Tag Archives: Management Case Study

CIMA MCS May/Aug 2021: Trayyner

The CIMA MCS May and August 2021 case study is based around a scenario called Trayyner and in this blog post I will be focusing on the news articles featured in the pre seen materials.

You can find the official MCS May 2021 pre seen materials from CIMA here.

Trayyner is a company that offers executive training courses but before I get stuck into the news articles, it’s worth paying attention to the opening statement on the pre-seen materials in regards to COVID.

COVID-19 Statement
This pre-seen and the case study in general (while aiming to reflect real life), are set in a context
where the COVID-19 pandemic has not had an impact.

taken from the Trayyner pre seen materials opening page

What this tells me is that students have been referring to COVID directly in previous sittings of the case study exams. Perhaps using COVID as a reason why a companies profits have fallen, or extra health and safety measures that need to be considered in light of COVID.

While it’s important to make yourself feel part of the case study scenario, you need to stick to the facts you are presented with in the materials.

It’s tricky, as students are encouraged to refer to real life industry examples to give context, however, it’s clear that students have using the real life situation of COVID to explain and base their recommendations in the case study exams.

Pre Seen Materials: New Articles

The news articles at the end can be loaded with information and some pointers on what you could see on exam day. I’ve examined the first three in detail and shared my thoughts below.

In my opinion, it makes sense to look at the Southland Gazette and Northland Business Daily articles together. The first article in the Northland Business Daily is centered around Parastatals and how their roles are changing.

A parastatal is a company that is owned by the government, but is run by a board of directors – the article points out;

While they may be expected to operate at a profit, they are also expected to operate in the national interest. That could mean that they must cap prices in order to ensure that the needs of domestic and commercial customers are met.

The roles of parastatals are changing in many countries, with a greater emphasis on creating profit and maximising wealth.

taken from the pre seen materials page 22

Before I draw any conclusions, let’s have a look at the Southland Gazette article. Here we can find a direct criticism from the government for The Telecommunications Corporation of Southland (TeCoS) attending a training course in a luxury hotel.

The Minister for Telecommunications has criticised the Board of The Telecommunications Corporation of Southland (TeCoS), the parastatal responsible for the provision of telecommunications across Southland, for attending a training session in a luxury hotel in Hopeland.

She queried the cost of this training and asked for a justification of its value

taken from the pre seen materials page 23

I believe there are positives and negatives hidden in both of these stories.

Let’s start with the positive.

Training Courses Opportunities

We understand that the role of parastatals are changing with a emphasis on creating profit and maximizing wealth. Looking at the courses offered by Trayyner, they only offer two courses for Parastatals; (Board Duties and Internal Audit). So there is an opportunity to either create new courses around creating value, business partnering or stakeholder management for the new skillsets the board of directors at parastatals will need.

Alternatively, there might be existing Trayyner courses that can be marketed to these companies to meet their needs of an evolving skillset.

And now for the glaringly obvious risk.

Luxury Venues Criticised

The second article doesn’t look good.

Despite the fact that TeCoS have defended the training course they have attended, they will be under pressure when thinking about future courses. Think of the MP expenses scandal in the UK, where Government ministers were making excessive claims for their own benefit, while this is not in the same league it’s a similar theme.

The public won’t like the fact these government controlled companies are being wined and dined at luxury hotels for training courses.

This negative press could impact Trayyner and they could see lost business from parastatals.

That said, Trayyner could already be actively thinkin about how to mitigate that risk. Do they offer in-house training to these clients, or perhaps think of a more low key venue for these types of events?

The next news article paints a positive picture for the executive training course industry and Trayyner – a happy story after the muddy waters of the previous one.

The article tells us;

Northland’s Navy has announced that it plans to incorporate budgets and financial planning into the training programmes for all of its senior officers.

“Our officers will still be able to navigate ships and operate their systems, but we have identified a growing need for training in various aspects of management alongside technical specialisms. Ships’ captains frequently have to manage complicated budgets.”

taken from the pre seen materials page 24

This can only be good news and more business for Trayyner, in theory, it should be low hanging fruit for Trayyner to take advantage of this news.

Given the specialist nature of the courses and trainers at the disposal of Trayyner, they should be in a position to react quickly to this news and start their sales pitch with the Northland Navy on courses that would meet their requirements.

It’s also really welcome news considering what we are told in the pre-seen materials ‘Marketing Activities’ on page 6.

