Chipotle Mexican Grill has been a very successful Mexican fast-food restaurant in the United States with sales of $5.59 billion USD in 2019. It has consistently executed what it calls its Food with Integrity strategy, which is based on sustainable sourcing of quality food supplies locally. The Food with Integrity approach has been combined with its operational strategy to generate a competitive advantage based on fresh ingredients, local sourcing, healthy cooking practices, and ease of ordering. Now, the company is considering expanding globally into China, where local conditions vary widely and are a stark contrast to those found in the United States.
After you have read through the case, respond to each of the following items:
Describe the strategies that have enabled Chipotle to be successful in the United States.
Based on the case data and your research, conduct and summarize a brief SWOT analysis of Chipotle.
Given the results of your analysis, assess Chipotle’s proposed expansion into China.
Explain why you think this is or is not the right expansion strategy for the company at this time. Would the company be able to replicate its success in the United States when expanding into China? Why or why not?
If the Chipotle Board of Directors approved the China expansion and the company moved ahead, what strategy recommendations do you have for the managers?