UBS SWOT Analysis / Matrix

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SWOT analysis is a vital strategic planning tool that can be used by UBS managers to do a situational analysis of the organization . It is an important technique to map out the present Strengths (S), Weakness (W), Opportunities (O) & Threats (T) UBS is facing in its current business environment.

The UBS is one of the leading firms in its industry. UBS maintains its prominent position in market by carefully analyzing and reviewing the SWOT analysis.  SWOT analysis a highly interactive process and requires effective coordination among various departments within the company such as – marketing, finance, operations, management information systems and strategic planning.

The SWOT Analysis framework enables an organization to identify the internal strategic factors such as -strengths and weaknesses, & external strategic factors such as - opportunities and threats. It leads to a 2X2 matrix – also known as SWOT Matrix.

The Strengths-Weaknesses-Opportunities-Threats (SWOT) Analysis / Matrix enables the managers of the UBS to develop four types of strategies:

  • SO (strengths-opportunities) Strategies
  • WO (weaknesses-opportunities) Strategies
  • ST (strengths-threats) Strategies
  •  WT (weaknesses-threats) Strategies
UBS swot analysis / matrix

SWOT Matrix Strategies Objective

The core purpose of SWOT matrix is to identify the strategies that a company can utilize to exploit external opportunities, counter threats, and build on & protect UBS strengths, and eradicate its weaknesses.

Step by Step Guide to UBS SWOT Analysis

Strengths of UBS – Internal Strategic Factors


As one of the leading companies in its industry, UBS has numerous strengths that enable it to thrive in the market place. These strengths not only help it to protect the market share in existing markets but also help in penetrating new markets. Based on Fern Fort University extensive research – some of the strengths of UBS are –

  • Superb Performance in New Markets – UBS has built expertise at entering new markets and making success of them. The expansion has helped the organization to build new revenue stream and diversify the economic cycle risk in the markets it operates in.
  • Good Returns on Capital Expenditure – UBS is relatively successful at execution of new projects and generated good returns on capital expenditure by building new revenue streams.
  • Highly skilled workforce through successful training and learning programs. UBS is investing huge resources in training and development of its employees resulting in a workforce that is not only highly skilled but also motivated to achieve more.
  • Strong Free Cash Flow – UBS has strong free cash flows that provide resources in the hand of the company to expand into new projects.
  • Successful track record of developing new products – product innovation.
  • Strong Brand Portfolio – Over the years UBS has invested in building a strong brand portfolio. The SWOT analysis of UBS just underlines this fact. This brand portfolio can be extremely useful if the organization wants to expand into new product categories.
  • Successful track record of integrating complimentary firms through mergers & acquisition. It has successfully integrated number of technology companies in the past few years to streamline its operations and to build a reliable supply chain.
  • Strong dealer community – It has built a culture among distributor & dealers where the dealers not only promote company’s products but also invest in training the sales team to explain to the customer how he/she can extract the maximum benefits out of the products.


Weakness of UBS – Internal Strategic Factors


Weakness are the areas where UBS can improve upon. Strategy is about making choices and weakness are the areas where a company can improve using SWOT analysis and build on its competitive advantage and strategic positioning.

  • Not very good at product demand forecasting leading to higher rate of missed opportunities compare to its competitors. One of the reason why the days inventory is high compare to its competitors is that UBS is not very good at demand forecasting thus end up keeping higher inventory both in-house and in channel.
  • The marketing of the products left a lot to be desired. Even though the product is a success in terms of sale but its positioning and unique selling proposition is not clearly defined which can lead to the attacks in this segment from the competitors.
  • Financial planning is not done properly and efficiently. The current asset ratio and liquid asset ratios suggest that the company can use the cash more efficiently than what it is doing at present.
  • The company has not being able to tackle the challenges present by the new entrants in the segment and has lost small market share in the niche categories. UBS has to build internal feedback mechanism directly from sales team on ground to counter these challenges.
  • There are gaps in the product range sold by the company. This lack of choice can give a new competitor a foothold in the market.
  • Need more investment in new technologies. Given the scale of expansion and different geographies the company is planning to expand into, UBS needs to put more money in technology to integrate the processes across the board. Right now the investment in technologies is not at par with the vision of the company.
  • Days inventory is high compare to the competitors – making the company raise more capital to invest in the channel. This can impact the long term growth of UBS

