Originally Posted by zoetmb
Furthermore, most large companies, especially conglomerates, operate in a very decentralized way. That's why you have one division suing Apple and another doing big business with them. I've worked for three very large companies and my experience is that each business unit does exactly what's best for them because each has their own P&L. Only occassionally does a directive come from the top overriding those decisions. I've almost always found it harder to deal with internal business units than external companies. I walked into a meeting once to discuss buying product from another business unit for distribution through our own ecommerce site and the first thing they said to me was, "we're not giving you any discount whatsoever." We wound up buying our own product from a third-party distributor because it was less expensive than buying directly from our own business unit. (How's that for synergy?)
Apple's buying what - 40 million panels a year? No one is going to turn that business down, especially in today's poor business climate.
Ha! Your experience reminds me of a company I worked for in the 60s. CEC:
Consolidated Electro-Dynamics Corporation
320 North Sierra Madre Boulevard,
Pasadena, California (no abbreviations allowed, and just 1 hyphenation).
(At the time IBM was named International Business Machines Corporation).
CEC developed the DataTron Computer and sold the rights to Burroughs.
CEC also made very expensive devices like mass spectrometers, precision data tape machines, etc...
Anyway CEC had 12 divisions. Each division sold related components to the other divisions at full price -- and booked them as such. Each division showed a profit -- but overall, the company lost money...
How's that for consolidation?
CEC was eventually purchased by Bell & Howell.
The above reminded me of a tour I took of the Burroughs Facility. Besides the B205 and B220 computers, they had on display a mass storage device called a DataFile, nicknamed: the "Coffin Computer":
Stories about the B5000 and people who were there
One of our tape devices looked like a cof- fin. It was called a DATAFILE. It had 50 lengths of tape with two eight-digit tracks of in- formation on each tape. So logically, there were 100 tapes in this thing that was exactly the size of a coffin7. Every record was addressable. There were no reels in it. The tape just piled up on one side or the other of the pinch-rollers. The biggest problem with it was that if a strip of tape was left to lay there for more than a week it would stick together. Then when someone tried to read it, the whole wad of tape would come up and get all tangled up in the pinch-rollers. So any good Field Engineer would have a hip-pocket program that moved all of the tapes every day.