Research Paper: Kodak in the 1990s

Pages: 10 (3074 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 3  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Film  ·  Buy This Paper

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[. . .] Dish Network hopes to keep the stores running along with providing more efficient means of service to the people. The Network believes that with Blockbuster under its hold, Dish network will become more efficient in streaming videos online. ("Blockbuster Deal Dish Network," 2011, p. 1) Along with Blockbuster, Dish Network also bought satellite provider DBSD North America.

Many people think that with the increasing use of digital movies and videos, Blockbuster should have seen this coming. The company should have seen what was going to happen and thus they should have altered their model early on.

Thus, this shows that companies need to be aware of their surroundings at all times. They need to be aware of what changes are to come or how the world and needs of people will change over time. Companies like Kodak and Blockbuster surely have a lot of skilled employees and researchers. If they were given the time and the outlook for change, they could have come up with ways to make the company more fit for the digital age.

Netflix

With the advent of internet-based movie rental firms, stores like Blockbuster began going out of business. Blockbuster lost about 1.1 billion dollars in the year 2008 mainly due to the switch towards online movie rental firms. Netflix is one of the firms which has grown and prospered in the same years that Blockbuster experienced its downfall. The company has grown to about eight million customers in just ten years. (Chao et.al, 2010) It basically offers a user friendly website that allows the customer to look for any movie they want. They can search by title of type and then add the movie to their own list. With Netflix, there is no hassle of due dates, late fees and all the movies are basically shipped the next day. (Netflix, 2009)

Just recently, the company declared that it would add a video streaming only option for the subscribers. This would thus make it the largest movie rental service in the United States. (Chao et.al, 2010) The video that they offer is of top quality and is compressed in a good format so that the customer is able to view it without a problem. The fourth quarter profit augment about 45% as the customer base grew more than what the firm expected in 2009. In 2010, there was an addition of six million customers in just the first six weeks. This was due to the expanded video streaming offer and the DVD-rental service that the firm has provided. (Chao et.al, 2010)

The transition from blockbuster to Netflix was quite obvious and predicable. Everyone goes for readily made stuff available right at home. Karie Bible, who is the box office analyst for Exhibitor Relations, states that she doesn't know anyone who doesn't have Netflix. (Wood, 2010) It is something that has specialized and has gone on to cater the needs of all different kinds of people. The Netflix kiosks are available in grocery stores and malls thus the customers don't need to travel an extra mile mainly to rent a movie. Most of the movie updates and previews are accessible either online or through the television. Therefore, the need for having all new movies lined up in front of you is not necessary. All the information, ratings and reviews are also attainable on the Netflix websites.

The company offers higher convenience and efficacy as well. No one would get disappointed or find out that their movie is 'sold out' if they go to Netflix. (Wood, 2010) downloads via Netflix have been made available on phones and iPads. All of this basically adds on to the convenience and thus distracts people away from stores like Blockbuster.

Good news for Fujifilm

Many companies seem to be doing well after having Kodak out of the race. Surprisingly enough, Fujifilm being from the same background is managing and thriving really well. Both the firms had somewhat of a monopoly when they were popular. Where Kodak became the camera and photo expert in America, Fujifilm ruled over Japan. Where Kodak has lagged behind in the race to survive, Fujifilm has now become a solid and profitable business.

Even though, both the firms knew what they were in, Fujifilm was quicker to recognize and quicker to adapt as well. It saw that digitalization would take over by the 1990s and early 200. Thus, the strategy that his company embarked on was to make as much money out of the film business, switch to digital business and then produce new business lines. It didn't keep clinging on to old ideas like films and neither did it waste time in perfecting a product and then launching it.

Where both companies: Kodak and Fuji knew they were destined for doom, Fuji was the one to quickly shift their focus to other items. Fujifilm diversified itself in a much more successful manner. Even though this was something quite opposite from films in cameras, Fuji film decided to go for a cosmetic line. This cosmetic line basically had anti-oxidants in them that are also present in films as well. Thus, the company made use of all the stores of anti-oxidants in their library and launched the line of cosmetics known as Astalift. This brand got popular in Asia and is also being used all around Europe as well. Apart from this new line, Fujifilm went on to try the skills that it had in film making as well.

The company tried to produce optical films for LCD flat panel screens. They invested a good amount and attained a decent profit on it as well. The profits that Fujifilm made out of Kodak's failure will be discussed in more detail. As it is discussed in the earlier examples, Fujifilm was the company to diversify rather quickly. The products that it came with such as the Astalift and the optical films did make profit. The profits not only saved the company from doom but covered and made up for the losses it has incurred earlier before. Another way through which Fujifilm managed to remain in the market was that its good leadership and good planning.

Similar to Kodak, there was a power struggle that took place in Fujifilm as well. ( The Economist, 2012) Nonetheless, despite many changes, the eventual leader was Shigetaka Komori who put the firm right back on track. Mr. Komori set out an intense remodeling and restructuring scheme. He went out to fire people and cut down the costs. In just 18 months time, he made sure that the company got rid of extra costs, development labels, mangers and researchers that were not required anymore. Komori says that even though, it was a painful experience, it had to be done. The entire cost that was cut down was about 2.5 billion dollars. (Inagaki and Osawa, 2012) This cost was taken out from totally eliminating the photographic film business.

With the cost cut back and increased amount of cash within the company, the plans that Komori had for Fujifilm could be taken successfully. Many say that where Kodak was functioning in a very non-American way and was not open to change, Fujifilm was. Another major tactic used by Komori and Fujifilm was that it didn't waste time or revenue in trying to make technologies in house. The company focused on purchasing readymade businesses. Even though, the company did not diversify much, it did not have more failed ventures like Kodak did.

Komori said that the company did have the resources and the money with them, however, they used that to transform the business. (Inagaki and Osawa, 2012) According to Komori, it was crucial to make these changes before the age of digitalization took over. Even though, the new endeavors were nothing compared to the popular film making Fujifilm once used to be, its choice of going to newer products helped the company thrive to this day. (Inagaki and Osawa, 2012)

All in all, it should be seen that corporate world can be complicated. Where one company goes in loss, the other can make the most of that loss. Kodak as a company has come down a long way. Since 2003, there has been a total closure of thirteen manufacturing plans and 130 processing labs. ("KODAK MOMENTS FROM GOING," 2012, p. 6) Even though, the company has hoped to divert its attention to other ventures, the profitability is not what it used to be. Even though, the mistakes made could have been reversed, it is not only discouraging but disappointing to see such a flourishing company almost bankrupt today. Despite the mistakes and failed attempts, Kodak still is hoping to take on new plans that would further boost the company up.

References

Chao, C., Mockler R.J., & Gartenfeld, M. Movies: Download Vs. Rental. Review of Business Research. 2010. 10.

Flanigan, J. Kodak- American Institution Becoming American Tragedy? The Journal Record. September 6th, 2003.

Inagaki, K. And Osawa,… [END OF PREVIEW]

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