Browsing by Author "Fourie, L. C. H."
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- ItemEffective information access and automated traceability in fruit export chains in South Africa(AOSIS OpenJournals, 2006-12) Olivier, R.; Fourie, L. C. H.; Evans, A.The South African (SA) export fruit industry is vital to the SA economy, contributing about 20% (or 4 million tons) to agricultural production. As a one billion US dollar export industry in 2002, the country exports about 42% of its fresh fruit production (Shepherd 2003:2), contributing 75% of all farm income for fruit (Kriel 2002:4). The industry is well positioned with regard to its southern hemisphere competitors (Argentina, Australia, Chile and New Zealand) in terms of average growth in export volumes. However, the market requirements are constantly changing and competition is fierce due to the general oversupply of fruit in major markets. The limitations of the regulated environment eventually led to deregulation in August 1997 and to the phasing out of the statutory bodies. The new deregulated market structure radically changed the competitive profile of the industry by lifting the artificial barriers that existed for fruit exports. However, there was still a major barrier to performance – having the knowledge and ability to deal with export processes (S. Rigotti, personal communication, 13 June 2003 – Manager Information Systems, Capespan, P.O. Box 505, Bellville, South Africa, 7535). Exporters experienced a combination of problems. Few had proper systems, which meant that access to critical information was severely hampered. It was, for instance, difficult to record and verify the cost, quite often resulting in serious losses. Producer payments were inaccurate and late most of the time; sometimes payments only occurred during the harvesting of the next season. Data integrity on the supply chain was suspect, because of fragmented information channels and duplicated capturing at various points in the chain. The internal challenges were compounded by a difficult time in the markets. Strong competition, globalization and the effects of world-wide overproduction, caused prices to drop dramatically. Consequently many farmers and exporters incurred enormous debts and went bankrupt (Van der Ham, Becker and Guis 2002a; 2002b). In 2000, the third year after deregulation, the fruit export industry as a whole lost an estimated one billion rand in export earnings and declared itself in crisis (Mather 2003). SA's international image slipped because of all the negative consequences of deregulation (Symington 2003:5).
- ItemAn investigation into the uniformity and non-uniformity of online/offline retail brand building in South Africa(AOSIS, 2003) Kruger, H.; Fourie, L. C. H.Brand equity or -value is the result of the design and implementation of brand building, – measurement and – management programs. Brand building focuses on three interdependent tiers: selecting brand elements, choosing certain marketing activities and programs, and linking the brand to secondary brand associations. A brand holder’s first instinct may be, when it decides to evolve to the Internet, to maintain the status quo of its offline brand equity or value, by building a uniform online/offline brand. However, from the literature it is evident that authors are not united in their support of building uniform online/offline brands. Although building a uniform online/offline brand present certain tangible advantages, uniformity or non-uniformity proves not to be a binary decision, but dependant on the strategic imperative of the three tiered online/offline brand building initiative. To research three tiered online/offline brand building from a South African perspective, the uniformity and non-uniformity of brand name selection within the South African online/offline retail environment is firstly investigated. The advantages of building uniform online/offline brands are secondly elucidated as presented by the marketing programs – and activities of selected South African retail brands. Secondary brand associations, as part of the three tiered brand building phase or as separate strategic imperative, and the role it plays in non-uniform online/offline brand building, is thirdly examined. Findings are summarised, conclusions are drawn that elucidate the uniform and non-uniform brand building strategies of South African online/offline retailers and recommendations are made for future research.
- ItemThe management of information security : a South African case study(AOSIS, 2003) Fourie, L. C. H.The growing misuse of information technology and the increased dependence on computer technology and systems heightened the requirements for information security. Unfortunately there often is a feeling of apathy towards information security by management, which leads to an ad hoc approach to information security and resultant information and financial losses. The main objective of the research thus was to determine the current state of information security at a large manufacturing company in South Africa. The methodology entailed a field study of which three sets of structured questionnaires on information security were an important component. Based on a literature study concerning the ideal information security and control situation and the results of the three sets of questionnaires it was possible to determine the gap, problem areas and issues of information security and control at the manufacturing company. The research clearly indicated that numerous areas for improvement exist and therefore proposes a framework for the management of information security. Although a completely secure information system may not be attainable, the valuable information asset can to a large extent be protected through proper management.
- ItemStrategy and business models - strange bedfellows? A case for convergence and its evolution into strategic architecture(AOSIS, 2004) Mansfield, G. M.; Fourie, L. C. H.Strategy aims for sustainable competitive advantage; business models are said to be the sine qua non of value creation. Firms in the networked economy may ask which approach is the more relevant and whether either, or both, are sufficient for success - and then misinterpret the linkage between them. Internet-based businesses are faced with rapid change in an environment characterised by connectedness and choice in which dynamism, innovation and customer-centricity appear to be the winning ingredients for success. In the networked economy the internet with its open standards has created commercial arrangements which manifest a disdain for traditional boundaries and demand new patterns of management behaviour for effective performance. The classic approach to strategy formulation with its perceived indifference, for example, towards network formation, confusion around generic strategy deployment, lack of dynamism and its vacuous treatment of customer-centricity have led electronic business practitioners to the flawed conclusion that a business model is the only compelling strategic behaviour which predicates success. This conceptual paper builds a theoretical base which traces the roots of strategy and business models, reviews the context of each, postulates a relationship between these two fundamental approaches and offers some guidelines on the missing ingredients.