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photomc
01-08-2007, 10:25 PM
Curious, can anyone recall when the last price increase was? Seems like it might have been early last year (like around this time or earlier). While I don't care for a price increase anymore than anyone else (we all have limited expendable income I would guess) this does not seem out of place to me. And seems like just today, saw a thread here on a price increase on Efke films. Not picking on Efke, just pointing out that as the $ is weak, and other cost go up the cost of things (including film) could go up as well.

Also, the price of Ilford here in the US was much below the market price before Ilford had their problems, perhaps this is actually the next stage in adjusting the price to be more in line with actual production cost and we have just been lucky that they did not try to re-coup this cost right out of re-org. This is just speculation in part, but I have read where Ilford USA film prices were below where they should have been and would think that this is just an adjustment and perhaps a way to keep providing us with a product we said we wanted, in formats that we wanted.

Then again, maybe I'm wrong ...

kjsphoto
01-08-2007, 10:42 PM
Mike you could be right but with this new increase they are now quite a bit more expensive than Kodak if you compare TMax 400 to HP5+ by looking at prices on freestyle. Even before the increase they were more expensive.

Doesn't make much sense to me as Ilford film is not better. I love HP5 but I can learn to love another.

LIek I said they are jsut pricing themselves out of the market. Look at Efke you can get 50 sheets for around $101 8x10, Kodak 50 sheets $155 now with the increase Ilford HP5 in 8x10 for 50 sheets will be $166. I realize that Efke does not sell 400 speed film but still if you compare FP4 is the same on HP5 at $166, and Efke is almost $60 cheaper. They need to realize that EKFE is a good film and people will make a switch and leave. You think they had problems before the re-structuring, let them keep raising the prices and they will be out of business in the film market.

People only have so much expendable income as you say.

Just my two cents.

Petzi
01-08-2007, 10:50 PM
Mike you could be right but with this new increase they are now quite a bit more expensive than Kodak if you compare TMax 400 to HP5+ by looking at prices on freestyle. Even before the increase they were more expensive.

Last I checked, customs duties were 5.8% for film. And Kodak could probably compete with Ilford even if Ilford didn't have to pay that.

photomc
01-08-2007, 10:52 PM
We are actually coming from the same place kevin, I really do understand. I shoot 4x5, 5x7 and 8x10 plus the odd roll of 120. The only Ilford I can afford to shoot is 4x5 and 120 (strange last time I priced Efke 120 vs Ilford they were about the same - go figure). Also, I prefer the 50 sheet box so that I know I can load more than 12 holders (OK, that does not happen that often).

Plus when testing film, it is much easier on the pocket book to test using Efke than Ilford. All that said....I have had the infrequent quality issue with Efke, that I have not had with Ilford. And Efke does not have a 400 speed film that I am aware of...so it is either Kodak or Ilford (I just haven't gone through the process to pick one for the sheet films - like the idea of using one film for all three formats - 4x5,5x7 and 8x10).

Let's hope this will be the last increase from anyone for a while.

copake_ham
01-08-2007, 11:18 PM
Since I only shoot 35 and 120 I am not really hurt by this increase - espescially since by chance I did buy a brick of HP5+ last month.

My suggestion to all, and espescially the big format folk, would be to stock up now (provided you have good storage capabilities) at the pre-increase prices.

Of course this helps Ilford dealers clear their shelves of aging inventory and thus helps Ilford book more orders for (higher priced) replenishment. After all, they need we "end users" to complete the pass-through.

So buy now on the past 2006 price increase. Then we can all get back to shooting off the stull until next year at this time and do this "griping" all over again for the 2008 price boost - and consequent "inventory clearance" by buying at the by then "old" 2007 increase! ;)

Roger Hicks
01-09-2007, 01:45 AM
And, yes, this all started with Roger and his unnecessary gratuitous statement that "W" has been responsible for the trading decline of the dollar.


George,

Do you EVER read what I said? I knew there would be the usual statements that Ilford were pricing themselves out of the market, etc., so I suggested a very simple, very obvious reason why imported goods (such as Leicas and Ilford film) are going up faster than the US rate of inflation.

I chose W's arrival in power as a convenient date that most of us remember. Do YOU remember exactly when the dollar started to slide? 'Cos I don't. But I do remember that around then, my dollar income was worth about 35 per cent more than it is now. There were always small fluctuations, a nickel or so, but not 40 cents or more, from about 93 cents at best to about $1.35 at worst.

