Seems like they're having a problem with financing a repair, because they cannot sell their product at enough profit to account for things like machine repair.
Man, if I was independently wealthy I'd buy that factory, if only to help the product hang on for a little bit longer.
"Often moments come looking for us". - Robert Frank
"Make good art!" - Neil Gaiman
"...the heart and mind are the true lens of the camera". - Yousuf Karsh
According to Mirko's Post Efke still makes millions but is supposedly unable to do a repair that costs less than a car. Weird
Just like Thomas said if I had the money I would buy Efke in a New York minute
I like the look of Efke films, but I also like Ilford Pan F. I have recently bought five rolls each of Efke 25 and 50 in small format, but will learn to use Pan F in this format too. I see no reason to buy and freeze more rolls of Efke now, if they maybe will continue to be produced in Germany, and I also want to support Ilford.
Originally Posted by summicron1
I will greatly miss Efke in sheet film and 127, if the emulsions go away. FOMA is still available, but they don't have any low speed films nor 127.
FOMA 100? It's cheap and probably of better quality than Shanghai.
Originally Posted by darkroom_rookie
I just got 2 rolls of Efke 50 from Freestyle, and if I like it, I'll be getting 2 bricks. I just don't go through film that fast, and 2 bricks of 50 will last me a long time. I am also going to be getting a brick of the IR820.
I really hope they stay in business and continue to produce film, they are the only producer of IR film.
Sales or Profits??
Well, it is hard to say what repairs are necessary. I suspect that the repairs are probably a bit more difficult than repairing a car. Being able to reliably apply a very thin level of coating on a running sheet of plastic is likely a bit more precise than running down the highway. If the machinery is old enough that metal fatigue is beginning to set in, and you no longer have the ability to create the needed pieces, then it becomes a whole lot more challenging, and expensive. Very often companies with extremely old equipment will use parts from other, scrapped, equipment as a source of parts. But, obviously, that will only work for so long until the scrapped machines are totally stripped. And I suspect the film coating machines are not found in every scrap yard.
Originally Posted by MDR
Finally, take it from a former business owner. "Making millions" in sales is not the same thing as "making millions" in profits. Not even close.
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Ah yes, making millions!
The support must be purchased in bulk as must the chemicals. All 3 things, paper, film and chemicals are very very expensive and custom for the photo industry. And, for these products you must stock different varieties as for example, for film you may need 6 kinds of film support and for paper, one kind for each surface and tone.
That eats up profit.
What we don't know is this: does the company have a profitability problem or a cash problem - the two are different. A business can be profitable, but have no cash - and that's a big problem. Many a profitable company has been sunk as a result of poor cash flow.
Whilst we don't know too much about the situation, it does sound like they make profit, but struggle for cash - all that upfront cost of materials PE is referring to. But this is normal in lots of businesses - the best example is manufacture of Whisky. You invest in the plant, labour, ingredients and materials to make the stuff, and then you have to wait 5-10 years before you can sell it as anything respectable. It might sell at a fantastic profit - but only if you have the cash to get to that point in time.
There are ways of improving cashflow - let's hope they find one!
PE and Pioneer unfortunately you seem to be right their profit margin must be very very low if they can't afford a < 10 000 repair.
You have to remember that many of the ingredients used for emulsion making are perishable. In addition, the end product is perishable too. Unlike whiskey which gets better with age, film goes bad like meat!
The problem is profitability. Anyones problem at current prices for silver halide products is profitability if you are a manufacturer.
All the films and papers out there are sold at very low prices considering the effort it takes to make them and the costs involved on the raw material side.
This is because the production capacities exceed the demand by far. So the remaining players compete heavily against each other and the consumers benefit from this situation on the cost of the manufacturers.
If efke was to invest in the repair of their gear now (which they could do, they have cash) the question arising is: will they ever get this money back from sales?
Their opinion on this is: No!
So they made a decision.
This is a very sad moment for us. We have started our business 20 years ago with the importing of efke into the western world and we will loose one of our main suppliers. Our sales of their products have gone up every year constantly reaching a record turnover this year.
When I have recovered from this shock in a few days the question will be how these products can possibly be replaced.
But don´t ask me tonight.
Last edited by ADOX Fotoimpex; 08-21-2012 at 06:33 PM. Click to view previous post history.