sealPurdue News

June 1999

Y2K problem has its positives, Purdue retail expert says

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. -- The doom and gloom of potential computer glitches in the year 2000 may be overshadowing the beneficial side of the current rush to make computers compatible with the new millennium.

"Solving Y2K problems has forced businesses to confront the way they do business," says Richard Feinberg, professor of consumer sciences and retailing and director of the Purdue University Center for Customer-Driven Quality. "As a result, unexpected ways to better serve the customer are being found that are unrelated to computers."

He predicts some very positive benefits from the massive effort to upgrade computers and make sure that products and services are available in the new year. Among them:

  • Y2K fears could stimulate the economy if retailers and businesses stock up on inventory just in case deliveries or manufacturing are interrupted.

  • These increased inventories in the first quarter of 2000 may mean terrific values for customers, as businesses sell off their excess stock.

  • Updated computer systems improve the ability of businesses to partner with vendors and manufacturers. These improved relationships may mean that products reach customers faster and at a better price.

  • Y2K has created thousands of jobs, as businesses need experts and consultants and new products to identify and deal with Y2K concerns.

CONTACT: Feinberg, (765) 494-8303,

Compiled by: Beth Forbes, (765) 494-9723;

Purdue News Service: (765) 494-2096; e-mail,

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