If you choose to interpret simple economics as an 'unnecessary gratuitous statement', there's not much that I or anyone else can do about it.

The dollar IS weak. The real price of oil in euros or sterling has increased very little, if at all. Do the sums. A $75 barrel today is under 60 euros. When Dubbya came to power -- as I say, it's a date we can all remember a lot easier than the exact date the dollar started to slide -- you could have bought a 60 euro barrel of oil for maybe $55...

So: the US is paying more for oil (= film base, packaging, transport) AND is struggling with a weak dollar which should on its own have accounted for a 30-40 per cent price rise in 6 years or whatever it is. This is why lots of things now cost a lot more than they used to, with price rises way ahead of the US rate of inflation. I'd expect a 50 per cent price rise on imports from hard-currency areas over that period, to accommodate the weak dollar and its side-effects. I even put in the footnote about 'hard' currency so you wouldn't complain at that. So you found something else...

This is NOT America-bashing. It is, as I said, simple economics. My point was that a manufacturer supplying goods to a legitimate importer will normally hold back price rises for as long as possible, and then keep them to a minimum, whereas a grey importer, at the mercy of currency fluctuations, increased transport costs, etc., will probably have to put up prices faster because they do not and indeed cannot take the same view of brand loyalty and mutual trust between customer and supplier.

Now do you understand why I made my 'gratuitous' comment?

R.

FrankB
01-09-2007, 02:33 AM
7% is hardly profiteering, especially (as has been pointed out) with rising transport and manfacturing costs.

When Ilford went into administration not very long ago the wails of despair from these forums were loud and long (I know, I was one of the wailers). They restructured to fit the smaller market and came back. Because of that we still have a major high-quality film, paper and chemicals materials producer who is publicly committed to traditional black & white photography and who is both bringing out new products and bringing back old ones (possibly two, I'm genuinely not sure whether Fuji still fit all of the above criteria).

There have been requests on the forums for more new products, including several threads on "Delta 25". Well, development (no pun intended) of that emulsion and other products will require funding. Where do you think the money for that will come from?

Ilford operated at a loss before and it drove them into the ground. I for one am not going to criticise their current business model while the product quality is high and the company's future is secure.

Roger Hicks
01-09-2007, 02:45 AM
Ilford operated at a loss before and it drove them into the ground. I for one am not going to criticise their current business model while the product quality is high and the company's future is secure.


A direct, on-the-record quote from Ilford, just after the management buy-out succeeded, concerning their strategy before bankruptcy:

"We bet the farm on digital, and we very nearly won."

This is of course a reference to the way they treated silver as a cash cow to fund inkjet paper development. Understandably, they never gave me the exact figures, but equally, they didn't argue when I suggested (under the old regime) that silver provided 120-150 per cent of their profits.

Cheers,

R.

copake_ham
01-09-2007, 08:58 AM
George,

Do you EVER read what I said? I knew there would be the usual statements that Ilford were pricing themselves out of the market, etc., so I suggested a very simple, very obvious reason why imported goods (such as Leicas and Ilford film) are going up faster than the US rate of inflation.

I chose W's arrival in power as a convenient date that most of us remember. Do YOU remember exactly when the dollar started to slide? 'Cos I don't. But I do remember that around then, my dollar income was worth about 35 per cent more than it is now. There were always small fluctuations, a nickel or so, but not 40 cents or more, from about 93 cents at best to about $1.35 at worst.

If you choose to interpret simple economics as an 'unnecessary gratuitous statement', there's not much that I or anyone else can do about it.

The dollar IS weak. The real price of oil in euros or sterling has increased very little, if at all. Do the sums. A $75 barrel today is under 60 euros. When Dubbya came to power -- as I say, it's a date we can all remember a lot easier than the exact date the dollar started to slide -- you could have bought a 60 euro barrel of oil for maybe $55...

So: the US is paying more for oil (= film base, packaging, transport) AND is struggling with a weak dollar which should on its own have accounted for a 30-40 per cent price rise in 6 years or whatever it is. This is why lots of things now cost a lot more than they used to, with price rises way ahead of the US rate of inflation. I'd expect a 50 per cent price rise on imports from hard-currency areas over that period, to accommodate the weak dollar and its side-effects. I even put in the footnote about 'hard' currency so you wouldn't complain at that. So you found something else...

