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Our Not-Kickstarter is about ready to ship, have a look at the sculpts here!
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Author Topic: 2018 Review!  (Read 910 times)
Leon
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« on: 30 December 2018, 09:14:32 PM »

As we hit the end of the year I thought it would be good to look back at 2018 and assess how we did.  It's a bit of a mixed bag so we'll start with the areas that we didn't do so well...

BKC-IV
Despite all of the work that has gone into BKC over the past 12 months we weren't quite able to get it finalised and off to the printers in time for Christmas.  We know that a huge number of you have been patiently waiting for this to be completed and it's something that I'll be thankful to get off my 'To Do' list personally.  The good news is that the bulk of the work is done, we're just fine-tuning things at this point.  I've got some edits to make to the army lists, plus a few tweaks from our initial round of feedback and then we'll be sending a pdf out to a wider group for our final round of feedback.  Once that comes back, we'll make any final adjustments and then it's off to the printers!  

TB Line
We'd really wanted to be further along the TB Line re-releases by now but with the BKC work above and our other releases this year, they got bumped down the queue and we only managed to get two of the ranges released.  We also underestimated how much clean-up work was required on the figures, so the job of simply prepping them for new moulds was a lot more intensive than we'd hoped.  We know what we're dealing with now and with clearer waters ahead we'll be able to crack on with this.

Shows
From a purely business perspective, the shows for 2018 were a bit hit and miss and by the end of the year our sales were down considerably.  A large part of this was the loss of the Derby event plus us not attending the Skelp and Durham shows, so for 2019 we've added a new Glasgow show to the calendar and we're hoping to add another if there's space for us.  We're also doing some work on the show stand to streamline the 10mm side of things and expand with some product lines that will appeal to a wider market.


So with those out of the way, let's look at the positives!

Releases
We managed 313 releases this year which is a huge amount of new product.  We put out a complete range for the Korean War, plus Aztecs and Risorgimento Italians, as well as expanding our WWI, WWII, Napoleonic and Modern vehicle ranges.  All of the releases can be found here: http://www.pendrakenforum.co.uk/index.php/topic,18103.0.html

Those 313 codes are just on the Pendraken 10mm side of things, we also added a variety of MDF buildings, multi-scale animals and some third-party products as well.  For next year we'll be continuing in the same vein with at least 100 new releases already sculpted or in the works, plus the new projects which we've got planned.  We'll have more info on those in a separate thread coming shortly.

Website Photos
This is something we've been working on for a long time and over the past year we managed to add nearly 400 new photos to existing codes on the website, as well as making sure that all of the new releases had pics as well.  We recently did a tally-up and found that we've got a little over 1500 codes still without images so this is going to be a priority for next year.

Turnaround Times
With the 2 new casting staff on board we've made real progress on our turnaround times, reducing them from an average of 11 days in the previous year down to an average of only 4 days for 2019.  The new guys are doing well on a variety of ranges now so we've got capacity to expand their workload for the first time in Pendraken's history.  Having this available means that we can work harder on getting new ranges released and new images added to the site, as well as some other jobs that we've never had time for at Pendraken HQ.

Not-Kickstarter
The not-Kickstarter proved to be a real success and demonstrated that this is a viable method of getting future ranges into production.  Once the 1809 expansion is complete we'll have a sit down and work out where we can utilise this next.  At this stage it's likely to be further Napoleonic ranges.

Minibits
Minibits showed real growth this year, adding several new product lines in the form of Vallejo Panzer Aces paints and more RedVectors buildings, as well as running a successful Kickstarter for some new 28mm figures.  We've got plans for some more of the same through 2019.

Sales
Sales for 2018 were up on 2017, helped mostly by having a price increase in February (which always boosts sales in January) followed by the not-KS and KS boosts in November.  This helped to cover the downturn in show sales and keep the cashflow ticking over.  

WI Awards
Last month we managed to pick up 2nd place for Customer Service in the Wargames Illustrated Awards, which was a massive achievement.  When you consider the size of some of the 28mm companies and the massive market share that they occupy, for us to get that 2nd place is huge.  And it's all down to you guys and your votes, so thank you for that support.


So, all in all it's been a good year at Pendraken HQ.  There's obviously a few areas that we need to focus on but generally we've made good progress on several fronts.  With the plans we've got for next year, plus the imminent relaunch of BKC, things are looking pretty good!

