Case Detail

Case Summary

ValuJet Airlines

Case Number: 5-104-002, Year Published: 2004

HBS Number: KEL043

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Authors: James Dana; David A Schmitt

Key Concepts

Strategic Positioning, Competitive Strategy, Cost Drivers, Benefit Drivers, Price Rivalry, Product Differentiation


The case looks at the strategic positioning decision of ValuJet Airlines when it entered the fortress hub of Delta Airlines. ValuJet’s strategy, and Delta’s response, is an example of what is sometimes called a judo strategy, so called because the entrant uses the incumbents strengths against them. ValuJet positions itself in such a way that it is very costly for Delta to retaliate.

Number of Pages: 11

Extended Case Information

Teaching Areas: Economics, Strategy

Geographic: Atlanta / US

Industry: Airline

Organization Name: ValuJet

Organization Department: Corporate Strategy

Organization Size: Small

Decision Maker Position: President & COO

Decision Maker Gender: Male

Year of Case: 1995