This is NOT America-bashing. It is, as I said, simple economics. My point was that a manufacturer supplying goods to a legitimate importer will normally hold back price rises for as long as possible, and then keep them to a minimum, whereas a grey importer, at the mercy of currency fluctuations, increased transport costs, etc., will probably have to put up prices faster because they do not and indeed cannot take the same view of brand loyalty and mutual trust between customer and supplier.

Now do you understand why I made my 'gratuitous' comment?

R.

Hmmm...Dollar slide vs. Euro began in 2004. "W" was unelected in 2000. US had strong dollar policy for four years after "W" took office.

Hmmm...Current dollar price of a barrel of oil is around $55 (not $75 which was the peak price last Summer).

Hmmm...Fed Reserve sets interest rate policy which directly influences dollar trading value - not W.

Hmmm...Single largest US trading partner has been for many years and remains Canada. So relative trading value of USD$ vs. CDN$ much more relevant than Euro.

Hmmm...Other largest trading partners for finished goods (oil, as a commodity. is multi-sourced) are Japan and China both of whom have huge trade surpluses with US.

Hmmm...China has refused to revalue Renimbi despite repeated requests by US to do so in order to address serious trade imbalance.

Hmmm...Fed adopts "low interest rate, cheap dollar policy" beginning in 2004 in order to achieve effective revaluation of Renimbi.

Hmmm...China and other "tiger economies" have now begun to buy Euros vs. Dollars in seeming confirmation of Fed strategy.

Reality, US trade and economic interests are in Western Hemisphere and Asia - not Europe.

Reality, Americans do not wake up every day weeping and gnashing their teeth because Europeans don't like us. In fact, with each and every passing day, Europe becomes less and less relevant to America; particularly as the ever rising tide of new American immigrants arrive from Latin America and Asia, not Europe.

Yes, Roger, simple economics. And perhaps it should begin to dawn on you that America increasingly does not need Europe and will slowly begin to realize it does not care about it either.

Ed Sukach
01-09-2007, 09:20 AM
Hmmm...
Hmmm...
Hmmm...
Hmmm...


Oh, the buzzing of the bees in the cigarette trees ... and the soda water fountains ...


In fact, with each and every passing day, Europe becomes less and less relevant to America; particularly as the ever rising tide of new American immigrants arrive from Latin America and Asia, not Europe.
Yes, Roger, simple economics. And perhaps it should begin to dawn on you that America increasingly does not need Europe and will slowly begin to realize it does not care about it either.
Interesting point of view.

I can't help but wondering, though ... Is there some sort of attempt to combat perceived "United States Bashing" by "Europe Bashing"? I think I may just go into the Real Estate business - leasing patches of sand for the requisite head burials.

This implies and interesting Global Relations Philosophy .. "Hooray for everyone who will make money for ME, while I ignore the hell out of everyone else."

Nothing like brittle isolationism - nothing at all.

JBrunner
01-09-2007, 09:30 AM
A direct, on-the-record quote from Ilford, just after the management buy-out succeeded, concerning their strategy before bankruptcy:

"We bet the farm on digital, and we very nearly won."

This is of course a reference to the way they treated silver as a cash cow to fund inkjet paper development. Understandably, they never gave me the exact figures, but equally, they didn't argue when I suggested (under the old regime) that silver provided 120-150 per cent of their profits.

Cheers,

R.


Hi Roger,

This is interesting, but I don't understand the percentages.
Isn't more than 100% a mathematical impossibility?

Regardless, it does sound something like the behavior of a larger, more yellow company of late.

Roger Hicks
01-09-2007, 09:58 AM
Hi Roger,

This is interesting, but I don't understand the percentages.
Isn't more than 100% a mathematical impossibility?

Regardless, it does sound something like the behavior of a larger, more yellow company of late.

Nope.

The pre-digital profits (i.e. before deducting the losses incurred by digital) were well over 100 per cent of the actual profit after deducting those losses.

Cheers,

R.

dphill
01-09-2007, 10:47 AM
I HAVE to take pictures on silver and print on silver. I am not an "Artist", however I may be a dilettante elitist, and I am not wealthy by most U.S.A. standards, but, my Muse demands an analog work flow. So I am willing to pay the price.
I have wasted too much time and money with the digital work flow to learn that fact. Some people can use it, I can't.
Ilford has proven to me that they are worth the time and money spent on their products. They have pissed me off in the past and they probably will in the future. (not much chance of a true matte warmtone in fiber I suppose).
None the less, this increase in price is the wave of the future. Inflation, oil prices and interest rates are the cause and the only way prices will go down is by way of a depression. Imagine, a box of 11x14 fp4+ for a dollar! Of course you will only be bringing home a dollar a day, if you're lucky.

