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Old 18-10-2017, 12:02 AM   #11
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Any one know where this leaves Airfix as I am also a plastic kit modeller as well?
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Old 18-10-2017, 12:37 AM   #12
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Not sure actually. There was talk about selling off the smaller brands though I dont know if Airfix was included. The idea was to recoup costs to keep the company going. The assets sold would likely to continue with a new ownership so I dont see any issues of supply should this take place with Airfix. Initially while any new company gets on its feet, there could be delays expected, but after settling down time all should go well.

Regarding Hornby and Oxford working together and possibly even merging. This is a really good plan for both companies as it takes the best of both and brings them forward. It is good news.
While we all have our favourite companies, it never is good news to see any struggle or worse still, go bust. Hindsight is something all companies hoped to have but life doesn't work like that, so it is good a way has been found to rescue Hornby (Hopefully!) and expand Oxford range of products. I briefly saw a stall at the Swansea model railway exhibition a week or two ago and as I was meeting my brother and his wife outside the event to have lunch, the plan was I was to go back in and see the trade parts but when I returned they were not letting any one in as they had decided to finish an hour early. The brief look at the car carrier wagon really looked an excellent item. At first I thought "Why a car carrier?" , but then it makes perfect sense. Oxford already make cars to go with it!
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Old 18-10-2017, 07:13 AM   #13
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Not good news today, "new" chairman leaving, another profit warning and this follows Tuesday's announcement that bulk discounts to dealers is to cease. Let's hope trading over Christmas improves.
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Old 18-10-2017, 09:09 AM   #14
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The guy who is leaving was the interim chairman i.e. caretaker - he has agreed to stay until a permanent, independent chairman can be appointed.

I'm not sure about the change in the bulk discount policy. It may mean that the prices at the likes of Hatton's may be closer, if not the same, as the smaller local shops but surely the end result will still be higher prices for the customer. Two consequences of that will be fewer sales and more forum moaning about the cost of the hobby.

i believe the company has two options for its future business model, affordable, higher volume sales or expensive, lower volume sales. It seems they may have opted for the latter.
I'm not arguing with you, I'm explaining why you are wrong.
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Old 18-10-2017, 10:52 AM   #15
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Not having the benefit of inside information personally I will wait and see.
Not going to join the speculation band. Who knows what is happening in the board room. Not many offers coming in though is there.
I may be wrong as I very often am. John
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Old 18-10-2017, 10:57 AM   #16
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In reply to lower prices and high volume or high prices and low volume....The high price low sales tends to work better when the country is in prosperity. For example, consider the early years of this hobby.
The times we are in and facing now, it may be better to chose volume sales at a lower price which are guaranteed to sell. The profits maybe lower, but if one can concentrate on the bread and butter trade at the cheaper end and just do the occasional ultra detailed special I think that may be the way to survive.
The high end of the market at the moment is sustainable for the short term but the danger to it is, the less sales one gets the more the prices need to rise to compensate. The more they rise the less sales. So it gets to be a downward spiral for a large manufacturer.
It is OK though for the modeller in a cottage industry who may sell less then 100 models a year as his market is wider then he can supply if he is building to a high standard. It keeps him in business (Or her) but it is not likely to employ a great number of people).

Reducing the profit margin to the box shifters is actually a good thing as it allows more model railway shops to enter the market. At the moment our shops are closing fast as they just have no hope in competing with the privileged few. For me in my early years in the hobby, even if this internet was available back then, it was the ability to get advice via my local model railway shops that used to exist that spurred me on in the hobby.
[ It is also a lack of the support in spares and advice that stopped me from enjoying a different hobby... Model racing cars! I could not aford Scalextric but I did buy Matchbox slot racing along with TCR. Both of which spares just were not forthcoming and I didnt have the ability to make metal contacts ("Used instead of brushes") myself, so rather then save and buy another set just to keep cars going I just abandoned the hobby].

The company also has to be very careful by selling direct. If they sell direct at their RRP mark up prices then they are not undermining the model shops. The more model shops that close, the less the sales as few of us can take up this hobby if we are not aware where to get the little things that go with the big things to keep our trains running. For me I it cost saving to pay double for a pack of rail joiners while in in such a shop, then to buy them via a mail order bargain shop. For security reason I never trade via the internet. Bitten once, twice shy as they say! (I use the internet like a catalogue).

Whichever road Hornby aims for, I hope they have every success. I can't guarantee I will buy larger things, as this depends on my income and requirements, but I will certainly buy the little everyday things as required. (E.g. rail cleaning rubbers, rail joiners, track pins along with the odd Smokey Joe type shunter etc, as I tend to be always tinkering with little projects to keep me going!)

Last edited by Mountain Goat; 18-10-2017 at 11:11 AM.
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