Quaker oats acquires Snapple and ends up losing $1.6 million per day

Quaker oats acquires Snapple and ends up losing $1.6 million per day

  Quaker Oats was founded in 1901 when four oat mills merged to form a larger entity. Over the subsequent years the company expanded into numerous other areas of business such as acquiring other breakfast cereals, food and drink products and even into completely unrelated fields such as children’s toys. The company bought Stokely-Van Camp,…

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News Corps oversees the demise of Myspace

News Corps oversees the demise of Myspace

  Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation acquired Myspace in July 2005 for $580 million. Myspace was the largest social networking site in the world at the time and by June 2006 it had overtaken Google as the most visited website in the United States. At its peak in 2007, Myspace was valued at $12 billion but…

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Daimler Chrysler merger fails due to cultural differences

Daimler Chrysler merger fails due to cultural differences

  Back in May 1998, the top brass at car giants Daimler-Benz and Chrysler announced the biggest cross-border merger in industrial history. The rationale at the time was quite clear. Chrysler languishing in third place in the Detroit Big Three, was struggling to maintain its productivity and world standing.  The more prestigious Daimler Benz on…

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Kodak invents the digital camera but doesn’t recognise its true potential

Kodak invents the digital camera but doesn’t recognise its true potential

On September 4, 1888 George Eastman and Henry A. Strong founded Eastman Kodak. The company held a dominant position in the photographic film industry throughout most of the 20th century and their ubiquity was such that their “Kodak moment” tagline became a popular figure of speech to describe a personal event that demanded to be…

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Napoleon Bonaparte sells half the US for $15 million in the Louisiana Purchase

Napoleon Bonaparte sells half the US for $15 million in the Louisiana Purchase

  U.S. representatives agreed to pay $15 million to the French government for 828,000 square miles of land that stretched from the Mississippi River to the Rocky Mountains and from the Gulf of Mexico to Canada on April 30th, 1803. The deal, which has come to be known as the Louisiana Purchase, almost doubled the…

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Blockbuster passes on the chance to buy Netflix and ends up going bankrupt

Blockbuster passes on the chance to buy Netflix and ends up going bankrupt

  Blockbuster was a retailer of home movie and video game rental services. At its peak back in 2004, the company consisted of approximately 60,000 employees and 9,000 stores that generated revenues of $5.9 billion.   Back in the year 2000 Reed Hastings, the founder of Netflix, approached former Blockbuster CEO John Antioco and asked…

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Xerox invents personal computer technology and gives it away for nothing

Xerox invents personal computer technology and gives it away for nothing

  Back in 1979, a twenty-four-year-old Steve Jobs paid a visit to a research facility in Silicon Valley known as Xerox parc. He was the co-founder of a small computer start up down the road in Cupertino named Apple Computers.   Xerox Parc was the research and development arm of the Xerox Corporation. It was,…

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Former bookstore giant Borders fails to modernise and ends up going bankrupt

Former bookstore giant Borders fails to modernise and ends up going bankrupt

  Borders Group, Inc. was an international book and music retailer that was based in Ann Arbor, Michigan.   In its final year of trading the company employed nearly 20,000 people throughout the U.S. In February 2011 the company applied for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection and began liquidating 226 of its stores in the United…

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Ford Edsel – the most catastrophic failure in automotive history

Ford Edsel – the most catastrophic failure in automotive history

  The Ford Edsel is widely known to be the biggest failure in the history of the car industry.   After initially forecasting trade figures of over 200,000 units per year, everything soon went catastrophically wrong for the previously untouchable car manufacturer. The Edsel arrived back in 1957 after arguably the most elaborate pre-release marketing…

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JC Penney abandons holding regular sales and in turn alienates its customers

JC Penney abandons holding regular sales and in turn alienates its customers

  Former Apple executive Ron Johnson became CEO of US department store JC Penney back in 2011.  The company’s demise since then has been characterised by ongoing sluggish sales growth and store closings that have made the company a shadow of its once great self.   JC Penney’s demise began when they changed the company’s…

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