This case is taken from a real interview of an Italian MBB office.
It is an interesting case to test the candidate's ability to run a profitability analysis. Both quantitative and qualitative skills are asked to effectively handle the solution, that requires also the ability to handle and put together a lot of information.
Espresso Whatelse is an Italian company that produces coffee and espresso machines since 1908. It is the Italian market leader and has a strong presence overall in Europe. In 2019, Espresso Whatelse has increased its revenues but it has seen declining profit margin.
Your client wants to understand the root causes of this 2019 trend and how to increase its profit margin again.
What are possible explanations for this trend?
What was our price decrease?
A good candidate should be focusing now his attention on the capsules. Try to challenge him on coffee machines segment asking the following questions: 1) Could machines be the root cause of our client’s profit decrease?
2) Would you suggest to shut down this segment?
3) Can you think of a potential explanation for this?
Ask for some possible reasons for these increased costs
Ask the candidate what could be the reason of this lower efficiency
The CEO is calling and wants to hear from us what the findings of our analysis are. If the candidate asks for 30 seconds, tell him that you have to take the call in that moment.