Trayyner has an extensive client base that is drawn mainly from regions that had developing, economies until relatively recently, but that have transitioned to maturity. Countries in those regions frequently have large numbers of professional people who occupy senior roles within indigenous and parastatal (government-owned) organisations.

It seems that the market that Trayyner operates in is reaching maturity, so another market segment to aim at like the Navy or Armed Forces, whose personnel also need a more rounded skillset that includes financial courses could prove to be very lucrative for Trayyner and their competitors.

CIMA MCS: Astranti Case Study Course

The full Astranti MCS case study course has recently been revamped and contains more resources than ever to help your pass the MCS exam first time.

  • Pre seen materials pack (analysis, top 10 issues, industry examples & 30 questions)
  • 5 x mock exams with feedback
  • Syllabus theory revision series
  • Exam technique series
  • Ethics and questions packs
  • Tutor feedback
  • Pass guarantee & money back guarantee

Good Luck with your studies.

CIMA MCS May 2019: Jord Homes


CIMA released the pre-seen materials for the May 2019 MCS exam last week, you can find the official document from CIMA here.

CIMA MCS May 2019: Jord Homes Astranti Course

The May 2019 MCS Course from Astranti comes with a PASS GUARANTEE.

I used Astranti to pass my MCS exam first time last year, you can read about how I passed the MCS Norton exam here.

Here is what you can expect from Astranti with the Jord Homes MCS Course;

  • Complete pre-seen pack of videos
  • 3 x Full tuition videos
  • 2 x Study texts
  • 2 x Live Masterclasses
  • 3 x Full Mock Exams (based on Jord Homes case study)
  • Detailed marking and feedback
  • Ethics Pack
  • Pass Guarantee

To give you an insight into the pre-seen videos pack, here is over an hour on the pre-seen materials analysis on Jord Homes.


Pre-Seen Materials Analysis

I’ve had a run through the pre-seen materials for the May 2019 MCS Jord Homes scenario and have identified the following key information and focus areas for your exam next month;

Room for Growth

The below quote from the pre-seen materials is a clear indication there is room to expand operations into Asia and Latin America.

Developing countries within Asia and Latin America have large and growing population bases and rising disposable income, presenting a huge opportunity for the global prefabricated housing industry.

Shareholder Pressure

Jord Homes is 40% owned by instituational shareholders, while this investment is welcome it also comes with extra demands. The pre-seen tells us that they are questioning the current strategy of Jord Homes.

The Larsson family has a policy of maintaining the current production levels to continue to position Jord houses as rare and exclusive products. However, in the last year, this policy has been questioned by some institutional shareholders, who have suggested it is time to grow the business.

Local Trends

This also ties in with the above point, the shareholders are questioning Jord Homes strategy of being a high end, bespoke luxury company. It has served them well in the their current market but trends in Corvola are changing and it’s not only the customers demands that pose a threat but also the introduction of rival competitors.

However, in the last 5 years, due to demographic changes, Corvola has experienced a shortage in affordable housing, particularly in its main cities. During this time, several new prefabricated house building businesses have been set up in Corvola to address this need.

Financials – no big indicators?

I’ve run through the P&L  and SOFP and there isn’t much there to get your teeth into. No big outliers, the margins have remained constant over the last 12 months as you can see from this P&L analysis below.


The Statement of Financial Position is much the same, nothing screams at you. Although there are a couple of subtle indicators here;

  • Cash in the bank has gone up 10,000 (17,010 to 26,480)
  • There is no long term debt on the balance sheet

This suggests, to me, that there is plenty of money or sources of finance available to invest in the business.

I hope this has given you a few pointers with your MCS exam preparation.

Also, there is a 35 minute Q&A session with a CIMA qualified tutor on the upcoming MCS exam.

Good Luck!

CIMA MCS November 2016: Portafone

Well, the MCS students got the pre-seen material for their November exam yesterday afternoon and the case study scenario revolves around a mobile phone company called Portafone. 

The company designs and manufactures mobile telephones and in your role as financial manager you will be required to work all functional areas of the business and the bulk of work revolves around management accounting.

Understanding your role in the MCS exam is crucial as it will determine how you approach each question and you will need to cater your answers accordingly.

You can find the official pre-seen material for the November 2016 MCS Portafone from CIMA here.

Portafone: Pre-Seen Video Analysis

The first port of call (no pun intended) is to analyse the pre-seen material for the CIMA MCS exam. I would suggest going through the material on your own first and make notes on the key points and highlighting the important information – then watch the pre-seen video analysis from Astranti (below) and align your notes against the comments made by the tutors.

