The Dutch Flower Cluster case

Prof. EenennaamTwenty enthusiastic MBA students were excited about the Harvard style case discussion of the Dutch Flower Cluster by visiting Prof. Fred van Eenennaam of The Decision Institute and Prof. Ingo Böbel of the International University of Monaco. « The IUM MBA class did an excellent job on discussing the dutch flower cluster case. From Russia to Japan. From China to Germany. From the UK to Peru we all shared our insights and ideas for the future strategy of the ancestors of the tulip mania. An international MBA class as an international MBA class should be but is not often enough found these days » quoted Prof. Van Eenennaam.

This case study has been written by Michael E. Porter, Jorge Ramirez-Vallejo and Fred Van Eenennaam in 2011.

Resume: « The world export market for flowers and flower-related products was almost $30 billion in 2009, having grown more than five-fold since 1998. The Netherlands had been the dominant player in the global flower trade since pioneering the industry in the seventeenth century. By 1998, Holland had the largest and most sophisticated flower cluster in the world in terms of technology and international penetration.

Since 2003, competition had been increasing from developing countries in Latin America, Africa, and Asia while environmental concerns related to flower cultivation were growing. In 2010, industry leaders sought to chart a strategy to allow The Netherlands to sustain its position in the twenty-first century. »

The Dutch Flower Cluster Case receives a lot of attention and has been taught in numerous universities all over the world in 2013, as stated by Microeconomics of Competitiveness (MoC) affiliates. Furthermore, the case is one of the top ten cases taught by Prof. Michael Porter. His MoC network of around 100 universities and around 200 academics including highly renowned universities like Harvard Business School was started from HBS’s Institute for Strategy & Competitiveness. The MoC network disseminates the theories on the competitive advantage of clusters and is still expanding. The Decision Institute was one of the founding members of the European Chapter of MoC in August 2011, to which the International University of Monaco is an affiliate as well.

The Dutch Flower Cluster case study


Prof dr Fred van Eenennaam has a broad experience as a strategy consultant and investor/board member across different industry sectors in Europe and USA. Building and delivering in-company strategic change, transformation, leadership development programs and high-end executive and MBA programs is one of his passions. He works in close cooperation with renowned faculty of IESE Barcelona, Harvard Business School, The Decision Institute, Erasmus University, George Washington University and the network he co-chairs based on Prof Porters Competitiveness Network of 100 universities around the world.
Fred is fluent in different languages. He is educated as economist, has received his doctorate in strategy at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam and works for 50% percent of his time as Associate and Full Strategy Professor at different Dutch (until 2009 Nyenrode Business Universiteit, currently Erasmus University) and International Universities (currently George Washington University, DC; St Gallen University a.o.)
As a strategy consultant his focus is on creating the strategic dialogue and setting the strategic agenda for boards and supervisory boards of leading and challenger companies during moments of truth. The re-buy rate of national and international clients of The Decision Group was 84% percent in 2012. As the director of the Decision Group BV, which aims at customer and issue based strategy consulting services, Fred has worked with partners nationally and internationally. At the Decision Group, the focus lies on rational decision making in an irrational world, dealing with uncertainties and the convergence and fragmentation of industries, technologies and business models. The core is helping clients take better decisions by supporting the strategic dialogue with state of the art strategic tools, modeling/gaming and business analyses and creating de-biased dialogue processes. Culture is Pragademic, client oriented, entrepreneurial, learning by doing, using our European, USA, Academic and business & investors networks. The application of cutting edge academic strategy knowledge, tools, methods and applications in the consulting projects is a key focus of The Decision Group BV. The clients are mainly challengers or market leaders. 50% of the clients have come from the Life Sciences and Health sectors traditionally.
The Decision Institute which focuses on delivering in-company strategic change, transformation, and leadership development programs internationally had a 73% re-buy rate in 2011. The core ingredients for setting and implementing a successful strategic agenda are the pragacademic combination of 1) the application of cutting edge strategic tools, models and state of the art analyses, 2) the facilitation/assisting boardroom decision making and 3) monitoring and helping implement strategic alignment through in-company programs with people.
Fred was the promoter for the honorary doctorates of dr Morris Tabaksblat (2008) and Professor dr Michael Porter (2009). Fred is also the co-founder of the Value Based Health Delivery Center Europe.
Professor Porter has bestowed the honors of Fred becoming a member of the Harvard Hall of Fame in 2012.