Mimu
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Hello everyone

So as the exam draws near I went ahead and ran a few web searches on Centre parcs to see how it's updating (as well as going through the tutor2u analysis) and thought it's best to create a thread to discuss (because business is simply a lot easier when you have people to talk to and share ideas and views with)

Perhaps the major thing that has developed with the UK Centre parcs (since the focus in the pre release material seemed to be on the UK one rather than the Europe one) is the current negotiations over the possible acquisition by Brookfield Property Partners, now the deal is still in the talks but it's quite interesting is it not? because the Centre parcs UK had already been run separately to the Euro division the separate sale of UK, this brings up issues of management, will a clash of company cultures occur? or could be argued that the fact that the acquisition has been made by a property partners means that Centre parcs UK will have more reign on how it manages itself? could this encourage a stronger company culture? or will the new owner bring about enough change do discourage and demotivate staff? how will this affect the run of business in the long term? Another point to take on is investment appraisal, is this a profitable decision by Brookfield? what about the enormous debt Centre parcs already posses?

Going through the annual review is also beneficial, their income statement shows increased revenue and gross profit, their costs of sales decreased (are they becoming more efficient?), brand awareness dropped from 99% to 98% (is the market moving into a less brand driven customers? is more money needed to be invested into marketing? does this take away from Centre parcs competitive advantage? does the company need to undertake a review of it's marketing mix?), staff turnover increased from 23% to 25% (is this simply due to the fact that the staff hired were generally young in age and had decided to shift their career prospectives? is this not of concern considering the average turnover in service sector and specially leisure tends to be high? or is the built in academy encouraging more staff to pursue careers elsewhere? could this be argued to increase efficiency since remaining staff are there by will and those that left are considered to have been demotivated staff? how does this translate with their costs? recruitment, training etc.) the average daily rate has seen an increase as well (the average customer now spends more but does this translate into profit or is this rise synonymous with a rise in expenses?), booking through their online facilities has increased to account for 81% of total booking (is e-commerce a better way to reach customers? is the current marketing mix sufficient to boost this figure up? maybe reduces costs for other channels of marketing eg. TV adds and other)

Their CSR is still high and evident, efforts to reduce emission and reduce waste are still ongoing (even though the investment in the energy saving schemes dropped from 300 000 to 200 000) investment in new technology shows commitment (infra red heating)

Also the announcement of the new location of the village to be in Ireland (perhaps due to a feeling that the domestic market of UK has reached saturation? or perhaps spreading risk? increasing profits by increasing revenue?) to be completed est. 2019, such a huge investment despite the company still being in debts (that won't be repaid for 2017, 2018, 2024 respectively) but is a good example of a growth strategy, a relatively new market(?) with an existing product (diversification or is this market development?) thoughts about why this strategy was chosen? (perhaps it's the least risky growth strategy? if so why?). Does this new corporate strategy signals that Centre parcs is slowly internally growing into perhaps becoming an international brand in the short getaway vacations market?

Most of their website and there for marketing mix targets families (activities as well as awards aimed at children) and the high end customers (those who want a premium experience) two groups with possibly clashing elasticity of demand, does a growth strategy in which they target a new demographic seem like a better choice to increase their market share (market penetration)?

feel free to post more thoughts that I haven't mentioned here as well as discussing points I've gathered, any input from more experienced individuals is much valued. Fellow students also feel free to speculate or ask questions, let's keep the conversation going
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Gharper1997
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What questions do you think will come up, with regards to the Center Parcs case study?
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Tristan03
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(Original post by Gharper1997)
What questions do you think will come up, with regards to the Center Parcs case study?
Im thinking CSR and corporate culture for the possible essay questions
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sophhhhhs
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There has to be a question about CSR, given the amount it was discussed in the case study. Maybe CPA? Seems likely as Centre Parcs has just opened a new village and is now planning another?
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Cauley1997
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(Original post by SimranDahiya)
Hey is centre parcs going to be the case study of this upcoming bs unit4 a2 exam?
for unit 4 edexcel its the case study yeah.
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emma.moon
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(Original post by Mimu)
Hello everyone

So as the exam draws near I went ahead and ran a few web searches on Centre parcs to see how it's updating (as well as going through the tutor2u analysis) and thought it's best to create a thread to discuss (because business is simply a lot easier when you have people to talk to and share ideas and views with)

Perhaps the major thing that has developed with the UK Centre parcs (since the focus in the pre release material seemed to be on the UK one rather than the Europe one) is the current negotiations over the possible acquisition by Brookfield Property Partners, now the deal is still in the talks but it's quite interesting is it not? because the Centre parcs UK had already been run separately to the Euro division the separate sale of UK, this brings up issues of management, will a clash of company cultures occur? or could be argued that the fact that the acquisition has been made by a property partners means that Centre parcs UK will have more reign on how it manages itself? could this encourage a stronger company culture? or will the new owner bring about enough change do discourage and demotivate staff? how will this affect the run of business in the long term? Another point to take on is investment appraisal, is this a profitable decision by Brookfield? what about the enormous debt Centre parcs already posses?

