Summit Therapeutics plc SWOT Analysis / Matrix

Business Essays, Term Papers & Research Papers

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

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


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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 called SWOT Matrix.

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

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

SWOT Matrix Strategies Objective

The central purpose of SWOT matrix is to identify the strategies that an organization can utilize to exploit external opportunities, counter threats, and build on & protect Summit Therapeutics plc strengths, and eradicate its weaknesses.

Step by Step Guide to Summit Therapeutics plc SWOT Analysis

Strengths of Summit Therapeutics plc – Internal Strategic Factors


As one of the leading firms in its industry, Summit Therapeutics plc has numerous strengths that help 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 Summit Therapeutics plc are –


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  • Successful track record of developing new products – product innovation.
  • 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.
  • Highly successful at Go To Market strategies for its products.
  • Highly skilled workforce through successful training and learning programs. Summit Therapeutics plc 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.
  • Automation of activities brought consistency of quality to Summit Therapeutics plc products and has enabled the company to scale up and scale down based on the demand conditions in the market.
  • Superb Performance in New Markets – Summit Therapeutics plc 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.
  • Reliable suppliers – It has a strong base of reliable supplier of raw material thus enabling the company to overcome any supply chain bottlenecks.
  • Strong Free Cash Flow – Summit Therapeutics plc has strong free cash flows that provide resources in the hand of the company to expand into new projects.


Weakness of Summit Therapeutics plc – Internal Strategic Factors


Weakness are the areas where Summit Therapeutics plc can improve upon. Strategy is about making choices and weakness are the areas where an organization can improve using SWOT analysis and build on its competitive advantage and strategic positioning.


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  • Investment in Research and Development is below the fastest growing players in the industry. Even though Summit Therapeutics plc is spending above the industry average on Research and Development, it has not been able to compete with the leading players in the industry in terms of innovation. It has come across as a mature firm looking forward to bring out products based on tested features in the market.
  • 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.
  • 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 profitability ratio and Net Contribution % of Summit Therapeutics plc are below the industry average.
  • Organization structure is only compatible with present business model thus limiting expansion in adjacent product segments.
  • Need more investment in new technologies. Given the scale of expansion and different geographies the company is planning to expand into, Summit Therapeutics plc 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.
  • 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 Summit Therapeutics plc is not very good at demand forecasting thus end up keeping higher inventory both in-house and in channel.

Opportunities for Summit Therapeutics plc – External Strategic Factors


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  • Opening up of new markets because of government agreement – the adoption of new technology standard and government free trade agreement has provided Summit Therapeutics plc an opportunity to enter a new emerging market.
  • 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 Summit Therapeutics plc in other product categories.
  • The market development will lead to dilution of competitor’s advantage and enable Summit Therapeutics plc to increase its competitiveness compare to the other competitors.
  • 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 Summit Therapeutics plc. In the next few years the company can leverage this opportunity by knowing its customer better and serving their needs using big data analytics.
  • Decreasing cost of transportation because of lower shipping prices can also bring down the cost of Summit Therapeutics plc’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.
  • Economic uptick and increase in customer spending, after years of recession and slow growth rate in the industry, is an opportunity for Summit Therapeutics plc to capture new customers and increase its market share.
  • Organization’s core competencies can be a success in similar other products field. A comparative example could be - GE healthcare research helped it in developing better Oil drilling machines.
  • The new technology provides an opportunity to Summit Therapeutics plc 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.

Threats Summit Therapeutics plc Facing - External Strategic Factors

  • 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.
  • Increasing trend toward isolationism in the American economy can lead to similar reaction from other government thus negatively impacting the international sales.
  • Changing consumer buying behavior from online channel could be a threat to the existing physical infrastructure driven supply chain model.
  • New technologies developed by the competitor or market disruptor could be a serious threat to the industry in medium to long term future.
  • Shortage of skilled workforce in certain global market represents a threat to steady growth of profits for Summit Therapeutics plc   in those markets.
  • Growing strengths of local distributors also presents a threat in some markets as the competition is paying higher margins to the local distributors.
  • The company can face lawsuits in various markets given - different laws and continuous fluctuations regarding product standards in those markets.
  • Rising pay level especially movements such as $15 an hour and increasing prices in the China can lead to serious pressure on profitability of Summit Therapeutics plc

Limitations of SWOT Analysis for Summit Therapeutics plc

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 Summit Therapeutics plc
  • 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.

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Weighted SWOT Analysis of Summit Therapeutics plc

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 Summit Therapeutics plc 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 Summit Therapeutics plc

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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Example of Weighted SWOT Analysis

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SWOT Worksheet & Template

If you like to do your own SWOT analysis or want to make your own Weighted SWOT SWOT matrix then feel free to download Fern Fort University SWOT Analysis Template.


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)