This two-part case traces the evolution of the Tata Group, one of India’s largest and well-known business groups, from inception until date.
The first case principally focuses on Ratan Tata’s leadership of the Tata Group, from 1991 to 2012. Tata Group History, the first section of the case, traces the early years of the Tata Group, its management philosophy, the leadership years of its legendary chairman, JRD Tata and ends with the elevation of Ratan Tata as chairman of the group in 1991. Leading Change details the group’s transformation under Ratan Tata’s leadership. Passing the Baton describes the succession process that led to the appointment of Cyrus Mistry as chairman of the group in late 2012.
The second case describes Cyrus Mistry’s leadership of the group until it ended abruptly with his sudden removal as chairman of Tata Sons on October 24, 2016, and the reinstatement of Ratan Tata as interim chairman.
Learning Objective (Maximum of 500 Characters):
This case can be used to provide an introduction to business groups and highlight their distinctive characteristics, which differentiate them from the conglomerate form of the organization. The case can be used to make a distinction between corporate strategy (what businesses to compete in pursuit of growth and the value-adding role of the corporate center) and group strategy (creating viable options for the distant future and the value-adding role of the group center). The case also demonstrates the strategic and organizational challenges of leading business groups.