Case Detail

Case Summary

Thomson Financial: Building a Customer-Centric Firm

Case Number: 5-405-753, Year Published: 2006

HBS Number: KEL237

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Key Concepts

Business strategy, organizational strategy, synchronicity, customer-centered, customer-centric, technology strategy, organizational change, organizational transformation, difficult market environments


In December 1999, Thomson Financial (TF) began a radical transformation from 41 divisions toward a more integrated firm, organized around customer-segments. This required active, coordinated involvement from business, organization and technology functions, as well as sustained investment and execution through the crises of the technology market crash and September 11, 2001. By 2005 TF had emerged as one of the top three financial information firms globally (with Bloomberg & Reuters). LEARNING OBJECTIV Understand: 1. Building the customer-centric firm; ‘Synchronizing’ marketing (branding and sales), organizational, and technological infrastructure to focus on customer segments rather than products. 2. Making transformative, long-term investments under difficult circumstances. 3. Coordinating business, organization and technology strategies throughout a long-term transformation process.

Number of Pages: 21

Extended Case Information

Teaching Areas: Management, Organizational Behavior, Strategy, Technology

Teaching Note Available: Yes

Geographic: New York and U.S.

Industry: Financial Services/Financial Information

Organization Name: Thomson Financial

Organization Department: Senior Divisional Management

Organization Size: Medium

Decision Maker Position: COO, CTO

Decision Maker Gender: Male

Year of Case: 2002