Is Facit a Failure?


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This slideshow explains why Facit can't be regarded as a failure.

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Is Facit a Failure?

  1. 1. Christian Sandström holds a PhD from ChalmersUniversity of Technology, Sweden. He writes and speaks about disruptive innovation and technological change.
  2. 2. Within only a few years, the Swedish company Facit wentfrom fantastic profits into being close to bankruptcy in the early 1970s.
  3. 3. The shift to electronics was the reason why Facit madethose losses.
  4. 4. Facit’s CEO GunnarEricsson wasnow blamed for the problems at the company.
  5. 5. Should Facit be regarded as a failure?
  6. 6. My answer is NO.
  7. 7. There are threereasons for this:
  8. 8. 1. All manufacturers of mechanicalcalculators got intotrouble in this shift.
  9. 9. Monroe…
  10. 10. Victor…
  11. 11. Burroughs…
  12. 12. Remington Rand…
  13. 13. Olivetti…
  14. 14. Olympia…
  15. 15. Marchant…
  16. 16. 2. Established firms inother industries have with few exceptions suffered greatly in technological shifts from mechanics to electronics.
  17. 17. Typewriters…
  18. 18. When watches became digital, about 1000 Swiss watch manufacturers went out of business in the 70s and 80s.
  19. 19. The music industry
  20. 20. The oldradio industry
  21. 21. Kodak had to fire thousandsand thousands of employees.
  22. 22. Many buildings inRochester, NY, were blown into pieces.
  23. 23. In Munich, Germany, AgfaPhoto was demolished.
  24. 24. Konica left the industry after trying to survive through a merger with Minolta.
  25. 25. Polaroid is also resting in peace.
  26. 26. Hasselblad has been in deep trouble.
  27. 27. And so has Leica.
  28. 28. This can go on forever, I think the point is clear.
  29. 29. 3. Once the calculatorindustry became digital, competition got fierceand ’the great calculator war’ broke out in the 1970s.
  30. 30. The calculators became cheaper, smaller and better at a violent pace...
  31. 31. New models were launched all the time…
  32. 32. In 1969-1972, more than 20 firms entered the industry…
  33. 33. Only a few years later, most of them had left the industry…
  34. 34. Only Sharp, Texas Instruments, Casio and a few others eventually survived…
  35. 35. Thus, if Facit would have survived the shift to electronics, it wasn’t exactly paradise that waited after the revolution...
  36. 36. Summing it up:
  37. 37. Facit can’t be regarded as a failure. All other mechanical calculator companies wentdown, and the same thing has happened in virtually every industry that has beendigitized. Moreover, once the shift happened, competition became so fierce that many electronic companies had to leave the industry.
  38. 38. Photos taken at:Åtvidabergs Bruks och Facit Museum, SwedenÅssa Industri och Bil Museum, Sweden Thank You!
  39. 39. Image attributions
  40. 40. Find out