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About Caribbean Chemicals

Question:

Discuss about the Strategic Planning for Caribbean Chemicals Guyana Limited.

Caribbean Chemicals is a top company in the Republic of Trinidad Tobago. The Republic is one of the wealthiest nations in the world, and therefore, it is a good place to seek employment. The island, situated off the coast of Venezuela in the Caribbean Sea, is also one of the high salary nations in the world. Part of the success of this country is attributed to the work of Caribbean Chemicals and its success.

Caribbean Chemicals has been in operation since December 1966.  The firm started off by serving the needs of agricultural producers.  From a small local company with a few employees, Caribbean Chemicals has risen to become a major player in the international market and employer of more than 200 people. The company makes approximately $100 million annually in sales.  Caribbean Chemical is known across the world for producing quality products such as fertilizers, seeds, herbicides, and insecticides.

The agricultural sector is a critical segment of the economy of many countries.  However, it might face a lot of challenges to feed the 9.6 billion people that researchers at Food and Agriculture Organization of the United States predict will inhabit the earth by 2050 (Martinez, 2016). Lack of arable land and the increasing need for fresh water might stand in the way of most of these firms is achieving their objectives, according to the UN. The rapid rise is labor cost, and the prices of oil have to see the contribution of the agricultural sector drop from two percent of the Trinidad and Tobago’s GDP in 1997 to 0.4 in 2009. Caribbean Chemicals is alive to these challenges and has put strategies in place to ensure the company achieves its objectives and meets the needs of its customers (Khadan, 2016).

Caribbean Chemicals’ success has been attributed in part to the effective implementation of some of its strategic objectives.  These objectives are drawn from the company’s mission, and vision statements as the company do not explicitly indicate them.  According to information from the company’s official website,   its mission is to train its staff to be able to profitably and safely serve its local and regional customers, provide credible advice to the authorities and offer environmentally, technologically advanced inputs in both the industrial and agricultural markets.           Caribbean Chemicals’ vision is to utilize its knowledge and experience to distribute technologically advanced chemical inputs to cater for the interest of all their stakeholders. The company also envisions to providing these services to its customers, making strategic alliances and transforming the chemical supply industry in the entire region (Rocketguyana, n.d.).  While Caribbean Chemicals does not formally state its strategic objectives on its official website, its mission and vision clearly put across at least two main objectives (Thompson et al., 2016).

Offering environmentally, technologically advanced inputs is one on the company’s major strategic objectives.  This objective will enable Caribbean Chemicals to remain at the forefront of agricultural development, which it provides as one of its major standards. As already indicated, lack of fertile land, adequate water as well as seasonal events is affecting the agricultural department negatively.  When there is no land to prepare and no viable seeds to plant, the company’s efforts to supply fertilizers and other farm products become futile.  For this reason, the only sensible way to increase the quality of agricultural production is to use advanced, sensible technology to make farms productive.

History of Caribbean Chemicals

The company should also engage in more research and development activities.  Caribbean Chemicals can collect vast amounts of data from crops yield, weather data, machinery, animal health, and fertilizer applications. The company also needs to continue cooperating with the government to ensure the agricultural sector remains profitable in the long run (Thompson et al., 2016).

Caribbean Chemicals have registered region –wide success because of the impact of the founder’s strategic vision.  According to Victor Pires, the managing director, his father’s principled and professional approach to providing service to this sector has put them above the competition. Pires’s father instilled senses of service delivery in the company.  The company does not sell anything chemical that it has not tested as they are aware that a business is offering chemical to this sector, they take care to ensure lives and reputation are not ruined.  Working towards providing quality and ensuring safety has helped the company to be popular with the Guyanese farming community since its inception (Rocketguyana,  n.d.).

Caribbean Chemicals has been using several strategies depending on the situation. Some of these strategies are implemented in non-conventional ways to achieve great results.  That style has in a significant way helped in the realization of the company’s strategic objectives (Ungson & Wong, 2008).

