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Thus, Duracell's success would be highly dependent on energy technologies, especially in the 1980s and 1990s, built into cellular telephones, camcorders, pocket computers, and other innovations.By 1980 the company was again on the market, this time as part of a deal between Kraft Inc. Kraft, which was owned by Phillip Morris at the time, merged with Dart, owner of Duracell.Mallory's profit margins were respectable in that price-competitive climate, but were under constant pressure.The boom of 1972 allowed the firm to boost sales of electrical and electronic items to industry, complementing consumer sales.Specifically, makers of appliances bought Mallory components to satisfy the growing retail demand for household items, such as laundry units, electric and gas ranges, and dishwashers, among other consumer durables.The company saw this expansion of consumer durables, in particular, as a basis for long-term growth. economy left the fast-growth path of the 1960s and Mallory's margins fell, it was able to weather the downslide of demand that accompanied the recession of 1973. In 1977, Fortune magazine ranked Mallory as the 507th largest company, with 3 million in sales and profits of million (which put it in the 170th position).The battery was essentially an undifferentiated product, and niches in the market were primarily established through advertising.

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At the time, Mallory was being hit hard by competition from Energizer and Panasonic.From the early 1960s into the mid-1970s sales grew strongly (the average annual rate was 5 percent from 1963 to 1972); however, company profits reflected the recession of the mid- and late-1960s, with earnings per share hitting a peak of .34 in 1966 before falling sharply with the recession.With the beginning of the deep recession in mid-1973, company earnings began to fall sharply.Kidder had joined Dart as vice-president of Planning and Development and made the recommendation that Dart acquire Mallory in order to add more consumer business to Dart.After gaining control over Mallory, Dart divested several of Mallory's subsidiaries but kept and promoted Duracell.Duracell began placing "freshness dating" on alkaline battery packaging in 1987—the first consumer battery producer to do so.


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