You can find the full set of videos on the November MCS here

Portafone: Strategic Analysis

The strategic analysis of the company should be done next so you can identify the strengths and weaknesses of the company and understand their strategic objectives.

Using the pre-seen analysis and strategic analysis together you will now probably have a good idea of what types of questions could come up. If there is a significant weakness in the company i.e. they are not committing enough investment and time in marketing, then there will probably be a question on the marketing mix (and remember you will need to think about this from a Financial Manager point of view).

To Strategic Analysis video will give you a much better understanding of Portfones strengths, weaknesses and overall strategy of the company.

You can find the full set of videos on the November MCS here

Portafone: Top 10 Issues

The Top 10 Issues video will highlight the most likely questions and topics that could come up on exam day. This is based on the tutors analysis of the pre-seen material alongside the strategic analysis of Portafone. 

It’s a great way to give your studies for the November MCS a clear focus on syllabus areas to brush up. Understanding and being prepared for the most likely questions to come up will give you a great chance of passing the CIMA MCS first time.

You can find the full set of videos on the November MCS here

Astranti MCS Pass Guarantee

Finally, the full MCS course for the Portafone case study covers every single base ranging from all pre-seen videos, mock exams with marking and online classes.

They believe by taking the course you will pass the CIMA MCS exam first time, so much so they offer a pass guarantee to all students.

You can find full details on the MCS course with pass guarantee here.

MCS Course Contents:

  • MCS study text (part 1 and 2)
  • Pre-seen analysis (video and text)
  • Strategic analysis (video and text)
  • Top 10 issues (video and text)
  • Industry analysis (video and text)
  • 2 x online master classes – each class is a full day revision (recorded and live)
  • 3 x online mock exams – answered with detailed tutor feedback
  • Ethics pack
  • Personal advice and guidance

CIMA MCS August 2016: SparkSpace

The CIMA case study scenario for the upcoming MCS exam in August is based around a company called SparkSpace. This marks the beginning of the study period for those students taking the exam, all of your preparation and planning to pass the CIMA MCS first time can start now!

You can find the official pre-seen material for the August 2016 MCS from CIMA here.

SparkSpace: Pre-Seen Video Analysis

Understanding the pre-seen material is crucial to achieving a pass mark on exam day. Astranti are the market leaders in case study materials with their series of video analysis a must watch for all students.

Below is a preview of the pre-seen analysis for SparkSpace.

You can find the full set of videos on the August MCS here.

SparkSpace: Strategic Analysis

The strategic analysis of the MCS scenario SparkSpace is up next, here you will begin to understand and think about the mission and strategic goals of the company. What are their strengths and weaknesses? Are their strategic goals in line with ethical issues?

You can find the full set of videos on the August MCS here.

Wise Choice Hotels: Top 10 Issues

The Top 10 Issues video gives you a focus on the types of questions and areas you could expect to see on exam day. The tutor goes into detail why they believe these types of questions and areas of the syllabus will come up on exam day – a useful tool and video that will help you pass the CIMA case study.

You can find the full set of videos on the August MCS here.

Astranti MCS Pass Guarantee

I passed the OCS last year using the Astranti videos (pre-seen analysis, Top 10 issues and Strategic analysis) and would thoroughly recommend them.

Here is what is included in the course.

  • MCS study text (part 1 and 2)
  • Pre-seen analysis (video and text)
  • Strategic analysis (video and text)
  • Top 10 issues (video and text)
  • Industry analysis (video and text)
  • 2 x online master classes – each class is a full day revision (recorded and live)
  • 3 x online mock exams – answered with detailed tutor feedback
  • Ethics pack
  • Personal advice and guidance

You can find full details on the MCS course with pass guarantee here.

Good Luck!

May 2016 OCS, MCS, SCS: Industry Analysis

The pre-seen material for the May 2016 CIMA case study exams have been released for a good few weeks now, so you should have a good understanding of the case study scenario.

However, it’s crucial you complement your knowledge on the case study by researching the industry in question. To pass the CIMA case study exams you must be able to give full and comprehensive answers that cover the pre-seen material, unseen material, technical knowledge AND the real life industry analysis.

By ticking all of these boxes when writing your reports and email replies in the case study exam you’ll give yourself the best chance of passing.

See below for some useful links that will help you prepare for exam day. Meanwhile, Astranti have spent hours and hours doing the research for you, you can also find the industry analysis preview videos below.

