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  1. #61

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    Quote Originally Posted by PHOTOTONE View Post
    I truly do not think this is true. Most camera stores have purchased directly from Kodak, or a jobber..film intended for USA consumption. (if in the USA). It is only the large mail-order vendors such as B&H that have offered "grey market" product. Starting a "direct to Kodak" lab account is different from a retail store account for materials. Kodak may have a first time minimum order to establish an account, but I can almost guarantee you that once established you can order much smaller quantities. I remember years ago, if a photo lab (not retail store) wanted to purchase materials direct from Kodak, they had to have a certain volume of requirements to be able to do it...but that is a lab, not a store selling merchandise. I know the local (to me) camera store, which is a regional chain can special order one box of sheet film, or a brick of 35mm or roll film (20 rolls).
    I have not found made in the USA Tri-X in 35mm or 120 at any Boston-area or Washington-D.C. area camera store - except for Calumet Photographci - since late 2003. Not even good-sized chains like Hunt Photo and Video in Boston or Penn Camera in D.C. In the past 12 months I haven't done any real retail buying, so this may have changed again. But I noticed the 400TX on sale at my local Best Buy, recently, was not made in the USA.

    I can't put this phenomenon in the context of the alleged order minimums. I am unsure as to whether the minimums exist, I'm just offering a possible consequence.

  2. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by jd callow View Post
    Is there anyone out there that has documents that clearly state what Kodak's policies are with regard to retail outlets and professional film? I will happily organize an email campaign, but it won't do much good if we are ignorant of the facts.
    Not sure if I can get anything on paper, but the guy I deal with at the Camera Store confimed that the minimum order at one time is 1000 rolls. Can be mixed types, but has to be 1000 rolls. This is ordering direct from Kodak Canada.

    He estimates that they now sell 10-15 rolls of film a day (of all kinds), whereas ten years ago it was easilly 200. His comment was "we don't see our pros anymore, they used to come in for 50 rolls for a shoot every other day, now we only see them when they need another memory card"

  3. #63

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    Quote Originally Posted by boyooso View Post
    When my lab tried to get an account with Kodak they wanted a firm $25K commitment and wanted to see company financials... just to buy their products, not even looking for credit.
    Do you know this for a fact? What do you mean by "my lab"? Your employer? Or the lab where you have your work done?

    Requesting financials and a minimum is a contract and it does not necessarily have anything to do with buying on credit.

    I find no issue with Kodak changing their distribution model or terms. They are, after all, trying to reduce expenses. The cost of running direct distribution for smaller customers can be significant.

    And minimums are to be expected when you deal directly with a manufacturer. Some large manufacturers do no sales directly, but sell only through distribution channels. So I actually find the fact that Kodak still sells analog products direct to be somewhat surprising, especially in light of diminished sales of those products.

    A lot of people here seem pretty naive about basic business practices, not to mention the realities of the shift to digital. Buying the materials of your choice and making good photos is a lot better than whining and speculating on speculative rumours.
    Honey, I promise no more searching eBay for cameras.

  4. #64
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    Kodak used to be its own distributor. If you were interested in selling Kodak products, it was relatively easy to become a "dealer", in which case you would get a large amount of support.

    If you were a fairly successful dealer, you would get the very best prices from Kodak. The volumes necessary for "best" pricing weren't inconsequential, but they were certainly achievable for a store (or chain) that promoted the product.

    Kodak's costs then were probably high, but I expect they didn't even come close to what they would be now if they still used the same business model.

    They are clearly attempting to move to a model where most retailers would need to buy through distributors. This probably makes a lot of sense, because I expect most of the retailers (other than the very largest) currently buy most of their inventory through distributors.

    Our angst with this issue may be misplaced. It may be that we should be encouraging the evolution of better distributors.

    Would J & C be better as a distributor than as a direct marketer? Who knows, but that may be an example of a potential solution.

    I still think that a combination of an internet based marketer with small, flexible storefronts with limited inventory commitments might work.

    Matt

  5. #65
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    Quote Originally Posted by Earl Dunbar View Post
    A lot of people here seem pretty naive about basic business practices, not to mention the realities of the shift to digital.
    Ironicaly they also seem to think they know how to run a multi-billion dollar multi-national company named Kodak. It's too funny to read sometimes.

    Then again, I have couch potato buddies who think they can rmanage their favourite, but losing, football team too. I guess it's human nature.

    Regards, Art.
    Visit my website at www.ArtLiem.com
    or my online portfolios at APUG and ModelMayhem

  6. #66

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    Quote Originally Posted by aldevo View Post
    I have not found made in the USA Tri-X in 35mm or 120 at any Boston-area or Washington-D.C. area camera store - except for Calumet Photographci - since late 2003. Not even good-sized chains like Hunt Photo and Video in Boston or Penn Camera in D.C. In the past 12 months I haven't done any real retail buying, so this may have changed again. But I noticed the 400TX on sale at my local Best Buy, recently, was not made in the USA.
    Odd, since nowadays Kodak only has coating facilities in the United States. There is no way Kodak can coat any type of film other than in the USA, however it seems ALL Kodak films (in 35mm) are finished in Mexico..that is cut and loaded into cassettes. Is that what you are seeing? That is not Grey Market.

  7. #67

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    People still buy products from the Yellow Godfather?

    How many years of getting screwed, ignored and having the rug pulled out from under you does it take for some photographers to get the message that the Yellow Peril does not care a damn about you at all?

    May they all get the heartbreak of psoriasis!

  8. #68

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    Quote Originally Posted by WarEaglemtn View Post
    People still buy products from the Yellow Godfather?

    How many years of getting screwed, ignored and having the rug pulled out from under you does it take for some photographers to get the message that the Yellow Peril does not care a damn about you at all?

    May they all get the heartbreak of psoriasis!
    YOU BET I STILL DO!! How else can I get my 4x5 E-6 Ektachrome E-6 in 50 sheet boxes I go thru so quicklly. And my chemistry. I have shot 150 sheets of 4x5 Ektachrome this last week. I need Kodak as long as they can provide.

  9. #69

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    Quote Originally Posted by PHOTOTONE View Post
    Odd, since nowadays Kodak only has coating facilities in the United States. There is no way Kodak can coat any type of film other than in the USA, however it seems ALL Kodak films (in 35mm) are finished in Mexico..that is cut and loaded into cassettes. Is that what you are seeing? That is not Grey Market.
    Agreed. But much of the film I saw at Best Buy was made in the UK and was dated March or April 2008. This is Grey Market but the date implies it was produced about 18 months ago (or thereabouts) if my recollection of Kodak dating is accurate.

    And, yes, I have begun to see film inventory finished in Mexico.

    It's often a bit of a mystery as to where Kodak products are coated. Even when the B&W paper coating had moved to Brazil, Polycontrast IV packages were labeld with "Finsihed in the USA" or "Finished in Cadada". And I expect this is where the product was cut and packaged.

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