Ed’s Oil Fails Medical

‘The telecoms and auto industry may not want a long-term technological co-development programme with us but the medical diagnostics industry surely will as they rely on emerging technologies,’ Ed confides to his diary.

Ed has been trying to add value to his company through announcing long-term tie-ups with industry leaders. However he’s got nowhere with the telecoms and automotive industry leaders, largely because of his company’s private equity ownership.

‘If I can get the medical instrumentation market to ally with us then our company’s value will improve and we may be able to exit from private equity ownership with a valuation sufficient to trigger my pay-off, ‘ writes Ed, ‘and I’ve got a meeting with the CEO of the top European medical instrumentation company in a couple of days.’

Two days later, the diary entry reads. ‘The meeting went well. The CEO quizzed me about all the technologies we were developing. I may have told him too much but he was very insistent,’ writes Ed.

‘Then I get to the crunch. “With a long-term development co-operation agreement your company will get early access to these technologies,” I tell him.’

Silence. The CEO looks me straight in the eye. “We can’t do that”.’

‘”But why not?” I asked, “you’ve as good as said you want these technologies.”‘

“We do. But we live or die by our reputation, Ed,” said the CEO, “if there’s the slightest hint that our products are not reliable, we’re dead”.’

‘”We have the most rigorous testing schedules in the industry,” I replied.’

‘”I know,” replied the CEO, ” but you’re a private equity owned company and that suggests to many people that you may cut corners to save costs. I’m not saying you do. I’m not saying that you may do in the future. I’m just saying that we can’t afford to be seen to be in a long-term relationship with a company which, however unfairly, could be seen to be tainted by the possibility of employing sub-optimal procedures.’

‘So now we’re a pariah,’ Ed confides to his diary, ‘not-wanted-on-voyage by the telecom, auto or medical industries.’

‘Still the analysts say there’ll be double digit growth next year – that will boost our value whatever these idiots think,’ Ed tells his diary, ‘roll on my $25 mill.’



  1. I thought that part of London was almost submerged in horse shit, or at least bullshit

  2. “there’s much fun to be had looking at old forecasts e.g. the ‘paperless office’ circa 1980”

    I well remember John Young at HP telling us all that HP was aiming to be #2 in computers. Little did anyone know this meant by sales of printer ink !!

  3. That’s a great one Mike, there’s much fun to be had looking at old forecasts e.g. the ‘paperless office’ circa 1980

  4. “Forecasters are generally wrong about transport …”

    What are they generally right about ? 🙂

    Forbes declared Apple would be the first trillion dollar company and their shares almost went into freefall.

    In 2001 someone declared that semiconductors would be a trillion dollar market by 2020. Don’t think so.

    But I agree transport does tend to be the worst. You could have easily also used the decision by the MoT to make the M40 2 lane because most private individuals would be using helicopters by 2000.

  5. Forecasters are generally wrong about transport, Mike, remember the Victorian guy who warned Picadiily would be knee-deep in horse-shit in a few years at the rate it was piling up But you don’t see much horse-shit in Picadilly nowadays

  6. What worried me was two separate reports last week, one saying that by 2050 city roads would be so automated that we would not need traffic lights, and another saying that by the same date 75% of cars would be ‘driverless’.

    I hate to think of the chaos one of the 25% in an old Astravan or whatever could cause !!

  7. I can’t find it either Fred but it seems you were very prescient. It would be a remarkably convenient thing if it could be made to work.

  8. Hi David,
    Sorry – can’t find the original thread to reply to here. Do you remember a Mannerisms chat of several months ago discussing Google’s driverless car technology and I suggested that a driverless taxi might be a good idea. I can’t say if Google read Mannerisms or not but check this out ..

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