Winner - EFMD Case Writing Competition - 'Latin American Business Cases' category

JBS S.A.: A Latin American Success Story

JBS S.A.: A Latin American Success Story
Case Code: BSTR497
Case Length: 20 Pages
Period: 2006-2016
Pub Date: 2016
Teaching Note: Available
Price: Rs.600
Organization: JBS, SA
Industry: Animal Protein
Countries: Brazil; Global
Themes: Growth Strategy, Competitive Advantage, International Management
JBS S.A.: A Latin American Success Story
Abstract Case Intro 1 Case Intro 2 Excerpts


This award-winning case tracks the growth of São Paulo-based JBS S.A. from a small butcher shop in Brazil to a global leader in animal protein processing. By 2015, JBS had grown into the world’s largest processor of animal protein with operations in five continents and serving more than 300,000 customers across 150 countries. The journey of JBS was an impressive one with a strategic focus on geographical and product diversification; low-cost production; a diversified portfolio of branded, convenient, and value added products; and a strong and efficient management. Serial acquisitions of established businesses were the bedrock of the company’s evolution. The case describes the strategies adopted by JBS to strengthen its brand image and to grow and profit in a sustainable way. It highlights the competitive advantages developed by JBS in the animal protein industry that placed it ahead of its competitors. The case also presents the challenges the company faced in both domestic and international markets such as fluctuations in currency, economic and political instability, compliance with social and environmental aspects, and issues related to animal health and welfare, and cattle sourcing. While the management of JBS was confident about its strategy, analysts wondered whether the company would be able to meet the rising global demand for animal protein and sustain its growth in the long term.


This case is designed to enable students to:

  • Analyze the strategy adopted by JBS and understand the factors that contributed to the success of JBS
  • Understand the possible advantages of leveraging growth through acquisitions
  • Study the competitive advantages JBS derived being a Brazilian company
  • Examine the challenges faced by emerging Brazilian multinationals in conquering new markets
  • Explore future strategies that JBS can adopt to maintain its dominance in the global animal protein sector



Strategy diamond, Environmental scanning using PESTEL, Porter’s diamond model, Industry analysis, Resourced-based view, Strategic capabilities, Competitive advantage, Acquisition-based growth, Organic growth, International management, globalization strategy

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