So, you think you can do a better job at running Ilford? Buy it and lets find out!

Dan

Take pictures, not prisoners

Platinumprinter
01-09-2007, 10:55 AM
Rodger,

???????????

Are you talking about the difference between gross sales and net profit?

John Roseborough

Roger Hicks
01-09-2007, 11:00 AM
Hmmm...Dollar slide vs. Euro began in 2004. "W" was unelected in 2000. US had strong dollar policy for four years after "W" took office.

Hmmm...Current dollar price of a barrel of oil is around $55 (not $75 which was the peak price last Summer).

Hmmm...Fed Reserve sets interest rate policy which directly influences dollar trading value - not W.

Hmmm...Single largest US trading partner has been for many years and remains Canada. So relative trading value of USD$ vs. CDN$ much more relevant than Euro.

Hmmm...Other largest trading partners for finished goods (oil, as a commodity. is multi-sourced) are Japan and China both of whom have huge trade surpluses with US.

Hmmm...China has refused to revalue Renimbi despite repeated requests by US to do so in order to address serious trade imbalance.

Hmmm...Fed adopts "low interest rate, cheap dollar policy" beginning in 2004 in order to achieve effective revaluation of Renimbi.

Hmmm...China and other "tiger economies" have now begun to buy Euros vs. Dollars in seeming confirmation of Fed strategy.

Reality, US trade and economic interests are in Western Hemisphere and Asia - not Europe.

Reality, Americans do not wake up every day weeping and gnashing their teeth because Europeans don't like us. In fact, with each and every passing day, Europe becomes less and less relevant to America; particularly as the ever rising tide of new American immigrants arrive from Latin America and Asia, not Europe.

Yes, Roger, simple economics. And perhaps it should begin to dawn on you that America increasingly does not need Europe and will slowly begin to realize it does not care about it either.


Well, the last sentiment is simply pitiful, but just to prove that I DO read what you write,

Dollar slide, figures for January and July each year: '01, $0.94 and $0.96 -- '02, $0.88 and $1.01 -- '03, $1.06 and $1.13 -- '04, $1.26 and $1.22 -- '05, $1.31 and $1.20-- '06, $1.21 and $1.27

Now, I may have gotten the numbers slightly wrong, overestimating the maximum strength of the euro (which I recalled at $0.90, or $0.95 +/- 5 cents), though I got the dollar more or less right (it dipped below $1.35 to the euro on Christmas Eve). You, on the other hand, appear to have forgotten when Dubbya came to power.

Yes, I'm perfectly prepared to believe that oil is currently $55 a barrel -- or 42 euros. This doesn't affect the argument about exchange rates.

Did I ever say Dubbya set the exchange rate? No, I said it was a date we could all remember. As the numbers above indicate, it correlates very well with the fall of the dollar, and you may draw your own conclusions about this.

As a point of information, no-one 'sets' exchange rates any more for hard currencies (that's one of the definitions of a hard currency). Yes, the Fed sets interest rates -- but next to economic performance and a stable economy, interest rates don't matter much.

'Fed strategy' -- Yes, of course they need to encourage people to denominate in euros, as you say, to diminish the incredible trade deficit with a vicious, genocidal, imperialist communist regime propped up by greedy Western powers (NOTE GEORGE -- ALL greedy Western powers not just USA, which I will repeat because you'll probably miss it otherwise, NOT JUST USA). Hence the ever-weakening dollar.

If oil is redenominated in euros then the USA will REALLY feel the draught. My own belief is that there is a good chance that this will happen within a decade, after which the euro will quite shortly take over from the dollar as the reserve currency, just as the dollar took over from sterling. The dollar will then weaken just as sterling did: $4.03 to $2.80 in 1949 (roughly 30 per cent again -- seems to be a magic number). How do you fancy a $6500 Leica?

No, the vast majority of Americans don't weep and gnash their teeth over these things -- mostly, as the figures and arguments above demonstrate, because too many of them are ignorant of either the facts or the likely consequences of those facts. Most of the ones who do understand a bit about economics, globalization and interdependence are worried. This includes the Fed...

