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Author Topic: 2018 Top 10 Requests!  (Read 8795 times)
Shedman
Playtester
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« Reply #30 on: 21 August 2018, 12:30:21 PM »

It would be interesting to see how many votes there were for each of the Requested ranges

Personally none of them appeal to me  except maybe the Japanese from the Boxer Rebellion

I'd like to see a generic range of greatcoated troops with different headdress eg shako, forage cap,  Carlist beret and without backpacks
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fsn
General
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Posts: 9241



« Reply #31 on: 21 August 2018, 12:38:42 PM »

I know you have "exotic" tastes when it comes to women and their clothing, but why is she wearing one of those plastic things you grow your vegetables under? 
Da doll went to a speak easy.  Now she's cabbaged, but she's still a swell tomato.  (Pronouced "tom-ate-toe".)
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Lord Oik of Runcorn
(You may refer to me as Milord Oik)

Oik of the Year 2013
Oik of the Year 2014
Prize for originality and 'having a go, bless him', 2015
3 votes in the 2016 Painting Competition!

15mm is dead. It just doesn't know it yet.
Leon
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« Reply #32 on: 21 August 2018, 12:51:02 PM »

It's hard to put a precise number to it but it's probably something around 15%-20% of each sale going towards recouping the sculpting/moulding costs.  Then once a new range has paid for itself that money becomes 'profit', which is essentially our wages.  30 figures for a Gangster range would mean 1000 in sculpting/moulding costs so you'd need to be selling 5000-7000 of them to recoup the outlay, which is a lot of figures!  You can adjust that target by increasing the retail price of the figures, but even charging double the usual price we'd still need 2500-3500 to make them viable.

At our scale the profit margins are so low that really everything we produce is a long-term investment that adds to the overall viability of the business.  The ranges that have been in production for a while keep the sales coming in and allow us to put money back into producing new ranges.  Those new ranges tick over and slowly pay for themselves and then become part of the profitable side.  Some ranges will pay for themselves quicker than others, which is why we use things like the Requests lists to identify which ranges will be more likely to reach profit sooner.

We've chatted previously about the Napoleonic ranges and having a customer willing to buy 1000's at a time.  We know that we can put 1000 of sculpting/moulding into those ranges and we're going to recoup a large chunk of it almost immediately, so it's less of a risk to get them produced.  The other side of that coin is something like the recent Korean War ranges which were around 6000 of investment and were produced based on their position at the top of the Request lists.  Using the estimates above we're going to need over 30,000 of sales on those ranges before they become profitable but we weighed it up and thought the level of interest justified the risk.  Time will tell whether we're right on that!

The Kickstarter method is something we'll be looking at for a project in the near-future, like we did with the Mongol range, done through the Forum here rather then KS itself.  We should have some info on that towards the end of September.
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Orcs
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« Reply #33 on: 21 August 2018, 07:52:42 PM »

WoW!  That's around a 1000 packs. An awful lot ,  especially if people are buying for skirmish games

I would certainly be very interested in a "Pendraken Kickstarter" for Biblical ranges.  Preferably before I buy any more in 15mm. 
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paulr
Field Marshal
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Posts: 10048


« Reply #34 on: 21 August 2018, 08:27:48 PM »

Thanks Leon, an interesting and valuable insight into the realities of the business side Undecided
Makes me appreciate the range of figures even more Smiley
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2018 Painting Competition - Runner-Up!
parkerm17
Cadet

Posts: 46


« Reply #35 on: 22 August 2018, 11:45:57 AM »

Having avoided Napoleonic Wargaming for about 50 years (loathing the Corsican tyrant for a start) I have decided on the Peninsular War as a "bucket list" project, I would like to know if Pendraken is likely to fill this glaring hole in their ranges in the near future or should I look elsewhere?
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Leon
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« Reply #36 on: 23 August 2018, 03:36:01 PM »

I would like to know if Pendraken is likely to fill this glaring hole in their ranges in the near future or should I look elsewhere?

It's something we've been asked about repeatedly but we've got to finish off the 1809 and 1815 areas that we've already started.  We're getting close on those now, but anything for the Peninsular would be mid-late 2019 at the earliest.
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www.pendraken.co.uk - Home to over 3500 products of shiny 10mm goodness!
www.minibits.net - MDF bases, Vallejo paints, I-94 decals, Red Vectors MDF buildings, Crossover Miniatures, Militia Miniatures and more!
Sunray
Brigadier
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Posts: 2340


« Reply #37 on: 23 August 2018, 05:48:05 PM »

It's hard to put a precise number to it but it's probably something around 15%-20% of each sale going towards recouping the sculpting/moulding costs.  Then once a new range has paid for itself that money becomes 'profit', which is essentially our wages.  30 figures for a Gangster range would mean 1000 in sculpting/moulding costs so you'd need to be selling 5000-7000 of them to recoup the outlay, which is a lot of figures!  You can adjust that target by increasing the retail price of the figures, but even charging double the usual price we'd still need 2500-3500 to make them viable.

