Kronos Inporporated A-B

Babson Professor Ed Marram, Case Director

Sam Perkins, Case Writer

Arthur M. Blank Center for Entrepreneurship

© Babson College, 1998.

Abstract

A company providing software for corporate intranets to facilitate the collection and management of time and labor-related data must contend with customer demands for broader integrated suites of software products. By the mid 1990's the company had a 60-70% market share but as the software industry matures and customers become more sophisticated in choosing their software products, Kronos, which has been providing a superior product, must now consider partnering rather than continuing their go-it alone strategy. The founder struggles with this changing landscape initially by revamping the company's upper management producing limited success. Options considered besides the status quo include: expansion, OEM sales to large vendors of software to include in their suites or strategic alliances with selected vendors. Eventually, the company establishes alliances with four vendors with great success.

Location of the company: Chelmsford, Massachusetts

Years spanned by the case: 1977 - 1998

Industry segment: Software

Stage of the company: Start-up and growth

Age of the entrepreneur(s): Mid-30's

Key Words: Entrepreneurship, computer software, enterprise resource planning (erp), enterprise application software, partnering

DVD

A 40-minute DVD is available for this case. One of the principals from the case answers questions in a Babson class. Please place video orders through the Arthur M. Blank Center for Entrepreneurship.

Teaching Notes

An eight page case teaching package, written by Ed Marram, is available for this case. The teaching package includes strategies for case presentation, key concepts, solutions to the assignment questions in the case, and suggestions for the most effective ways to work this case into a course.