Silvio Napoli at Schindler India
Aditi Sarma (3)
Aditya Hosangadi (6)
Mrunal Agashe (10)
Alugubelly Manasa (14)
Debesh Rath (46)
Schindler Group was founded in 1874 by Robert Schindler in Switzerland. It comprises two core areas of business: Elevators & Escalators. Alfred Schindler assumed the role of Chairman in 1995 and decided to take a six-month “sabbatical” to step back and review the long-term strategy of Schindler in the Far Eastern markets. He saw a huge growth potential in India second only to China. “India will be our Formula One racing track. In the auto industry, 90% of all innovations are developed for and tested on Formula One cars and then reproduced on a much larger scale and adapted for the mass market. We are testing things in India – in isolation and on a fast track – that probably could not be done anywhere else in the company. The expectation is what we prove can be adapted to the rest of the group.” It was decided to strengthen Schindler presence in India.
The case discusses how Schindler, a manufacturer of elevator and escalators, made its decision to establish a fully owned subsidiary in India under the leadership of Mr. Silvio Napoli, a young Harvard graduate. The case brings forth the hardships faced by Mr. Napoli in setting up operations in a country which was culturally almost a contrast to the home country Switzerland. Being an expatriate in India, Mr. Napoli had to first understand the cultural implications and also acquaint himself with the culture of the country. His problems arose due to India’s protectionist tariff policies and pricing and cost considerations. The difficulties accelerated when his staff doubted his ability to get things done his way. Napoli found himself hard pressed for time to come up with a cost effective solution to make and sell core, standardized...