SKODA AUTO: FROM NO-CLASS TO WORLD-CLASS IN ONE DECADE (REVISED)
Skoda Auto is one of the oldest car brands in the world. Prior to its nationalization in 1946, the company was one of the technologically most advanced car companies. For more than four decades, Skoda Auto's potential was severely limited. It was only when Volkswagen bought an equity stake in 1991 for Skoda Auto to regain its lost fame. In fact, the company became the success story from Central and Eastern Europe. Between 1991 and 2002, the company increased its sales from 172,000 units to 445,000 units, of which 84% were exported. The case explains in detail the three-stage transformation of Skoda Auto. By 2002/3, the company was definitely world-class and a key driver of the transformation in the Czech Republic. Nevertheless, some significant decisions had to be made. What was the role of the Skoda going to be within the VW Group? What could be done to overcome the negative perception of the brand? What would change due to the expansion of the EU?