At our scale the profit margins are so low that really everything we produce is a long-term investment that adds to the overall viability of the business.  The ranges that have been in production for a while keep the sales coming in and allow us to put money back into producing new ranges.  Those new ranges tick over and slowly pay for themselves and then become part of the profitable side.  Some ranges will pay for themselves quicker than others, which is why we use things like the Requests lists to identify which ranges will be more likely to reach profit sooner.

We've chatted previously about the Napoleonic ranges and having a customer willing to buy 1000's at a time.  We know that we can put 1000 of sculpting/moulding into those ranges and we're going to recoup a large chunk of it almost immediately, so it's less of a risk to get them produced.  The other side of that coin is something like the recent Korean War ranges which were around 6000 of investment and were produced based on their position at the top of the Request lists.  Using the estimates above we're going to need over 30,000 of sales on those ranges before they become profitable but we weighed it up and thought the level of interest justified the risk.  Time will tell whether we're right on that!

The Kickstarter method is something we'll be looking at for a project in the near-future, like we did with the Mongol range, done through the Forum here rather then KS itself.  We should have some info on that towards the end of September.

Thanks Leon for your honesty and transparency.    Its a sobering reality check on odd ball requests.  The Korean war is not a popular game topic compared with WW2, ACW or SYW.  However, I do believe that there is appeal and market in the wide range of proxy applications that these 1950s figures generate.    I get the sense of interest in the USA, but such sales are hit with a very rich postage.   And US stockists will want a margin.

From the forum members' point of view, perhaps the best advertisement for sales is to buy, paint, base and post on forum.
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fsn
General
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Posts: 9241



« Reply #38 on: 23 August 2018, 05:58:24 PM »

Thanks Leon for your honesty and transparency.    Its a sobering reality check on odd ball requests.  The Korean war is not a popular game topic compared with WW2, ACW or SYW.  However, I do believe that there is appeal and market in the wide range of proxy applications that these 1950s figures generate.    I get the sense of interest in the USA, but such sales are hit with a very rich postage.   And US stockists will want a margin.
Hear, hear!

From the forum members' point of view, perhaps the best advertisement for sales is to buy, paint, base and post on forum.
I'll exclude myself from that, shall I?
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Lord Oik of Runcorn
(You may refer to me as Milord Oik)

Oik of the Year 2013
Oik of the Year 2014
Prize for originality and 'having a go, bless him', 2015
3 votes in the 2016 Painting Competition!

15mm is dead. It just doesn't know it yet.
paulr
Field Marshal
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Posts: 10048


« Reply #39 on: 23 August 2018, 08:30:51 PM »

Seconded

 Grin Grin Grin
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2018 Painting Competition - Runner-Up!
Leman
Field Marshal
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Posts: 10645



« Reply #40 on: 24 August 2018, 09:07:52 AM »

Once the weather improves for varnishing, Paul.
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Steve J
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Posts: 8533


« Reply #41 on: 24 August 2018, 10:42:54 AM »

Very interesting break down of what it costs to being out a range of figures. Thanks for sharing this Leon.
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Techno
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« Reply #42 on: 24 August 2018, 11:08:27 AM »

Very interesting break down of what it costs to being out a range of figures.

You wouldn't believe it.  I don't want to see

This reminds me of the time before I worked for the Evil Empire......White Dwarf, came out every month....."By magic".
It was only once I'd started working there, that I realised how much work...and how many people were involved in producing the magazine.

It's not just the 'toy soldier' industry where folk don't realise what's involved in keeping things 'ticking over'...It's just about everything.

Cheers - Phil
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Ithoriel
Lieutenant General
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Posts: 7124



« Reply #43 on: 24 August 2018, 12:04:09 PM »

When I was involved in the initial computerisation project for the local public library system the local council's in-house IT department decided there was no need to use a commercial product as they could "knock something up" fairly quickly. After all, libraries, how hard could it be?

Two hour meeting was scheduled for me to brief a project manager on requirements.

Many, many meetings and several increases in projected timescales and costs later we went with a commercial package.

Apparently library systems weren't quite as like selling tins of beans as IT had assumed Smiley
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