Opportunities for UBS – External Strategic Factors

  • The market development will lead to dilution of competitor’s advantage and enable UBS to increase its competitiveness compare to the other competitors.
  • New trends in the consumer behavior can open up new market for the UBS . It provides a great opportunity for the organization to build new revenue streams and diversify into new product categories too.
  • New environmental policies – The new opportunities will create a level playing field for all the players in the industry. It represent a great opportunity for UBS to drive home its advantage in new technology and gain market share in the new product category.
  • The new technology provides an opportunity to UBS to practices differentiated pricing strategy in the new market. It will enable the firm to maintain its loyal customers with great service and lure new customers through other value oriented propositions.
  • Decreasing cost of transportation because of lower shipping prices can also bring down the cost of UBS’s products thus providing an opportunity to the company - either to boost its profitability or pass on the benefits to the customers to gain market share.
  • Stable free cash flow provides opportunities to invest in adjacent product segments. With more cash in bank the company can invest in new technologies as well as in new products segments. This should open a window of opportunity for UBS in other product categories.
  • The new taxation policy can significantly impact the way of doing business and can open new opportunity for established players such as UBS to increase its profitability.
  • New customers from online channel – Over the past few years the company has invested vast sum of money into the online platform. This investment has opened new sales channel for UBS. In the next few years the company can leverage this opportunity by knowing its customer better and serving their needs using big data analytics.

Threats UBS Facing - External Strategic Factors

  • Rising pay level especially movements such as $15 an hour and increasing prices in the China can lead to serious pressure on profitability of UBS
  • Liability laws in different countries are different and UBS may be exposed to various liability claims given change in policies in those markets.
  • The demand of the highly profitable products is seasonal in nature and any unlikely event during the peak season may impact the profitability of the company in short to medium term.
  • Rising raw material can pose a threat to the UBS profitability.
  • New environment regulations under Paris agreement (2016) could be a threat to certain existing product categories .
  • Intense competition – Stable profitability has increased the number of players in the industry over last two years which has put downward pressure on not only profitability but also on overall sales.
  • New technologies developed by the competitor or market disruptor could be a serious threat to the industry in medium to long term future.
  • No regular supply of innovative products – Over the years the company has developed numerous products but those are often response to the development by other players. Secondly the supply of new products is not regular thus leading to high and low swings in the sales number over period of time.

Limitations of SWOT Analysis for UBS

Although the SWOT analysis is widely used as a strategic planning tool, the analysis does have its share of limitations.

  • Certain capabilities or factors of an organization can be both a strength and weakness at the same time. This is one of the major limitations of SWOT analysis . For example changing environmental regulations can be both a threat to company it can also be an opportunity in a sense that it will enable the company to be on a level playing field or at advantage to competitors if it able to develop the products faster than the competitors.
  • SWOT does not show how to achieve a competitive advantage, so it must not be an end in itself.
  • The matrix is only a starting point for a discussion on how proposed strategies could be implemented. It provided an evaluation window but not an implementation plan based on strategic competitiveness of UBS
  • SWOT is a static assessment - analysis of status quo with few prospective changes. As circumstances, capabilities, threats, and strategies change, the dynamics of a competitive environment may not be revealed in a single matrix.
  • SWOT analysis may lead the firm to overemphasize a single internal or external factor in formulating strategies. There are interrelationships among the key internal and external factors that SWOT does not reveal that may be important in devising strategies.

Weighted SWOT Analysis of UBS

In light of the above mentioned limitations of the SWOT analysis / matrix, corporate managers decided to provide weightage to each internal strength and weakness of the firm. Organizations also assess the likelihood of events taking place in the coming future and how strong their impact could be on company's performance.

This method is called Weighted SWOT analysis. It is better than doing simplistic SWOT analysis because with Weighted SWOT Analysis UBS managers can focus on the most critical factors and discount the non-important one. It also solves the long list problem where organizations ends up making a long list but none of the factors deemed too critical.

Limitation of Weighted SWOT analysis of UBS

This approach also suffers from one major drawback - it focus on individual importance of factor rather than how they are collectively important and impact the business holistically.

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SWOT Worksheet & Template

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References / Citations & Bibliography

  • M. E. Porter, Competitive Strategy(New York: Free Press, 1980)
  • A. D. Chandler, Strategy and Structure (Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, 1962)
  • O. E. Williamson, Markets and Hierarchies(New York: Free Press, 1975);
  • L. Wrigley, Divisional Autonomy and Diversification (PhD, Harvard Business School, 1970)
  • R. E. White, Generic Business Strategies, Organizational Context and Performance: An Empirical Investigation, Strategic Management Journal7 (1986)