[D8332ZCM], Letter from Francis Robbins Upton to Thomas Alva Edison, August 31st, 1883



[SELECTABLE FOR LAMP MARKETING STRATEGY] If we can control the foreign trade by reducing price of the lamps down even to our percent cost Iam strongly in favor of it. We can make the lamps cheaper in large quantites (eg., March 1883 54,000 lamps average 29.3 cents; in July 14,000 avg 45.4 cents) . Could make 100,000 for under 25 cents each. Proposes using loss leaders: "In many large mills I have been informed that they sell certain standard lines of goods at cost, that they may bring down the general expenses...." "The lamp business is almost precisely like the standard fabric business. We make one article in large quantities, by subdivision of labor." The best offer we can make by the percent of the American Price and share the profits below thirty five cent cost. This leaves us 5 cents unshared and the rest divided by half. The best way to make money is with such volume "that your profit will be sufficient selling at a price that parties starting in a small factory cannot make money at." European demand comes at good time, during dull season of domestic market. If you can get European trade for a few years we'll get it down so they woj't be able to touch us with new factories. We shall need very much larger market in the nest few years as it "will take time for the U.S. to take 100,000 a month. I think it will be three years"








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[D8332ZCM], Letter from Francis Robbins Upton to Thomas Alva Edison, August 31st, 1883

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Thomas A. Edison Papers, School of Arts and Sciences, Rutgers University