We'll be discussing our plans for 2019 in a new thread very soon, so keep an eye out for that.  And in the meantime, we hope you all have a good New Year!
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steve_holmes_11
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« Reply #1 on: 30 December 2018, 09:45:10 PM »

Congratulations, it looks like a steady year form a company with a firm plan and direction.

Tell me more about this new 2019 show in Glasgow.

Ohh- This one?  http://www.g3gamers.co.uk/?page_id=301

Cycling distance form home, I hope to be there.
« Last Edit: 30 December 2018, 09:47:44 PM by steve_holmes_11 » Logged
Steve J
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« Reply #2 on: 30 December 2018, 10:01:21 PM »

A nice review of your year and interesting to read about the hit and miss nature of some of the shows. Personally, the internet has removed a lot of the 'need' to go to shows from a purely purchasing point of view, so I do wonder how long they can continue in their current format. Certainly looking forward to seeing what you've got planned for 2019 Smiley.
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Leon
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« Reply #3 on: 30 December 2018, 10:06:40 PM »

A nice review of your year and interesting to read about the hit and miss nature of some of the shows. Personally, the internet has removed a lot of the 'need' to go to shows from a purely purchasing point of view, so I do wonder how long they can continue in their current format. Certainly looking forward to seeing what you've got planned for 2019 Smiley.

We'd hoped that the Tabletop Live event would have been a nice addition but unfortunately it just wasn't a wargames show and we lost money attending that one.  I think in general there needs to be less shows across the board.  We speak to traders who go to the same region of the UK 3 or 4 times in the space of 2 months, spending 3 or 4 lots of stand hire, hotels, fuel and food, plus their own time away from home.  If those events were combined into 1 or 2 shows, then you'd have more people going to each and the traders would have halved their costs as well. 
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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!
Westmarcher
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« Reply #4 on: 30 December 2018, 10:26:49 PM »

.... about this new 2019 show in Glasgow.

Ohh- This one?  http://www.g3gamers.co.uk/?page_id=301

Cycling distance form home, I hope to be there.


Me, too. Only about 15 miles away. Just hope I'm not away on holiday at the end of June!  Cheesy
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I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I have ended up where I needed to be.
paulr
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« Reply #5 on: 30 December 2018, 10:49:03 PM »

Another very productive year for Pendraken, well done all Applause Applause Applause

The effort you are putting into getting BKC IV right will, I'm sure, pay dividends and is an example of the level of service that got you the well deserved recognition in the WI Awards
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fsn
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« Reply #6 on: 30 December 2018, 11:03:17 PM »

Hmmm. When you put on your website that you are closed until 7th Jan, a reasonable person would think you are enjoying the delights of home and hearth.

I trust you are having some downtime?

Anyway. May I say thank you to all at the Pendraken caverns for all you do to keep this bunch of ne'er-do-wells, fantasists and the frankly barking engaged in legitimate pursuits.
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Lord Oik of Runcorn
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mad lemmey
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« Reply #7 on: 30 December 2018, 11:56:02 PM »

Nice one, very honest and very positive, even with items that did not go according to plan.
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Cavillarius
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« Reply #8 on: 31 December 2018, 12:52:13 AM »

For me 2018 meant a reintroduction to wargaming, first with Baccus 6m, then with Pendraken 10mm.
I must be completely spoiled for any future companies with regards to customer service. Well done, thank you and a very happy new year!
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paulr
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« Reply #9 on: 31 December 2018, 01:30:40 AM »

Hmmm. When you put on your website that you are closed until 7th Jan, a reasonable person would think you are enjoying the delights of home and hearth.

I trust you are having some downtime?

Anyway. May I say thank you to all at the Pendraken caverns for all you do to keep this bunch of ne'er-do-wells, fantasists and the frankly barking engaged in legitimate pursuits.

Well said FSN Shocked Wink
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Leman
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« Reply #10 on: 31 December 2018, 04:19:05 PM »

A very interesting summary. I have to admit that I too have started to curtail my show visits, this coming year probably only Phalanx and Colours. 10mm has had to take a bit of a back seat to 15mm and 3mm, but promises to be back with a vengeance with WWI and the SYW next year, and possibly some medieval stuff for DOK2. Good to see that the Womenís Institute is a broad enough church to include an interest in wargaming. I well remember the Batley groupís re-enactment of Pearl Harbour.
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toxicpixie
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« Reply #11 on: 01 January 2019, 12:50:09 AM »

Glad to see WMMS didnít cripple you with the snow Wink

Fingers crossed for BKC!
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