Xiaomi Inc. in 2017

By Gang Zheng, Yanting Guo, Robert A. Burgelman, Ben El-Baz
2017 | Case No. SM312 | Length 30 pgs.
This case describes the renewed growth of Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi in 2017, after suffering bruising setbacks at the hands of local competitors during the past two years. In 2017Q2, the company rejoined the top five rankings of the global smartphone market share. It also matched Samsung’s market share in India market in 2017Q3. The case highlights the company’s strategic adaptation in the two-year recalibration, with regards to global expansion, R&D accumulation and online business model redefinition. By releasing its own in-house developed chip, the case shows how Xiaomi attempts to fortify its intellectual property position and increase freedom of action in anticipation of entering new geographies, product markets, or technology areas. Besides, the case also presents the company’s combination of the online and offline channels, by opening more than 200 Mi Home stores both in domestic and overseas. As Xiaomi embraced a new strategy to fuel growth, this case emphasizes Xiaomi’s ecosystem strategy that seeks and invests partners in different niche markets with sizable market and strong user demand. In the end, the case questions the sustainability of the strategy and the internal organizational challenges facing Xiaomi.

Learning Objective

The case is designed for courses focused on the strategic management and international business. Specifically, to help students understand the process of organizational change, it highlights Xiaomi’s efforts on going global, improving technology, and broadening distribution. It also introduces Xiaomi’s ecosystem strategy as a way to maintain the momentum and expand international markets. Students discuss the situation in the case to think about and develop the tactics they would use to cope with fierce competition in the global smartphone market.
This material is available for download by current Stanford GSB students, faculty, and staff, as well as Stanford GSB alumni. For inquires, contact the Case Writing Office. Download