While Caribbean Chemicals have become the industry leader in the region, it still needs to grow and enter into new markets. For this reason, it requires having a strategy that ensures growth.  The company is introducing new chemical inputs (Winning Checklist, 2014).  Recently, it launched a new product known as pHortify that supplies plants with an amount of phosphorus that is necessary for optimum yields. For a long time, the company was producing base phosphate fertilizers, but it emerged that these fertilizers often do not supply crops with the right amount of nutrients.   According to the company, they have noted that soil type, soil PH, soil moisture often interrupt the supply of base phosphatic fertilizers to plants particularly at some critical moments in the development phase.

The company has resolved this problem by producing Omex pHortify, which consists of two highly available phosphorus sources (Rocketguyana,  n.d.).  Phosphate, Phosphate Chelated manganese, and zinc are available in this chemical, and they work together to ensure an increase in natural resistance to infection from some fungal as well. Omex pHortify has several other benefits.  Other than improving the plant nutrient health and disease resistance, it improves rooting action and fruit set.  In addition, this fertilizer increases yield, solids contents and foliar uptake of cations.

The discovery of new products has been made possible by the company’s willingness to embrace advanced technology.  Through these efforts, it has remained completive in Trinidad Tobago and the entire region.  Caribbean’s growth strategy is aligned with most of its strategic objectives.  The strategy according to Hitt (2017) allows the company to offer environmentally, technologically sensible chemical inputs. As a result of this, its customers can achieve their production targets, and this consequently closes the door for its competitors.  This growth strategy is combined with product differentiation strategy, making it very effective in helping the company to build brand loyalty.  With brand loyalty, Caribbean Chemicals can get adequate resources for achieving all its strategic objectives, including the second one, which is offering quality services in a professional manner (Thompson et al., 2016).

Challenges in the Agricultural Sector

Caribbean Chemicals’ other strategy is the acquisition.  The company wants to gain a competitive advantage by using its extra capital to purchase other companies.  According to Guardian, Caribbean Chemicals acquired the Agriculture Chemical Plant, a subsidiary of Gruppo Campari of Italy in late 2014. This acquisition means that the company has increased its asset base and market base (Caribbean Chemicals, n.d.). It has also strengthened its brand and increased the company’s ability to do proper research and provide quality agricultural products (Thompson et al., 2016; Evolution of Strategic Planning, 2014).

Caribbean Chemicals understands that an organizational structure determines its performance.  These structures indicate how the leadership is disseminated throughout the organization.  Most organizations adopt either flat structures or hierarchical structures depending on their needs. The Caribbean chose the divisional structure.  As a result of this, the company has structured its leadership team based on the agricultural products, their subsidiaries, and projects. With the hundreds of products, this company has structured itself in a manner that ensures it has several business units and their own leaders.   A board of directors consisting of six experts is in charge of the organization. The company also relies on nine of its staff to head various business units (Colquitt, 2009; Monahan, 2008).

This organizational structure is properly aligned with the organization’s strategies. The acquisition of the Agriculture Chemical Plant in 2014, for example, was done by AG Chem Plan Limited, which is just one of the many subsidiaries of Caribbean Chemicals. The manager of this subsidiary has the full authority to enter into such deals on behalf of the entire team, in consultation with the board of directors.  The divisional structure allows faster decision making as many leaders have the full responsibility to manage their units.  This organization’s strategy, therefore, is also properly aligned with the growth strategy (Colquitt, 2009; Thompson et al., 2016).

As always corporate culture is implied rather than expressly define.  In addition, it develops organically over a period from the traits of people who work in the company. Caribbean’s corporate culture is also implied (Flamholtz & Randle, 2011).

Overall, it is possible to conclude that the company has a strong corporate culture going by their vision, values, practices, employees, and narratives (Yomere, 2010). Caribbean’s vision and strategic objectives as has been demonstrated above are compelling.  They reveal that the organization is dedicated to providing environmentally, technologically sensible chemical inputs to all its customers. The company values honesty and respect and intends to give value to their customers.

Based on this, it has remained popular in the country and the region for the last 50 years. Its practices reinforce this fact. The Caribbean is working closely with the government to protect the interest of farmers. The founder of Caribbean Chemicals was a professional whose interest was to find a solution for the needs of farmers. That spirit of dedication to service has remained alive in the company to date (Catlin-Legutko & Klingler, 2012).

