That is true. Then is it the production process that is so costly that making films on a much smaller scale, for a much smaller market, can't be profitable? Or is the organizational side of downsizing a company with these amounts the real issue? This must be a very uncommon situation you don't learn about in management school, who finds pride in downsizing a company and make it profitable at a size only a few percent of what it once was?
Originally Posted by AgX
There are two aspects involved in downsizing: The sale or closure of whole divisions including the manufacturing part of that division; the downsizing of a plant or machinery.
Further more one can try to gather the market-capacity, eased by competitors falling off, to be served by ones own plant and going on without downsizing.
Last edited by AgX; 01-21-2013 at 10:28 AM. Click to view previous post history.
No doubt there are HUGE costs in downsizing an industrial giant. It's likely the cost of the legacy overheads are the real cost issues. Production of film at the correct scale probably wouldn't be a cost problem. The issue is getting from where you are today to the correct scale when you have the legacy costs consuming all the money.
Then is it the production process that is so costly that making films on a much smaller scale, for a much smaller market, can't be profitable? Or is the organizational side of downsizing a company with these amounts the real issue?
If it is done right, bringing a company back to profitability might be a very rewarding challenge. The upside is that once a company is profitable you may get to try again, if you can develop new products and services that someone wants whether they are in your current market or something else.
who finds pride in downsizing a company and make it profitable at a size only a few percent of what it once was?
All this has happened before, and all this will happen again.
Now if Kodak, Agfa, and others had concentrated on actively competing in a shrinking market, would Ilford have been able to hold their own? Would they be the strong and dynamic company they are today?
I'm actually very surprised if it is 10% of the peak number. At film's peak, sales were of course huge, 10% of that number is still really quite a lot, considering the current obsession with smartphone cameras and the like.
If it's 10% of the peak, that really sounds pretty good.
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General Motors and Ford downsized rather extensively, closing dozens of plants worth billions and billions of dollars. Why can't Kodak shut down their plant and build one to fit the current business?
Automotive sales are on the increase.
Originally Posted by RattyMouse
Film sales have at best plateaued, and may be still on the decline.
New film manufacturing is expensive to design and build.
And shareholders and creditors demand that that money be spent on growing markets, not markets that are either steady or declining.
If Kodak had been privately held, it probably wouldn't be trying to get out of bankruptcy now.
“Photography is a complex and fluid medium, and its many factors are not applied in simple sequence. Rather, the process may be likened to the art of the juggler in keeping many balls in the air at one time!”
Ansel Adams, from the introduction to The Negative - The New Ansel Adams Photography Series / Book 2
GM's market share dropped during their downsizing time. If memory serves GM used to have close to 50% market share in the US around 1980. Today that is less than 20%. Somehow they managed to downsize their operations and continue production.
Originally Posted by MattKing
No one is making any new films. Kodak is just selling their old formulations.
If Kodak downsized properly, they can adjust their facility to be the proper size. According to PE Kodak can produce a years demand of film in one day today. Kodak could easily produce enough to keep sales going while they re-tool their production to the smaller size.
Everyone always comes back with numerous excuses that say can't can't can't. Can't be done. I've never seen a more negative (heh heh) industry than film producing. Why is it ALWAYS can't be done?
It's not really very low in the b&w world, is it? Color film has narrowed drastically, especially E-6 which I think is now down to five options (Provia and Velvia in two speeds each, plus CR200), but it seems to me like we're a bit spoiled for choice in black and white---a little less so since the demise of Efke, to be sure. There are, what, six or seven 400-speed films to choose from? (Two from Kodak, two plus XP2 from Ilford, Fomapan, two from Rollei if you don't count their infrared film.) I can't find a convenient historical catalog to compare to, but have previous generations of photographers really had more options than that at their fingertips?
Originally Posted by RattyMouse
San Diego, CA, USA
The lady of the house has to be a pretty swell sort of person to put up with the annoyance of a photographer.
-The Little Technical Library, _Developing, Printing, And Enlarging_
B & W film is only lacking in the low speed category.
Originally Posted by ntenny