My apologies to anyone who thinks this is unduly political, but as I say, I'm trying to explain WHY things cost more if they are made in Europe or indeed Japan) and bought with US dollars. THIS IS NOT AMERICA BASHING; it is an argument based on the historical facts of exchange rates and reserve currencies.

Sure, the US can live without Europe, if they don't want to buy Leica cameras, Ilford film, German cars, French and Italian fashions, French wine, and so forth. In fact, if the dollar declines another 30 per cent, as postulated above, they won't be able to afford a lot of this stuff even if they wanted it.

No doubt there some rednecks who would be happy to see this happen; but what the rednecks don't realize is that if the US doesn't buy anything from Europe, there is nothing at all to stop Europeans putting up trade barriers to block US imports -- which are hardly numerous, as the EU could buy most 'American' manufactured goods straight from China or the other countries to which the USA has sub-contracted its manufacturing.

The rest of the world is not quite so ready to write Europe off, so the US would be isolated, with a declining and increasingly irrelevant currency, unable to afford imports, reduced to selling raw materials and commodities, with a labour force that would rather work overseas -- which is pretty much the definition of a third world country.

NOTE AGAIN GEORGE -- I am not saying that the USA IS a third world country, or even that it will become one. Nor am I saying for one moment that I want it to become one, though I am sure you will not believe me when I say that. What I am saying is that this is not an impossible scenario. It is an unlikely scenario, because the Fed aren't fools -- but give the rednecks their head, and it could happen.

The UK fell pretty low: in the early 1980s, the pound sterling was within a nickel or less of parity. Yesterday, it stood at $1.92, down from $1.95 and above the previous week. Having seen what happens when exchange rates go against you, in the real world, makes it hard for me to ignore them.

Cheers,

R.

Roger Hicks
01-09-2007, 11:06 AM
Rodger,

???????????

Are you talking about the difference between gross sales and net profit?

John Roseborough

Dear John,

Not exactly. From an accounting viewpoint, imagine Ilford as the two separate companies it has become, silver and inkjet (and, to be fair, Cibachrome-as-was). One made a profit; the other, a loss. Add the two together, and the silver company's profits are (let us say) 150 per cent of the united company's profits.

Though actually, it was more of a rhetorical device (and one that is easily understood, I'd have thought) than an accounting statement. You could rephrase it as 'If they hadn't spent all that money on inkjet, their profits would have been 50 per cent higher'. Or, as I put it, 150 per cent of their profits...

Cheers,

Roger (no 'd')

Simon R Galley
01-09-2007, 11:32 AM
Dear All,

Nobody likes putting up prices, but a couple of points I think do need stating.

1) This is not our second price in a Year, we put our prices up one year ago.

2) We have resisted a further increase during 2006, when indeed most of our competitors raised prices stating the rise in silver ( true enough, $ 6 to $ 7 a troy ounce at the start of 2006 its currently $ 12 a troy ounce )

3) Our costs do, and have risen, especially raw materials, energy and wage costs.

4) We are a privately owned company, the six directors who actually work in the business, own the business, we have no external shareholders.

5) The USA is our biggest market the exchange rate $ to makes big differences to our profitability. The dollar has weakened.

We have always stated that we have to run a viable business FOR THE LONG TERM and therefore in what is still a declining analog silver market we will inevitably have to adjust our pricing at certain times.

Thank you to all who buy and value our products.

Simon ILFORD photo / HARMAN technology Limited.

Tom Kershaw
01-09-2007, 11:45 AM
Simon,

Thanks to you to. Please keep making the product, and lets hope the market will stop declining.

Tom.

Petzi
01-09-2007, 12:10 PM
Please keep making the product, and lets hope the market will stop declining.

At least the decline is slowing down!

FrankB
01-09-2007, 02:59 PM
So, you think you can do a better job at running Ilford? Buy it and lets find out!

My thoughts exactly.


We have always stated that we have to run a viable business FOR THE LONG TERM and therefore in what is still a declining analog silver market we will inevitably have to adjust our pricing at certain times.

Here's hoping its for the VERY long term!


Thank you to all who buy and value our products.

Thanks for making such good ones. Keep doing that and I'll keep buying them.

Pop down to the UK Gathering at Symonds Yat towards the end of April, Simon (details at the top of the page on this link - http://www.apug.org/forums/forum137/33305-apug-uk-spring-2007-gathering-12.html). I'd very much like the opportunity to buy you a pint!