The power of also narrative influences its culture. The unique history of Caribbean is a core element of the creation of its culture. Most employees in the company want to be selfless as its founder was. Since the strategic objectives of these companies agree with its strategy, it is apparent that its corporate culture is also aligned with strategy.  The objectives have been driven by both the mission and the vision of the company, and these are the core elements that influence the creation of corporate culture (Skipwith, 2005; Catlin-Legutko & Klingler, 2012).

Strategic Objectives of Caribbean Chemicals

With the current failure of crops, Caribbean needs to return to the drawing board and look for better solutions. Farmers are now more concerned about the changing weather patterns than any other factor. Perhaps, the company should invest more in discovering seeds that can do well in all weather situations.  While the pesticides and fertilizers have helped many farmers, better seed can make the greatest revolution in the sector. As Prasad and Bahuguna (2014), the company should advance its technology so be able to solve the current problems.

In addition, the company should focus beyond the Caribbean region.  The whole world requires similar solutions. By partnering with organizations in all parts of the world, it will mostly likely be of help to them and learn better ways of dealing with problems that affect farmers across the world from these organizations as well.

Conclusion

Since Caribbean Chemicals’ inception in 1966, it has undertaken several research and development activities and discovered many better ways of dealing with problems in the agricultural sector, including the discovery and manufacture of Omex pHortify.  However, more should be done to find a solution for the 9.6 billion people that will inhabit the earth by 2050.       Lack of arable land and changing weather patterns are some of the factors that still stand in the way of farmers across the world. In Trinidad and Tobago, these factors led to the drop of the contribution to the country’s GDP from two percent in 1997 to 0.4 percent in 2009.  While the strategic objectives of Caribbean Chemicals reveal, that is alive to these challenges and is strategizing to deal with them. The company, in collaboration with different organizations, need to do further research on better ways of overcoming the negative effect of changing weather patterns on crop production.

References

Caribbean Chemicals buys Jamaica company. (n.d.). Retrieved May 10, 2017, from https://www.guardian.co.tt/business/2014-12-25/caribbean-chemicals-buys-jamaica-company

Catlin-Legutko, C., & Klingler, S. (2012). Organizational Management. Lanham, MD: AltaMira Press.

Colquitt, J., Lepine, J. A., & Wesson, M. J. (2009). Organizational behavior: improving performance and commitment in the workplace. Boston: McGraw-Hill/Irwin.

Evolution of Strategic Planning and Today's Role: Chief Strategy Officer. (2014). Business Strategy, 5-32. doi:10.1002/9781118896006.ch1

Flamholtz, E., & Randle, Y. (2011). Corporate culture: the ultimate strategic asset. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press.

Hitt, M. A., Ireland, R. D., & Hoskisson, R. E. (2017). Strategic management: competitiveness & globalization: concepts and cases. Boston, MA: Cengage Learning.

Khadan, J. (2016). An Econometric Analysis of Energy Revenue and Government Expenditure Shocks on Economic Growth in Trinidad and Tobago. doi:10.18235/0000565

Martinez, S. (2016). Policies Supporting Local Food in the United States. Agriculture, 6(3), 43. doi:10.3390/agriculture6030043

Monahan, G. (2008). Enterprise risk  management a methodology for achieving strategic objectives. Hoboken (N.J.): John Wiley & Sons.

Prasad, B., & Bahuguna, A. (2014). Agricultural technology: a new paradigms. New Delhi: Biotech Books.

Rocketguyana, L. D. (n.d.). Retrieved May 10, 2017, from https://caribbeanchemicalsgy.com/missionandvision.html

Skipwith, S. (2005). Corporate Culture: a history of corporate art collecting ;   The Fleming Collection, 21 June - 3 September 2005. London: Fleming-Wyfold Art Foundation.

Thompson, A. A., Peteraf, M. A., Gamble, E., & Strickland, A. (2016). Crafting and executing strategy the quest for competitive advantage conceptss and cases. McGraw HIll.

Ungson, G. R., & Wong, Y. (2008). Global strategic management. Armonk, NY: M.E. Sharpe.

Winning Checklist: How to Succeed in Business Strategy. (2014). Business Strategy, 157-166. doi:10.1002/9781118896006.ch9

Yomere, G. (2010). Corporate culture: a bridge or barrier to organisational performance. Abraka, Nigeria: Delta State University.

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