even beginning to consider possible exit