Acta Univ. Agric. Silvic. Mendelianae Brun. 2020, 68, 585-596
Published online 2020-07-01

Product Elimination in German Industrial Companies: A Comparison Study with US and UK Industrial Companies

Christina Bauer, Jana Turčínková

Department of Marketing and Trade, Faculty of Business and Economics, Mendel University in Brno, Zemědělská 1, 613 00 Brno, Czech Republic

Received September 11, 2019
Accepted May 26, 2020

This paper focuses on the product elimination in German industrial companies, especially in the mechanical engineering sector. The Product Life Cycle (PLC) theory is based on the typical curve, which shows the different stages a product experiences over the time. The last stage, the so-called decline or elimination phase, is characterized with decreasing sales figures, low market share and shrinking profits. Therefore, it sounds logical that such products should be eliminated. This study is analyzing if these indicators really are the only reasons to start the elimination process of a product, or if there are other reasons triggering this decision too. This paper is based on results of personal structured interviews (n = 102) with representatives of German mechanical engineering companies. The data was processed with use of statistical software SPSS, mean values and standard deviations were calculated, and Spearman's rank order correlation value analysis was applied. The results of this study were then compared with other earlier studies: Avlonitis (1984), Hart (1988), and Mitchell et al. (1998). The main findings suggest that the data from the new German study are highly correlating with the data from the United States (Mitchell et al., 1998) and the United Kingdom (Avlonitis, 1984; Hart, 1988). The results show that the reasons to phase out a product have not changed over the time; neither are the reasons different in different economics.


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