Real Options capture the value of managerial flexibility to adapt strategic
decisions in response to unexpected market developments. A company creates
shareholder value by identifying Real Options, managing of Real Options, and
exercising Real Options, associated with its investment portfolio. The Real
Options method applies financial options theory to quantify the value of management
flexibility, thus turning uncertainty to its advantage in a changing world.
The idea of treating strategic investments as financial options was conceived
by Timothy A. Luehrman in two HBR articles: "Investment Opportunities as Real
Options: Getting Started on the Numbers" (July-August 1998) and "Strategy
as a Portfolio of Real Options" (September-October 1998). In the last article
Luehrman says: "In financial terms, a business strategy is much more like
a series of options than a series of static cash flows".
Use of Real Options. Benefits
As a result of the above, when valuations involve significant future flexibility
or uncertainty and/or future cash-flows alone are close to break-even, flexibility
is a major source of value, and option value must be taken into consideration.
Note that the first mentioned circumstance is typical for strategic scenarios.
And even for strategic decision-making in general.
Formula of Real Options. Calculation
Formula used is Black-Scholes or other similar. Generally, the following
variables determine the value of having (an) option(s) - option value:
Time to expiration (duration).
Degree of uncertainty.
Cost of acquiring the option(s).
Potential cash flows lost, compared to full upfront commitment.
Risk-free interest rate.
Expected present value of future cash flows.
By introducing these factors into business decision-making, the Real Options
method has enabled corporate decision-makers to use uncertainty for the advantage
of the firm, and to create a limit to downside risk.
Real Options Applied to Rapid Labour Mobilization
In some industries, the speed of mobilization of labour coupled with the ready availability of skilled labour is a determinant of success, e.g. Oil and gas drilling when prices rise. I would be intere...
Innovation Management, Culture Change, Organizational Change, Innovative Culture, Organizational Culture Many large-scale attempts to make organizations more innovative are experiencing organizational inertia, barriers and/or...
Strategic Innovation, Strategic Decision-making, Strategic Experimenting, Experiments, Strategic Testing, Innovation Tes The probability of success of a major innovation is difficult to assess. Statistics and other datasets only provide info...