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Changes for 2018 ??

Started by Mojo, December 31, 2017, 01:19:18 pm

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Every year I sit down and map out the new year. I set goals for the year, add products, drop poor selling products, change marketing plans, create new ones and look to grow both companies. 2018 is no different as we are making a huge push into certain markets using a new acrylic fabric that just hit the market. We branded it under our trademark and are going to be pushing it as we will have great margins with it by upselling it. The RV Parts and manufacturing company we are expanding by adding two new registered dealer agreements with National manufacturers. We will be repping their product lines which will add over 150 SKU's to our products listing. We are also increasing our rally presence to do more over the counter sales which means a lot more travel. I have marked 20 % as our goal for revenue growth with the fabric company and 50 % for the manufacturing company.

Are any of you making changes with your business's in 2018 ?



I'd like to see what if any extra funds I have due to the tax changes.  A new vehicle would be nice.
I want to take on more re-upholstery jobs and less refinishing jobs.
Keep more materials around - foams, cottons, dacron's, etc. 
Goals for me are staying out of debt - every year I have to pay more for business expense while keeping my prices level and competitive
All the best in 2018 Mojo - sounds like a plate full


Service is the primary function of my business.  I will continue focusing on doing the work that many in
the business are either not capable of doing or avoid.  These type of issues became evident in recent
years as most providers did not keep abreast on the newer technologies used in product manufacturing - even small service has to be smart regarding -
furniture and auto interiors.

Instead the service competition opted to do more the routine (simple) but that type of work is more competitive and there is less profit it.

Over recent years, it has been evident that many come to where it can be done with less sensitivity
on price.  A bigger percent of my service does not ask the price (no place else to go in reality).  This
situation dove tails into working with those who have the money - getting the work done is very
important to this market. 

My accounts have increased among the corporate crowd.  This past year alone, I renovated the
furnishings of several expanding medical facilities.  It was interesting that they opted to renovate
older furniture than purchasing the foreign cheaper made furniture.

In a nut shell, continue growing the technical service capability instead of catering to "how much"
price sensitive markets. 

Go where your competition is not capable!

This strategy keeps me busy!



  I am branching into a market that we have serviced for some time but now I have started to treat it as a separate business. We custom build and upholster Cornices. Some big some small but it follows my love for building things.
Visit the new web site
or on Facebook
I am excited and will see how well I can build it up.

Minichillo's Upholstery


Quote from: MinUph on December 31, 2017, 02:47:28 pm
  I am branching into a market that we have serviced for some time but now I have started to treat it as a separate business. We custom build and upholster Cornices. Some big some small but it follows my love for building things.

I enjoy building or recovering cornices too. But around here, the drapery workrooms seem to get all the cornice business.
"Perfection is the greatest enemy of profitability" - Mark Cuban



Very interesting concept.

I have a number of cornices ( we call them window valances in the RV Industry ) that I need to redo for our coach. I have all the leather and designs in my head but no time. I thought about branching out and adding window shades and valances to our offerings but to be honest, we simply do not have the time and resources. I need to be careful of just what markets we go into as we cannot be everything to everyone. We are seriously overloaded with products already and adding cornices or auto shades would kill us.

I have found that sub contracting work out to others works best. I have had 2 customers want their driver/passenger seats done and sent them to Catalina Ric. If I get a call to do window valances I can send them to you. I will have to get together with you and show you how they are constructed for RV's. Some are simple and some are very elaborate with wooden insets.



Sounds good Chris. Let me know if I can be service.
Minichillo's Upholstery


Rose and I learned many years ago that building our business and hiring employees was not our forte. Simply put we are a mom and pop business. And we have done well to realize this. In doing so we have built up a niche business catering to customers with antiques and mid-century furniture. We also cater to designers. And at the same time try not to compete with discount furniture stores. On top of all that our number one goal is to have the best customer service in the area. And we do.

Our market is much smaller than yours and because of this our marketing is much different. Over the last 3 years we have built up our online presence and moved from a rural location to be closer to customers who can afford us. We have spent the last 4 months building a new custom shop to fit our goals.

This year we have worked a lot of long days and a lot of 7 day weeks and that has got to stop. This is the year to see the fruition of our hard work. It will be pretty much the same ole thing but with a much more organized and comfortable work room. This should mean more profits with less man hours.

We are working on another real estate venture that will probable be our last. After over 30 years in business the next 10 years will see us slowly winding down.
There cannot be a crisis next week. My schedule is already full.


Doyle is there anything else you can add? I find your approach interesting and possibly something that might work for me.
And how much auto do you do, or is most of your business furniture?



Missed this question about type/distribution of work done.

Auto and marine are followed by repairs to all including furniture.

Usually marine increases late spring but it did that in late fall.  I don't know why, perhaps they found
shops were snowed - with that in the spring and are getting a head start.  Like I said, not sure.

This winter season has experienced an increase in auto upholstery repair, especially in the vehicles
costing over $50K.  This work is usually centered on the driver's seat and the quest is to duplicate
original, which is understandable due to the vehicle cost.  Contractors usually use their trucks a good
deal represent this crowd.

Then furniture repairs/upholstery is pretty strong through out the year - all types.

Actually diversification breeds more work - what I am saying if a customer has a chair done and
realizes any type can get done - then that work becomes additive.

One noticeable fact is; anything worked on one experiences the higher technology from when
the item came. 

A business is always learning because producing industries technology advances.

These are changes and challenges just about all business face.




Outside of RICAT, I believe you are the only one here that performs all forms of upholstery. I am surely not saying others cannot do other work but you take any stitching job that comes in the door.

My hats off to you. I know what a job it is to stay on top of the latest fabrics, trends and assemblie with awnings. I cannot imagine you having to stay on top of everything concerning marine, autos, furniture, etc.

God Bless Ya'll. It would drive me insane but I have to admit it would be fun as I am sure many challenges come in the door constantly.