The Victor Talking Machine Company
From 1912 on, the dividends which Victor paid were large. So large, in fact, that it seemed to many that the prices at which Victrolas and Victor Records were sold must have included an unusual margin of profit.
The facts are, of course, that these dividends simply reflected the large volume which the company was doing on comparatively small capitalization due to the company’s conservative policy of “plowing back” profits.
From 1902 to 1911, dividends had been held to 6% on its common capitalization of $2,000,000 or $120,000 a year. During this period undivided profits increased from a technical $400,000 to an actual $4,250,000.
In 1901, the company’s assets totaled $3,024,413 with $2,726,124 representing patent rights, good will, and treasury stock. By 1921, this had increased to $43.426.756. with patent rights, good will, treasury stock, and matrixes accounting for $2.00.
A total life-volume of more than $600,000,000 had been produced with comparatively little cash having been added to the $50,000 which Mr. Berliner had paid for 500 shares of Victor preferred (with a bonus of 1,000 shares of common) back in 1901. As to the dividends which were paid from 1912 to 1922 inclusive, they were the equivalent of a net of approximately 7% on the volume during this ten year period.
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