Case | HBS Case Collection | September 2004 (Revised May 2006)

Bohemian Crowns: Ceskoslovenska Obchodni Banka (A)

by Rawi E. Abdelal, Vincent Dessain and Monika Stachowiak


Tells the story of the Czech transition from a centrally planned to a free market economy, describing the first economic reforms, the fixed-exchange rate regime, and the voucher privatization. Also explains why, in the middle of the 1990s, the Czech Republic liberalized its capital account and how this affected the Czech banking system, leading to a massive credit boom. Explores why Ceskoslovenska Obchodni Banka (CSOB), the country's fourth largest bank, decided not to participate in the credit boom and how CSOB determined and pursued its expansion strategy. Students assume the position of Pavel Kavanek, CSOB's CEO who, in June 2000, must decide whether CSOB should acquire IPB, another large Czech bank on the brink of bankruptcy.

Keywords: History; Currency Exchange Rate; Credit; Government Administration; Decisions; Economic Systems; Expansion; Mergers and Acquisitions; Developing Countries and Economies; Banks and Banking; Banking Industry; Czech Republic;


Abdelal, Rawi E., Vincent Dessain, and Monika Stachowiak. "Bohemian Crowns: Ceskoslovenska Obchodni Banka (A)." Harvard Business School Case 705-007, September 2004. (Revised May 2006.)