Going through the annual review is also beneficial, their income statement shows increased revenue and gross profit, their costs of sales decreased (are they becoming more efficient?), brand awareness dropped from 99% to 98% (is the market moving into a less brand driven customers? is more money needed to be invested into marketing? does this take away from Centre parcs competitive advantage? does the company need to undertake a review of it's marketing mix?), staff turnover increased from 23% to 25% (is this simply due to the fact that the staff hired were generally young in age and had decided to shift their career prospectives? is this not of concern considering the average turnover in service sector and specially leisure tends to be high? or is the built in academy encouraging more staff to pursue careers elsewhere? could this be argued to increase efficiency since remaining staff are there by will and those that left are considered to have been demotivated staff? how does this translate with their costs? recruitment, training etc.) the average daily rate has seen an increase as well (the average customer now spends more but does this translate into profit or is this rise synonymous with a rise in expenses?), booking through their online facilities has increased to account for 81% of total booking (is e-commerce a better way to reach customers? is the current marketing mix sufficient to boost this figure up? maybe reduces costs for other channels of marketing eg. TV adds and other)

Their CSR is still high and evident, efforts to reduce emission and reduce waste are still ongoing (even though the investment in the energy saving schemes dropped from 300 000 to 200 000) investment in new technology shows commitment (infra red heating)

Also the announcement of the new location of the village to be in Ireland (perhaps due to a feeling that the domestic market of UK has reached saturation? or perhaps spreading risk? increasing profits by increasing revenue?) to be completed est. 2019, such a huge investment despite the company still being in debts (that won't be repaid for 2017, 2018, 2024 respectively) but is a good example of a growth strategy, a relatively new market(?) with an existing product (diversification or is this market development?) thoughts about why this strategy was chosen? (perhaps it's the least risky growth strategy? if so why?). Does this new corporate strategy signals that Centre parcs is slowly internally growing into perhaps becoming an international brand in the short getaway vacations market?

Most of their website and there for marketing mix targets families (activities as well as awards aimed at children) and the high end customers (those who want a premium experience) two groups with possibly clashing elasticity of demand, does a growth strategy in which they target a new demographic seem like a better choice to increase their market share (market penetration)?

feel free to post more thoughts that I haven't mentioned here as well as discussing points I've gathered, any input from more experienced individuals is much valued. Fellow students also feel free to speculate or ask questions, let's keep the conversation going
this has helped a lot to get a better picture of the whole thing, yes lets keep the conversation going.
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Mimu
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(Original post by SimranDahiya)
is this for ial too? or just the uk?
I don't think the IAL spec has a pre released material so I do not think this applies to the IAL exams as well but if your exam centre hasn't provided you with the printed Centre parcs case study then you shouldn't expect it to be included in the exam
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sophhhhhs
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How could you define Centre Parcs culture?
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liamsykes
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can anyone give me an example of a critical path analysis that may come up on the exam?
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sophhhhhs
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(Original post by liamsykes)
can anyone give me an example of a critical path analysis that may come up on the exam?
Its really unlikely to be that we will have to draw one, in all the other papers it has simply been interpreting a CP and writing about the benefits and disadvantages of using one. Look at june 2011.

Example question would be:
CRITICAL PATH MADE BY EDEXCEL
Here is a critical path showing the basic schedule in building Wolburn Parc. Assess the usefulness of this information to Centre Parcs when planning and building a new parc.
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liamsykes
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(Original post by sophhhhhs)
Its really unlikely to be that we will have to draw one, in all the other papers it has simply been interpreting a CP and writing about the benefits and disadvantages of using one. Look at june 2011.

Example question would be:
CRITICAL PATH MADE BY EDEXCEL
Here is a critical path showing the basic schedule in building Wolburn Parc. Assess the usefulness of this information to Centre Parcs when planning and building a new parc.

cheers, do you have any predictions or ideas of what the other essay may be on?

CSR? Contingency Planning? Decision Trees?
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sophhhhhs
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(Original post by liamsykes)
cheers, do you have any predictions or ideas of what the other essay may be on?

CSR? Contingency Planning? Decision Trees?
There has got to be something on CSR, I would be shocked if there wasnt at least a 6 marker. In honesty, I think there could be question on anything in the unit, nearly all of it applies, apart from elements of contribution and special order (though you can make this fit). Go through the case study and pick out the topic each bit of evidence could apply to, questions will normally reflect these topics as we obviously have the application for each.
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liamsykes
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(Original post by sophhhhhs)
There has got to be something on CSR, I would be shocked if there wasnt at least a 6 marker. In honesty, I think there could be question on anything in the unit, nearly all of it applies, apart from elements of contribution and special order (though you can make this fit). Go through the case study and pick out the topic each bit of evidence could apply to, questions will normally reflect these topics as we obviously have the application for each.
how many points would you advise for a 20 and 30 marker?
I was thinking for 30 marks around 5/6 points explained/evaluated with a conclusion
and for a 20 marker 4/5 points explained with a conclusion?
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Lemmetakeaselfie
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how did everyone do? I thought the 30 marker on decision trees was just awful
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leemurphy1
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(Original post by Lemmetakeaselfie)
how did everyone do? I thought the 30 marker on decision trees was just awful
I agree, that would have been more suitable for an 8 or 10 marker...
Too little to talk about, however, despite that I think I did well!

How did everyone else do??
What grade are you hoping for overall??
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samueljames11
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I thought the unit 4 was far too easy, nothing challenging came up in terms of strategic matrix's. Just means the grade boundaries are going to be really high. Although it was difficult to stretch decision trees to 30marks.
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Giuly1234567
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The decision tree question was way too high and little adv and drawbacks to talk about..
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