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Question 1
Using concepts from the chapter in Barney & Hesterly on “Evaluating a Firm’s Internal Capabilities”:
Q1A. Explain why SecDB has been a source of competitive advantage for Goldman Sachs. Particularly explain why it was hard for rivals to replicate SecDB.
Q1B. Explain why SecDB is no longer as strong of a source of competitive advantage for Goldman Sachs. Pay particular attention to changes in the competitive environment.
Question 2 
Answer the following questions using concepts from the chapters in Barney & Hesterly on “Cost Leadership” and “Product Differentiation”.
Q2A. What position in the market has Ryanair primarily occupied? In other words, what is Ryanair’s generic strategy? (Be sure to discuss the type of advantage it is seeking and its competitive scope.)
Q2B. Do the recent actions taken by Ryanair represent a change in strategy or simply an evolution of its initial strategy in the face of competitive conditions? In other words, has Ryanair switched from one quadrant of Porter’s Generic Strategies to another or has it simply moved within the quadrant it initially occupied?
(Feel free to draw on the V-P-C framework from my video “Introduction to Competitive Advantage” to help explain your answer.)
VPC framework
Value – Price – Cost  Customer (Buyer) Value  A function of a product’s performance  Determined by the buyer  Buyer’s “willingness to pay”  The highest price a customer would be willing to pay for a product in the absence of a competing product and in the context of other purchasing opportunities
 Product Cost  Incurred by firm making the product  The marginal cost to produce a unit of the product (or service) with a particular level of value
 Market Price  What firm charges for the product and the customer pays

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