Caterpillar Inc. - Differentiating itself from its Competitors *



Mini Case Code : CLIM045
Publication date : 2005
Subject : International Marketing
Industry : Infrastructure
Length : 03 Pages
Price : Rs. 100

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Key words:

Caterpillar Inc. (Caterpillar), earth moving equipment, construction, supplier, agricultural equipment, natural gas engines, gas turbines, logging machinery, power-generation systems, mining, logistics, electric power generation, tractors, Holt Manufacturing Company, C.L. Best Tractor Co., Caterpillar Tractor Co., Caterpillar Mitsubishi Ltd., Shin Caterpillar Mitsubishi Ltd., Six Sigma approach, Advanced Combustion Emissions Reduction Technology (ACERT), US Environmental Protection Agency, standardization, dealer network


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The caselet discusses the competitive strategies adopted by Caterpillar Inc., a leading earth moving equipment manufacturer. It takes a look at the expansion of Caterpillar's product line and analyzes the factors responsible for the company's successful global operations. It talks about the innovations made by Caterpillar to provide quality products to customers throughout the world and how Caterpillar has achieved a competitive edge by having a strong dealer network. It describes Caterpillar's deviation from standardization to serve customers efficiently.


» How Caterpillar differentiated itself from its rivals
» Expansion of Caterpillar's product line
» Global dealer network of Caterpillar


The inception of Caterpillar Inc. (Caterpillar) took place way back in the 1920s. Over the years, Caterpillar became a dominant player in the manufacture of earth moving equipment, and construction and mining equipment and a leading supplier of agricultural equipment.

The company also manufactured diesel and natural gas engines, industrial gas turbines, logging machinery, electrical power-generation systems, etc.

It was recognized as a technology leader in various areas like construction, transportation, mining, energy, logistics, and electric power generation. Caterpillar’s headquarters is situated at Peoria, Illinois, U.S.A.

Its products are manufactured in the US and other locations including Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, China, England, France, Germany, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, the Netherlands, Nigeria, Northern Ireland, Poland, Russia and South Africa...

Questions for Discussion:

1. Comment on Caterpillar's diversification into various businesses over the years.

2. Discuss the reasons for Caterpillar having a competitive edge over its competitors.