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Buyers must master art of the particular

If stock-picking fails to beat the index, why should picking companies? It won’t, unless mergers carefully match the firms involved.

Beating the west at its own game

Commercial success with innovation depends less on the innovations themselves than on the other qualities of a firm. Sony’s use of Bell Labs technology is the classic example.

Facing supermarket forces

Is Wal-Mart’s entry into the UK market a sign of global retailing? It’s an interesting move, when Wal-Mart itself is solidly small-town American.

The myth of excellence

In the black-and-white world of business opinion, Marks and Spencer is now firmly out of fashion. But corporate success depends on establishing and defining one’s own self.

Alight here for a business platform

George Westinghouse was a titan of American industry. Like Bill Gates, he made a fortune by controlling a vital standard. He also lost a large one by overextending himself.

Where size is not everything

Concentration in the car industry is increasing as the market goes global: a common story, and an untrue one.

The car that lost its way

BMW has a chequered history, and if the current management had learned lessons from the past they would never have purchased Rover.

Perennial hits hard times

What makes a successful retailer? It seems that Marks and Spencer may have forgotten the capabilities that put them on top.

Why the last shall be first and the first shall fade...

Being the first to innovate is rarely the road to riches many presume. Business history is paved with industries dominated by followers.

A world of difference

While accounting firms are “going global”, their rationale for doing so does not apply to other industries.