Blue Ocean Strategy

What is Blue Ocean Strategy?

BLUE OCEAN STRATEGY is the simultaneous pursuit of differentiation and low cost to open up a new market space where there is no competition. It is about creating and capturing uncontested market space, rather than competing head-on with existing industry players. It is based on the view that market boundaries and industry structure are not a given and can be reconstructed. 

Blue ocean strategy offers systematic tools and frameworks to shift from red ocean of competition to blue oceans of new market space.And it allows you to test the commercial viability of your ideas and shows you how to refine your ideas to maximize your upside while minimizing downside risk.

RED OCEANS are all the industries in existence today – the known market space. In red oceans, industry boundaries are defined and accepted, and the competitive rules of the game are known.

Here, companies try to outperform their rivals to grab a greater share of existing demand. As the market space gets crowded, profits and growth are reduced. Products become commodities, leading to cutthroat or ‘bloody’ competition. Hence the term red oceans.

BLUE OCEANS, in contrast, denote all the industries not in existence today – the unknown market space, untainted by competition. In blue oceans, demand is created rather than fought over. There is ample opportunity for growth that is both profitable and rapid. In blue oceans, competition is irrelevant because the rules of the game are waiting to be set. A blue ocean is an analogy to describe the wider, deeper potential to be found in unexplored market space.

Meet the Thought Leaders

Chan Kim and Renée Mauborgne

Professors of Strategy at INSEAD, the top business school in the World

Named #1 Management Thinkers in the World by Thinkers50 in 2019

Authors of global bestsellers Blue Ocean Strategy, Blue Ocean Shift, and Beyond Disruption

In 2023, they were chosen as two of the four leading thinkers in the 100 years of Harvard Business Review’s publication.

Read the Books that changed the way Businesses think about Strategy

Blue Ocean Strategy

Recognized as one of the most iconic and impactful strategy books ever written, Blue Ocean Strategy argues that cutthroat competition results in nothing but a bloody red ocean of rivals fighting over a shrinking profit pool. It presents a systematic approach to making the competition irrelevant and outlines principles and tools any organization can use to create and capture their own blue oceans.

Blue Ocean Shift

Drawing on more than a decade of new research, Blue Ocean Shift is the essential follow-up to Blue Ocean Strategy. It details proven steps to help you create blue oceans, inspire your people’s confidence, and seize new growth. Blue Ocean Shift is the New York Times and #1 Wall Street Journal bestseller.

Beyond Disruption

With three decades of research, the #1 global bestselling authors of Blue Ocean Strategy, W. Chan Kim and Renée Mauborgne, reveal another way to innovate and grow. Just as Blue Ocean Strategy redefined the essence of strategy as creating not competing, Beyond Disruption redefines and expands the existing view of innovation by introducing a new approach, nondisruptive creation, that is free from the destructive displacement that happens when innovators set out to disrupt.

Blue Ocean Tools and Frameworks

Blue Ocean Strategy offers a comprehensive set of analytic tools and frameworks to help students create blue ocean entrepreneurial businesses.

Examples of Blue Ocean Strategy