For your first topic in this conference I would like for you to briefly review the financial literature to identify and present a description of one actual capital project/product failure and the reasons attributed to the failure. NOTE: A project or product failure, not a “company” failure such as Blockbuster and not a “discontinued” product because of a failed part, such as the Ford Pinto which was in production and sold for 10 years but was discontinued because of a faulty fuel system and placement of its gas tank. At a minimum, you are expected to provide information about the company, the product, and rationale for introduction of this product, the costs associated with the product (development and losses). The following are some illustrated examples of failed projects/products over the last 50 years you may want to research and consider: New Coke, McDonalds Arch Deluxe, Edsel automobile, Beta vs. VHS, Coors Spring Water, and Pepsi Crystal. Feel free to research others.
Remember this is a one to two paragraph exercise – do not go overboard – a few hours research and summation is all that’s required. I am interested only in your short, concise description of the project and the major reasons you believe it failed.
2) Synthesize your one-paragraph position on what 3-5 specific factors you believe most likely to contribute to capital project analysis failure.