.Davis Typewriter Works

.Davis Typewriter Works

Monday, July 19, 2010

The End of Remington

At the recent collectors' convention I had the chance to mention, fairly in passing, my long-ago reporting on the very end of the Remington concern of long fame and found that a number of my colleagues weren't totally familiar with the admittedly obscure case. Since the end of companies is historically as important as the beginning, I'll give a brief discussion and then some links.

In 1979, Sperry-Rand Corporation spun off the business machines / typewriters / office portion of its business to a newly formed Remington-Rand, Inc. At about the time that happened the company had developed a single-element or "golfball" style machine along the lines of the well-established IBM Selectric; the Remington machine was known as the SR-101.

Now, the subsidiary of Remington in Holland was still around and was known as Remington Rand Holland BV. The initial arrangement was that the US firm would receive machines made by the Dutch subsidiary for sale here. In 1981, both firms declared bankruptcy; however, in June 1981 the subsidiary entered new ownership which then both began to develop a sales network of its own and cut off Remington Rand from receiving the machines that it had proprietary rights to. Further litigation and the horrible quality of the SR-101 doomed both companies.. but not before Remington in the US managed to get some SR-101 machines built in Italy under license. You'll also find, by the way, manual portables made by IMC but carrying the name REMINGTON distributed all over South America. Through the mid-80's Morse Distributing was bringing manual Remington standard machines into the US, according to NOMDA records and there are also records for Remington-Rand daisy wheel electric machines. It isn't clear at this juncture just which machines were licensed by which firm although it's a safe bet that any sold in the US were related to the US firm. One wonders if the IMC-derived manual portables in South America were creatures of the US, or of the Dutch, concern.

All of that stuff (those really late machines) however is minimal in impact and unimportant historically; Remington had really ceased to be any kind of a motivating factor many, many years before (perhaps even many decades before, really) and the Sperry Corporation spinoff that created the two firms carrying the Remington-Rand name in 1979 was really the end. To parallel Beeching's style in matters of this sort, at that time death had occurred and everything after was just the occasional twitch as far as the Remington name was concerned.

If you'd like some minute details you can look at this link and then you can look at this link and you'll see just what the situation for Remington Rand was at the time of the spinoff and SR-101 debacle.

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