Saturday, August 9, 2014
We used to make things in this country #161. Commodore Business Machines
Commodore Business Machines started as a small typewriter sales and service company in downtown Toronto. The founder Jack Trameil started the company in 1958 and soon moved into the manufacture of office furniture. In the seventies he saw that electronics were the coming thing and the company started producing LCD watches as well as calculators. In 1977 they introduced their first desktop computer and soon installed them in Ontario schools. By the early 80s their Vic 20 was the worlds best selling computer.
In 1983 their factories in Scarborough produced about 450,000 Vic 20s and 64s and were exporting to 25 countries worldwide. By that time it was somewhat less Canadian as head office had been moved to the Bahamas and operational headquarters were located in Palo Alto, California.
In 1984 Jack Trameil left the now-international company and the company continued with the introduction of the popular Amiga in 1985. The company held its own through the growth of the PC market in the late eighties annd early nineties but in 1993 the CD32- Commodore's last machine was introduced, aimed at the computer games market.
Jack Trameil passed away on April 8 2012.
More history at Commodore.ca which also notes;
The Commodore 64 made a listing in the Guinness Book of World Records for "The most units sold of a single model of computer." Over the 10 years the Commodore 64 sold over 17 million units all sporting the same features it originally had back in 1982.