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  1. #31
    cmacd123's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Fisher View Post
    I'd guess that Fuji nor Ilford have gelatin divisions.
    I have a copy of the 100th anaversersy issue of "Kodak Studio Light" which has a listing of the core Kodak Principles. one of them is to "control an alternative"...

    Story goes that in the early days Kodak all of a sudden could not make film in rochester, every batch was a failure. Eastman himself took a small crew to London with sample of all their supplies and made sample batches there. after testing they discovered that the Gelatin was the problem. Some cows had switched to a different feed and there was a different mix of trace chemicals.

    The answer was better refining and Eastman bought TWO factories that could make the stuff. Eastman Gelatin being one. and I think the other was in the midwest

    George Eastman would have never set it up that all the film was made in one building, even if the volumes dropped as much as they have. (or course he would have also grabbed the digital bull by the horns and made sure that the company never let Canon and Nikon have a chance at the mass market. I recall the sales blurb on my EK-6 Instant camera mentioned that Kodak made the special chips for that.) he would have work very hard to only leave his competitors the middle market.
    Charles MacDonald
    aa508@ncf.ca
    I still live just beyond the fringe in Stittsville

  2. #32

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    They may well thrive out of under the shadow of Kodak's management. See this article, which discusses how Eastman Chemical has changed from a fat lazy Kodak subsidiary to a well-managed thriving globally competitive company.

    Kodak's near-monopoly status in the film business, and the resultant high profit margins, allowed bad business management to thrive undetected. Digital photography was only one of the Kodak innovations that had no return on investment. They dropped many fine business lines because they weren't as high-margin as film.

  3. #33
    Ektagraphic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cmacd123 View Post
    Not as current but this article on Reuters will be somewhat interesting..

    As Kodak struggles, Eastman Chemical thrives

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/...+International
    I'm sure that it's not D-76 and Dektol that are keeping the chemical business up.
    Helping to save analog photography one exposure at a time

  4. #34
    MattKing's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ektagraphic View Post
    I'm sure that it's not D-76 and Dektol that are keeping the chemical business up.
    Eastman Chemicals made and make chemicals - not photographic chemistry.

    Eastman Kodak sold its photographic chemistry business a couple of years ago - the purchasers (Champion? ) also purchased a licence to use the Kodak name on the former Kodak products they manufacture
    Matt

    “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

  5. #35
    Stuggi's Avatar
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    That's the problem when you have a business that's a global leader in a certain field, small parts of the business that are not part of the core-business start to look unattractive since the profits are so small compared to the core-business, not maybe in a sense of return on investment, but in dollar amounts. This then leads to either two things, selling out the "unprofitable" part, or keeping it and usually neglecting it. Then, when the core-business looses ground, the increased overhead from the big company's bloated management structure eats up the "unprofitable" side business profits, resulting in a sell out. What should have been done in the first place is restructuring the side business as a separate company, so it can function completely separate from the owners, and so that the bookkeeping actually shows how profitable it is, when the parent company's overhead is removed from the equation.
    Canon F1n / FTb / AE-1P | Yashica Mat-124G | Hasselblad 500C/M | Leica IIIf

  6. #36

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    Quote Originally Posted by John Shriver View Post
    Kodak's near-monopoly status in the film business, and the resultant high profit margins, allowed bad business management to thrive undetected.
    What an incredible story it would make.. the APS and disc debacles, unbridled employee benefits, the culture Kodak created. Either an insider would have to pen it, or a well-known biographer relevant players would be willing to talk to (thinking of Ron Chernow here though of course there are many others).

  7. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stuggi View Post
    That's the problem when you have a business that's a global leader in a certain field, small parts of the business that are not part of the core-business start to look unattractive since the profits are so small compared to the core-business...
    Proctor and Gamble, who is headquartered in my adopted home town, has spent the last 10 years slowly selling off or discontinuing it's 'second tier' brands and any products that didn't bring in $1 billion (thousand million, for those outside the US) per year and trimming its market to a few core categories. Well, then the crash of 2007 hit and they found consumers were abandoning their upper tier products and buying from competitors. So now they are re-introducing some second tier items...

    Alas, I don't expect the same from Kodak.

    Ed
    Last edited by Neanderman; 12-27-2011 at 02:44 PM. Click to view previous post history. Reason: spelling
    "I only wanted Uncle Vern standing by his new car (a Hudson) on a clear day. I got him and the car. I also got a bit of Aunt Mary's laundry, and Beau Jack, the dog, peeing on a fence, and a row of potted tuberous begonias on the porch and 78 trees and a million pebbles in the driveway and more. It's a generous medium, photography." -- Lee Friedlander

  8. #38
    Neanderman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MattKing View Post
    Eastman Kodak sold its photographic chemistry business a couple of years ago - the purchasers (Champion? ) also purchased a licence to use the Kodak name on the former Kodak products they manufacture
    2006 - www.championphotochemistry.com/milestones.php
    "I only wanted Uncle Vern standing by his new car (a Hudson) on a clear day. I got him and the car. I also got a bit of Aunt Mary's laundry, and Beau Jack, the dog, peeing on a fence, and a row of potted tuberous begonias on the porch and 78 trees and a million pebbles in the driveway and more. It's a generous medium, photography." -- Lee Friedlander

  9. #39
    David A. Goldfarb's Avatar
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    Threads merged.
    flickr--http://www.flickr.com/photos/davidagoldfarb/
    Photography (not as up to date as the flickr site)--http://www.davidagoldfarb.com/photo
    Academic (Slavic and Comparative Literature)--http://www.davidagoldfarb.com

  10. #40
    cmacd123's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stuggi View Post
    small parts of the business that are not part of the core-business start to look unattractive since the profits are so small compared to the core-business, not maybe in a sense of return on investment, ..... keeping it and usually neglecting it. Then, when the core-business looses ground, the increased overhead from the big company's bloated management structure.
    I think you are really seeing what is sometimes called the Conglomerate Effect or Conglomerate discount. Big companies are much harder to manage than folks think, ITT at one time owned both Wonder Bread and Sheraton Hotels, as well as Military suppliers, a car rental outfit and a few others. Management thought that if they applied MBA methods that all businesses could be managed by the numbers.

    Someone else mentioned P&G who actually at one time would make several brands of the same products and let them compete with each other so that competitors had an even steeper learning curve. I recall the news a few yaers ago when the folks who make "Jergins" soap took over IVORY on a contact basis including the P&G factory that made it.

    General Electric is sometimes described in the Financial Press as a Bank that happens to make Locomotives and Air Craft Engines. You will find them in the last several issues of teh fotrune 500 under "Diversified Financials"

    Much merger activity is more concerned with the Management having a bigger company to play with so that they can justify a higher paycheque.

    By that standard Kodak actually comes off not looking bad, they were a leader, who paid their staff well and were at the leading edge of the Photography business as shown by the fact that it was their labs who claim fame for inventing the digital cameras. Their size meant that they have not been nimble enough to take advantage of the leadership they had in digital. Of course, as digital was at first very expensive to produce they concentrated their efforts on applications where the immediate trasmission of the image would comand a premium price (Sports Photography and Military/Space Applications)

    A cultural shift were many folks don't make prints of their pictures also has made their consumer business extra tough.
    Charles MacDonald
    aa508@ncf.ca
    I still live just beyond the fringe in Stittsville

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