Do we need a flashlight (parts) store in the EU?

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luminarium iaculator
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Agro wrote:
I’m curious, what kind of customer orders significantly more than 500 driver? Only a flashlight manufacturer comes to my mind but I haven’t heard of one that would use L4P drivers.

My drivers from L4P will be my own drivers under my OEM so maybe that why you don’t see any manufacturer uses L4P brand OEM drivers Wink

You can place “Agro” drivers order from L4P and Led4Power will made them for you.
Of course there is MOQ for that.

But some EU guy could lead group buy for drivers and if there is lets say 100 of us from EU and if we’ll commit to buy lets say 5 drivers per person. That is 500 drivers. And the guy who will lead group buy thread have every right to earn some $ cause there is some job with packing all of them and sending to group buy addresses.

luminarium iaculator
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djozz wrote:
A flashlight driver is quite close to any other led driver, he may be into non-flashlight lighting business?

I did talked with L4P and he can of course make any kind of driver but his passion are flashlight drivers and he is preparing something really cool… I don’t want to spoil surprise for community but it will(or should be) better than LD 4 series and yet unseen in flashaholic world…

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luminarium iaculator wrote:
Agro wrote:
I’m curious, what kind of customer orders significantly more than 500 driver? Only a flashlight manufacturer comes to my mind but I haven’t heard of one that would use L4P drivers.

My drivers from L4P will be my own drivers under my OEM so maybe that why you don’t see any manufacturer uses L4P brand OEM drivers Wink

You can place “Agro” drivers order from L4P and Led4Power will made them for you.
Of course there is MOQ for that.

But some EU guy could lead group buy for drivers and if there is lets say 100 of us from EU and if we’ll commit to buy lets say 5 drivers per person. That is 500 drivers. And the guy who will lead group buy thread have every right to earn some $ cause there is some job with packing all of them and sending to group buy addresses.


I understand that. But the L4P drivers are quite unique and I thought they would be somewhat recognisable.
luminarium iaculator
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We posted at same time… Yes… They will be unique (see post 63).

Quadrupel
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I hope he will offer buck or boost or maybe software stabilized Anduril compatible popular size drivers and of course for like 15eu shipped ;))

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luminarium iaculator wrote:
Not only Germany… All EU countries will pay an additional Customs tax on everything we order outside EU.

It’s not an additional tax, it’s a fixed price the courier takes for invoicing VAT. If the chinese companies would do this job, I’d be fine with it. But I just cannot justify driving 45 km to the customs office and back for a $5 order. Or pay 6 EUR to DHL for a tax of 95 ct.

The future will be even darker when China has to pay real money for shipping their goods. Isn’t this already the case for the USoA?

Smile, you cannot kill them all.

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luminarium iaculator wrote:
Not only Germany… All EU countries will pay an additional Customs tax on everything we order outside EU.

Until now we could actually buy something under 20 Euro value without paying tax but things will change now.

But don’t worry. China sellers will find a way like EU warehouses, duty free shipping etc… But price will rise for sure.


I think governments are trying to kill 2 birds with 1 stone.
Today national posts are loosing money from delivering huge amount of inexpensive goods. Same time customs are loosing money by managing (opening, estimating costs, printing extra documents) this packages with inexpensive internals.
Easy and effective solution is some fixed tax – buyer will be not interested in 2€ screen protector from China if it will go with 10€ tax bill. I think such scheme have been implemented in some Scandinavian countries (correct me if I’m not right).
Local warehouse will not help enthusiasts, it’s more like bux store or net market with cheap home goods – they will keep goods for housekeepers, not for flashaholics.
EU store is a great idea. From what Ive heard, EU based companies have reasonable import taxes. But managing business with many vendors that are far away and can surprise you with many months delay is always a headache.
MoreLumens
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Unheard wrote:

The future will be even darker when China has to pay real money for shipping their goods.

Why would they need to do that? Bulk shipping is what they do so shipping is way more cheaper and more efficient (eco-friendly too LOL ), when you just load up hundreds of packets in one container and way it goes vs. rubber tire transport or planes.

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MoreLumens wrote:
Unheard wrote:

The future will be even darker when China has to pay real money for shipping their goods.

Why would they need to do that? Bulk shipping is what they do so shipping is way more cheaper and more efficient (eco-friendly too LOL ), when you just load up hundreds of packets in one container and way it goes vs. rubber tire transport or planes.


I suppose one day countries will broke old agreements (that were signed back when China could not export more than Finland) that national post services must deliver goods transferred to them from other national post, without any extra cash for this services.
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Finnish post is already making profit from China packets. It started at 2019 when they said there was more tracked packets and overall price increases which made that happen. Or atleast that what they said. But like we know, no matter how much profit companies make, it will never be enough. Poor us. Sad

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One of my hobbies are mechanical keyboards for enthusiasts, gamers/e-sports, writers/authors, and general computing. A lot of people are interested in these products and parts, I mean literally millions buy these things and this hobby is at a much higher price point than flashlights (custom/modded keyboards go from 150-1000+ $US).
Guess what – only a few web shops for mechanical keyboards exist in the US or EU – they make a living, but even they have to select carefully what to order, how to import the goods (delays, customs, ..) and how to price it with expensive local shipping. And they are out of stock so frequently when you need something. It is so much easier to shop for these things on aliexpress or on Chinese web shops and the variety is about 10x better in Asia.

I don’t see flashlight parts, in contrast to other hobbies, being that popular on the consumer level. I have never met anyone IRL who was also into flashlights or modded them etc. I would love to see more US and EU based flashlight stores, but I doubt they would be commercially viable – unless they are run on a hobby basis or offer something special (mods, custom parts, ..). The average basket size for flashlight parts is tiny, you need them infrequently (you don’t build a light every week), and overhead for these commercial retailers is the same as for a R/C shop or something much more popular.

icpart
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In my country exist one shop which offer custom modded Convoy flashlights. They can mod your flashlight by request, also they offers different modded Convoy lights from original. And of course the prices are higher compared to China Convoy store.

yasenf
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Guys, I am in that business for 2 years already and I am not the store from above post. I order already assembled flashlights and sell them together with other products in a bigger online store, also keep some Convoy parts in stock. I can tell you, the parts are very difficult to manage and due to the small order size, it needs very high automation, or the labour cost will be ridiculously high per order. In my current setup, I am selling the parts quite expensive and I am loosing money on them.

Production of bulk volume of drivers is not a problem, I know a factory that can do 1000 drivers for 1 day, slower will be the sourcing of the components. About 1000 drivers is also the minimum order, so such store will need some investments. Sending unregistered post parcels (for cheap shipping) is also potential problem. Keep in mind, that for scalable business VAT and duty for China made products is also a must, EU has put a lot of controls along the way, so that bigger sales cannot pass by unnoticed.

Overall the business case doesn’t look very tempting. I have the infrastructure in place (team, system, webshop, warehouse, administration), sourcing the parts is also kind of not hard, but I am missing the business model yet, otherwise I would have done it a year ago. Do you think 1000 drivers can be sold for a month or average order is not 1 driver, but 3-4? Such things might fit the bill.

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