Guangshen Railway Company Limited SWOT Analysis / Matrix

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SWOT analysis is a vital strategic planning tool that can be used by Guangshen Railway Company Limited managers to do a situational analysis of the company . It is a handy technique to understand the present Strengths (S), Weakness (W), Opportunities (O) & Threats (T) Guangshen Railway Company Limited is facing in its current business environment.

The Guangshen Railway Company Limited is one of the leading companies in its industry. Guangshen Railway Company Limited maintains its dominant position in market by carefully analyzing and reviewing the SWOT analysis.  SWOT analysis an immensenly 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 known as SWOT Matrix.

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

  • SO (strengths-opportunities) Strategies
  • WO (weaknesses-opportunities) Strategies
  • ST (strengths-threats) Strategies
  •  WT (weaknesses-threats) Strategies
Guangshen Railway Company Limited 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 Guangshen Railway Company Limited strengths, and eradicate its weaknesses.

Step by Step Guide to Guangshen Railway Company Limited SWOT Analysis

Strengths of Guangshen Railway Company Limited – Internal Strategic Factors


As one of the leading organizations in its industry, Guangshen Railway Company Limited 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 Guangshen Railway Company Limited are –


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  • 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.
  • High level of customer satisfaction – the company with its dedicated customer relationship management department has able to achieve a high level of customer satisfaction among present customers and good brand equity among the potential customers.
  • Strong distribution network – Over the years Guangshen Railway Company Limited has built a reliable distribution network that can reach majority of its potential market.
  • 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 – Guangshen Railway Company Limited has strong free cash flows that provide resources in the hand of the company to expand into new projects.
  • Strong Brand Portfolio – Over the years Guangshen Railway Company Limited has invested in building a strong brand portfolio. The SWOT analysis of Guangshen Railway Company Limited just underlines this fact. This brand portfolio can be extremely useful if the organization wants to expand into new product categories.
  • Highly successful at Go To Market strategies for its products.


Weakness of Guangshen Railway Company Limited – Internal Strategic Factors


Weakness are the areas where Guangshen Railway Company Limited can improve upon. Strategy is about making choices and weakness are the areas where a firm 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 Guangshen Railway Company Limited 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.
  • Need more investment in new technologies. Given the scale of expansion and different geographies the company is planning to expand into, Guangshen Railway Company Limited 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.
  • The profitability ratio and Net Contribution % of Guangshen Railway Company Limited are below the industry average.
  • Limited success outside core business – Even though Guangshen Railway Company Limited is one of the leading organizations in its industry it has faced challenges in moving to other product segments with its present culture.
  • 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.
  • 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 Guangshen Railway Company Limited
  • Organization structure is only compatible with present business model thus limiting expansion in adjacent product segments.

Opportunities for Guangshen Railway Company Limited – External Strategic Factors


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  • 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 Guangshen Railway Company Limited to drive home its advantage in new technology and gain market share in the new product category.
  • Lower inflation rate – The low inflation rate bring more stability in the market, enable credit at lower interest rate to the customers of Guangshen Railway Company Limited.
  • Decreasing cost of transportation because of lower shipping prices can also bring down the cost of Guangshen Railway Company Limited’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 Guangshen Railway Company Limited in other product categories.
  • Opening up of new markets because of government agreement – the adoption of new technology standard and government free trade agreement has provided Guangshen Railway Company Limited an opportunity to enter a new emerging market.
  • The new technology provides an opportunity to Guangshen Railway Company Limited 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.
  • The market development will lead to dilution of competitor’s advantage and enable Guangshen Railway Company Limited to increase its competitiveness compare to the other competitors.
  • Economic uptick and increase in customer spending, after years of recession and slow growth rate in the industry, is an opportunity for Guangshen Railway Company Limited to capture new customers and increase its market share.

Threats Guangshen Railway Company Limited Facing - External Strategic Factors

  • 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 pay level especially movements such as $15 an hour and increasing prices in the China can lead to serious pressure on profitability of Guangshen Railway Company Limited
  • Shortage of skilled workforce in certain global market represents a threat to steady growth of profits for Guangshen Railway Company Limited   in those markets.
  • Increasing trend toward isolationism in the American economy can lead to similar reaction from other government thus negatively impacting the international sales.
  • 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.
  • Rising raw material can pose a threat to the Guangshen Railway Company Limited profitability.
  • Growing strengths of local distributors also presents a threat in some markets as the competition is paying higher margins to the local distributors.
  • Liability laws in different countries are different and Guangshen Railway Company Limited may be exposed to various liability claims given change in policies in those markets.

Limitations of SWOT Analysis for Guangshen Railway Company Limited

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 Guangshen Railway Company Limited
  • 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 Guangshen Railway Company Limited

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 Guangshen Railway Company Limited 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 Guangshen Railway Company Limited

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)