A Maestro without Borders: How André Rieu Created the Classical Music Market for the Masses

Published 28 Aug 2017
Reference 6304
Topic Strategy
Industry Entertainment Music
Region Global
Length 11 page(s)
Language English

For several decades, the classical music industry has been in decline with demand down, costs up and profits shrinking as many orchestras struggle for survival. Against this backdrop, André Rieu and his Johann Strauss Orchestra stand apart. Instead of competing like all the other orchestras, André Rieu has reconstructed market boundaries between classical music and pop concerts, creating a blue ocean of vast new demand. Rieu and his orchestra have stayed on the Billboard Top 25 Tours list for nearly 2 decades, right alongside the likes of Bruce Springsteen and Justin Bieber. His CDs and DVDs have sold more than 40 million copies versus 10,000 copies for a top classical music CD. This case reviews the competitive practice of the classical music industry and illustrates how Andre Rieu gained insight into unlocking new demand by looking to noncustomers of classical concerts, and how Rieu reconstructed industry boundaries and created new market space, making the competition irrelevant. The case comes with a teaching note that reviews major concepts and frameworks of competitive strategy and blue ocean strategy in the context of the case and provides answers to the questions for class discussions. Additional case material includes a lecture slide pack, and two short videos, which can be downloaded for teaching purposes from https://www.blueoceanstrategy.com/teaching-materials/andre-rieu/
The case material is also available in Chinese and Korean.

Teaching objectives

The teaching of this case aims to
1) Identify the characteristics and limits of competitive strategic practice in the context of analyzing the conditions of the classical music industry
2) Demonstrate how André Rieu created a blue ocean of new demand in a declining industry through reconstructing market boundaries
3) Highlight the important role of noncustomer insights in enabling new demand creation
4) Drive home the key principle of blue ocean strategy – value innovation, which requires the simultaneous pursuit of differentiation and low cost
5) Review major concepts, frameworks and tools of blue ocean strategy in the course of analyzing André Rieu’s strategic move.

  • Differentiation strategy
  • Value innovation
  • International business
  • Benchmarks
  • Customers
  • Value creation
  • Blue ocean strategy
  • Strategy
  • Creating markets
  • Classical Music
  • Declining industry
  • Entertainment
  • Noncustomers
  • Demand creation
  • Market reconstruction
  • Strategic Innovation
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Differentiation
  • Live performance
  • Strategy, Competition
  • Q41617