Congrats on the new shop. Part of me misses the excitement and passion on the industry, however the expectation of the modern buyer is pretty wild due to the globalisation of so many of consumer products, when the big importers struggle, it makes it worse for the smaller lads. There is many brands that will never enter Australia, many outright didn't want to waste their time. The bike industry has some very challenging times ahead! You guys have always been excellent, and have definitely held through alot. Bulk currency drops, a declining dh scene until enduro came to be etc. I still dearly wish for craftworks to find its way back to its throne, the lack of australian stuff saddens me. Chunked, aerial, ethos, unscrupulous dealer, duebel. It'd be good to see Saracen here, they were always up and willing to work closely without being greedy. Those guys and Dartmoor (Andrejz especially) will forever hold my utmost respect.Gonna be real honest. You aren’t the target market. Absolutely no offence, we completely get it ... Similarly we aren’t on the discount path, or on the ‘you can get it anywhere path’ ... it would be real easy to load up ORBO with our Link stuff and just gut pricing ... but that’s not sustainable for us, our customers, or our suppliers and to be honest that’s never been how Link
Some shizzle We’ve picked up over 10years of Pushie/Link.
Not all suppliers want to push volume ... lots do but not all
Not all suppliers want to sell online
Not all suppliers want distributors to sell direct or online ... and they will punish you
Similarly on the flip side.
There are heaps of brands that are fracking awesome, but they are just too small or just can’t offer two levels of pricing. Or the logistics is just fracking crazy.
There are heaps of brands that just want volume and think online direct is the way forward
There are heaps of Consumer direct brands that can and will benefit from a solid customer focused and operationally savvy local partner
Australia is such fracking a small market fracking ‘agents’ have to work fucking stupidly hard and take on ridiculously large amounts of risk to secure supply.
Many suppliers really understand and value the support that retailers offer
Many Suppliers, just don’t give a shit about Australia and our small pissant market and can’t or more likely WONT offer competitive pricing to allow two layers let alone 1 layer of pricing ... @Sethius has comments on this before.
Many distributors will sink themselves to secure an agreement, order way way too much, need to put on expensive sales force ... then create a downward spiral of ironically high prices, then discounting, then under supply key models, then new distributors. And so on. I’ll guarantee every ‘agent‘ has 2 to 5 of these depending on business size. 100% agree the consumer and even retailers will give zero fucks, but think what this does from a bigger picture, longer term view.
For those that are familiar with my personal story (ie, I was you, I never bought locally, never understood the value of a good LBS or even a good local business, thought one shitty LBS experience was 100% indicative of all LBS ... it was 100% price driven). Have learnt a lot in 10years since starting up Pushie/Link.
Have learnt that there are some really awesome people and businesses in this Industry both locally and globally. People I would do a lot for, which I could never say in other industries I’ve worked in.
Have learnt that money, although important, isn’t the key driver for all. COVID was only reenforced many of my left leaning, huggy, feely biases.
Anyway, will be interesting to see what happens. Sam and I have been thinking about this pretty much since we started business together. We headed off launching an onliner for a long long time because we were scared we would alienate retailers. Similarly, we knew we couldn’t compete with the established players, on range or price. But hopefully you can see a little bit about the reasons why.
ultimately, we like good shizzle, we like working with awesome people and suppliers regardless of model, Link has always tried to offer the best and most honest service/communication to both consumers and retailers alike. We make mistakes and fuck up, but service is about communication and solution planning ... so to us ... ORBO was just a natural extension of LINK and the way we do business. It’s allowed us to add another team member, add a couple of local and international suppliers including Revel, the waffle lady, 81, Shimano, Sola et al to come. So keen to will see what happens.
Shame 95% of you aren’t our target market lololololz.
edit ... soz for the novel ... I’m procrastinating. Fuck it.