Case Study: HR and SG&A Benchmarking of Leading APAC Electronics Distributors

April 27, 2016

Client Situation:

Emerging Strategy was approached by one of the world’s largest electronics components distributors to conduct a detailed benchmarking study targeting organizational structure, cost and operations across APAC. Our client had a track record of successful M&A over the previous 5 years and believed that their organizational and cost structures could be improved by leveraging synergies from the assets acquired in these transactions. To inform this course of action, they sought to better understand organizational structures in their industry, design best practices as well as adopt the leading cost structures used by their main competitors in APAC.


Emerging Strategy leveraged its established geographic presence in APAC countries to conduct extensive primary research interviews as well as secondary research in local languages over the course of several months. For this study, we agreed to benchmark three competitor companies and one non-competitor company. For each company, our team mapped out detailed organizational, operational and cost structures. We analyzed the APAC regional operations within each of the targeted companies with the aim to determine the Asian-based cost structure and headcount of the targets, including an understanding for key cost drivers.


Our research yielded a comprehensive breakdown of the following:
• Selling, general and administrative (SG&A) expenses by headcount (including by location, function and discipline),
• Facilities (both fixed and variable costs associated with warehouses, offices etc.)
• Organizational structure and philosophy. This was done in detail across organizations in China, India, Taiwan, Hong-Kong, Japan, Philippines, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Korea, New Zealand, Vietnam, Thailand and Australia.

Our client’s board of directors used the information provided from this study to inform the business process optimization strategy for their global operations.

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