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I was just looking up information about the Tramiels and found this link interesting and a bit disturbing into how they essentially ran businesses. Unfortunately this style did not help Atari.

Ignorance? Greed? Power?Arrogance? Lack of vision?
I wonder what was the reason(s) for Atari's demise.


..."With Commodore again reeling, Tramiel vowed never again to be at the mercy of a vital supplier. In 1976 he made a momentous acquisition: MOS Technology, a Pennsylvania chip manufacturer that also turned out to be extravagantly nurturing about 200 different R&D projects. Tramiel, a slash-and-burn, early-day Al Dunlap in management style, killed most of the projects immediately. But he listened hard when an engineer named Chuck Peddle told him the company had a chip that was effectively a microcomputer. And small computers, said Peddle, "are going to be the future of the world.

Commodore got to the market with its computer in 1977, the same year that Apple and Tandy put their micros on sale. In the next few years, Tramiel drove those competitors and others wild by combatively pushing prices down and down, to levels like $200. He also became famous for rough treatment of suppliers, customers, and executives -- and about it all was fiercely unrepentant. "Business is war," he said. "I don't believe in compromising. I believe in winning."

....."But then, in early 1984, just as annual sales were climbing above $1 billion, Tramiel clashed with a Commodore stockholder mightier than he, Irving Gould -- and when the smoke had cleared, Tramiel was out. The nature of their quarrel was never publicly disclosed. Today, however, Tramiel says he wanted to "grow" the company, and Gould didn't.

Commodore was really Tramiel's last hurrah. True, he surfaced again quickly in the computer industry, agreeing later in 1984 to take over -- for a pittance -- Warner Communications' floundering Atari operation. But in a business changing convulsively as IBM brought out its PC and the clones marched in, Atari was a loser and ultimately a venture into which Tramiel was unwilling to sink big money. Eventually he folded Atari into a Silicon Valley disk-drive manufacturer, JTS, in which he has a major interest but plays no operational role."

 Topics Author  Date
  Interesting facts about Tramiel/Atari legacy new Atarian 04-10-2005 23:11 

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