Abstract: The Sun Never Sets on National Cash Registers: NCR Goes Abroad and Sells Itself as a Modern Company
The National Cash Register Company (NCR), founded in 1885 in Dayton, Ohio, quickly grew to international prominence selling cash registers. John Patterson, the company president, made international operations a key component of the company's policies and business strategy. The NCR customer was a small business owner, who had much in common with other small businessmen throughout the world, regardless of nationality. NCR viewed its customer base as a unified group with similar needs and thus used the same sales techniques throughout the world. Other companies of the time saw foreign markets simply as a way to unload surpluses, while Patterson used foreign business to create a distinct image for his company. The foreign sales were used widely in advertising materials and company publications, as well as in sales pitches and exhibitions. Foreign sales did serve a monetary function, but were more important because NCR then used its foreign business to sell itself as a modern and cosmopolitan company.