Cumberland Metal Industries

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Background: Cumberland Metal Industries (CMI) was one of the largest manufacturers of curled metal products in the country.Their sales grew from $250,000 in 1963 to over 18,500,000 by 1979.It originally custom fabricated components for chemical process filtration and other highly technical applications. The company’s philosophy soon evolved from selling the metal as a finished product to selling products that used it as a raw material . Earlier CMI used to sell exaust gas recirculation(EGR) valves to automobile giants like Ford and Chrysler till they thought of diversifying. CMI plunged in making cushion pads required to drive piles in the ground. CMI pad was a continuous metal wire that has been flattened and then wound into tight, continuous ringlets .This curled metal could be made with any metal like stainless steel,copper,monel and also it could withstand any chemical and high temperatures. When CMI cushion pads were tested in comparison with the conventional asbestos cushion pads the results were gratifying for the CMI management . When CMI cushion pads and asbestos pads were put to test by Colerick Foundation it was found that CMI cushion pads worked 33% faster than the asbestos cushion pads and also the CMI pads heated up to only 250 F as compared to 600 -700F of asbestos pads which made manual handling of CMI pads much easier after one job is done. Another test by Fazio Construction requiring to drive 300 45-foot concrete piles to 40 feet into the ground with the help of both asbestos pads and CMI cushion pads revealed that the cost incurred to do the job using CMI pads was just $9 as compared to $45 of asbestos pads. Therefore, CMI cushion pads were not only efficient but also cost effective.

Market strategy and Pricing: CMI was very directionless as far as their market strategy was concerened. As the product did not have any precedents so the management found difficult to chart out a marketing strategy for their product. Though they...
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