Good Luck for those preparing for the May case study exams!

OCS May 2016 Case Study: Sanchez Navarra

Here are some useful links on the beauty and bath products industry that will help you understand the real life situation around Sanchez Navarra.

Market Research on bath and body products – taken from euromonitor.com

How to lead a successful bath and body business – taken from indiebusinessnetwork.com

Cosmetics manufacturing business plan – taken from bplans.com


You can find the full video of the OCS Industry Analysis here

MCS May 2016 Case Study: IC Optical

The opticians industry is an industry most of the population can relate to. If you don’t wear glasses then someone in your family usually does, so you should know something at least on how the industry works. Even if it’s just the expensive price lenses and frames cost!

Here are some useful links of the industry analysis and further down you will find a preview of the industry analysis from Astranti.

Opticians: Industry facts – taken from hoovers.com

Top 10 Business trends for the eye care industry – taken from eyecarebusiness.com

Opticians in the UK: A market research report – taken from ibisworld.co.uk


You can find the full video of the MCS Industry Analysis here

SCS May 2016 Case Study: Dreem Park

Finally, the Strategic level case study exam is focused on the theme park and amusement industry. Here are a few links on the trends and market reseach associated with Dreem Park – you can also watch a preview of the industry analysis that has been compiled by the guys at Astranti.

Amusement parks and attractions industry information – taken from iaapa.org

Theme Park industry trends and opportunities – taken from prnewswire.com

Park world online: industry news and info – taken from parkworld-online.com

You can find the full video of the SCS Industry Analysis here

CIMA MCS May 2016: IC Optical

It’s here! CIMA released the pre-seen material for the May 2016 sitting of the managemebt level case study exam – you can view the official document here.

CIMA have also released the May MCS case study pre-exam kit too which is packed full of resources, links and helpful hints on how to approach and ultimately pass the exam – you can find it here.

It’s also worth noting that the “Ask a Tutor” session for the MCS is on April 28th with more details available here. Please see below for the important dates for the May sitting of all case study exams. Good Luck!


IC Optical: Pre-Seen Analysis

The video preview from Astranti on the pre-seen analysis on the May 2016 MCS is now live and can be viewed below. The tutor goes through the pre-seen material issued by CIMA and points out the key facts and gets you thinking about the company IC Optical.

Understanding the pre-seen material is key to passing the CIMA case study exams and these videos will give you a solid footing when approaching the exam.


You can find the full set of IC Optical case study videos here.

IC Optical: Strategic Analysis

Alongside the pre-seen analysis you should also consider the case study from a strategic point of view. What are IC Optical’s strategic objectives and what can they improve on as a business? What are their weaknesses? Answers to these kind of questions will give you more depth to your responses on exam day and will give the “bigger picture” perspective.

The preview video below is well worth a watch for MCS students.


You can find the full set of IC Optical case study videos here.

Astranti MCS Pass Guarantee

Astranti are so sure you will get a pass mark by taking their full case study course, that if you don’t pass they will give you the next full MCS course for free.

Here is what is included in the course.

  • MCS study text (part 1 and 2)
  • Pre-seen analysis (video and text)
  • Strategic analysis (video and text)
  • Top 10 issues (video and text)
  • Industry analysis (video and text)
  • 2 x online master classes – each class is a full day revision (recorded and live)
  • 3 x online mock exams – answered with detailed tutor feedback
  • Ethics pack
  • Personal advice and guidance

You can find full details on the MCS course from Astranti visit here

*I will update this post once more resources become available for the May 2016 MCS

CIMA Feb 2016 MCS: Pizzatime

Finally, the Management level students have been put out of their misery as CIMA released the pre-seen materials for the February MCS! You can find the full official document from CIMA here.

It’s a week later than was scheduled on the CIMA website but nevertheless work can now commence on analysing the pre-seen materials.

Astranti have already released their series of videos to help students through their preparation for the February sitting. Below is a sample of what you can you expect.

The final video preview below is over an hours footage of one of the MCS Masterclasses that tells you the keys to passing the exam. 

Good Luck to those sitting the Pizzatime exam next month!

CIMA Feb 2016: MCS Pre-seen Analysis

You can find the full set of videos here: MCS Preseen vids

CIMA Feb 2016: MCS Strategic Analysis

You can find the whole of the Pizzatime strategic analysis here:MCS Course Videos

CIMA Feb 2016: MCS Masterclass

You can attend the MCS masterclasses here:MCS Masterclasses