Businessweek Archives

Discontinuing a Product Line


Sometimes you discover that a product that once generated revenue and was beloved by customers and staff no longer holds the same viability in the marketplace. You now face a difficult decision: "sunset" the product, or pour money into it in hopes of a resurrection.

It’s a tough call because you’ve likely spent a good deal of time, energy, and funds. Retiring a product you have worked hard to support can tug at the corporate heart. Keep in mind, however, that the marketplace has spoken and your balance sheet doesn’t lie. Provided that the product is not your entire business or that retiring it won’t force you to fire your entire staff, fond memories can’t play a role in the decision-making.

Once you know it’s time to say goodbye, the important questions are: How do we exit properly with minimal impact on customers? How do we shift employee roles?

Delaying the decision to exit only delays the recovery and path to the future.

Dennis Casey

Executive Vice-President

Brevient Technologies

Milwaukee


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