Business Case Studies, Innovation and New Product Development Case Study, Motorola: Fostering Innovation?

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Innovation and New Product Development Case Study

Case Title:

Motorola: Fostering Innovation?

Publication Year : 2006

Authors: Jayesh Patel, Joel Sarosh Thadamalla

Industry: Engineering, Electrical and Electronics


Case Code: IPD0066A

Teaching Note: Available

Structured Assignment: Not Available

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Motorola, Inc. US based Fortune 100 company, was known around the world for innovation and technological leadership in embedded systems, wireless and broadband communications and made paradigm shifting contributions in two-way radio, semiconductors, paging, space flight communications, cellular communications etc. with global presence on six continents and 69,000 employees over the world of which 25,000 were engineers and scientists with passionate commitment to R&D. It had 21,300 global patents in its name and reached sales of US $36.8 billion in 2006.

Motorola, a pioneer in wireless was criticized for not capitalizing aggressively on its innovations and failed to anticipate great demand of digital mobiles. Motorola started to rethink on its core competency, realized changing customer needs, reviewed its history of innovation and finally reinvented its focus on innovation led by vision of ‘Seamless mobility’, develop innovative culture through series of strategic moves like acquisitions, partnerships, spin-offs, increase R&D facilities, leadership change, differentiation in design etc.

The case discusses cost cutting strategy, adopting specific corporate structure by reorganization, impact of leadership change and organisation culture at Motorola. Would Motorola be able to sustain the vision of ‘Seamless Mobility’ to push Motorola forward in its innovation efforts? Can Motorola efficiently capitalize on its innovations track record?

Pedagogical Objectives:

  • To understand Motorola as a technology and innovation leader.
  • To understand the importance of customer-centric approach
  • To discuss the importance of Innovation as a competitive strategy.

Keywords : Motorola; innovation; seamless mobility; technological leadership; core competency; changing customer needs; reinventing vision; spin-offs; merger & acquisitions; strategic alliances; differentiation; Innovation Management Case Study; leadership change; reorganisation; culture of innovation; fostering innovation etc


  • Introduction
  • About Motorola
    • History
    • Divisions

  • Innovation at Motorola
  • The downfall
  • Motorola: Ways to Nurturing Innovation
  • The Road Ahead

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