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A transition period - a good one ;)

October 7, 2018

Production batch of Jadus SR250 Exhaust Headers - with incorrect surface finish (yes, sent back, a further 3 week wait to re-do them :(  )

 

 

Firstly, I will start with an apology; I am sorry we have not been consistent with having parts in stock, I genuinely mean it.  It can be frustrating for a bike builder to be waiting on some key parts to keep the project moving forward and I understand this fully and completely.

 

I have been working really hard and will continue to do so, to get all parts back in stock as soon as possible.  

 

There really are no excuses for this, but I can give some kind of insight into the business and offer some kind of explanation.

 

When I started Jadus, a lot of the parts development and initial production orders were somewhat of a trial, to see how things go and to treat the product range as almost like a proof of concept - for further parts development and for potential future bike models and parts - it was essentially a startup.  Through this start-up process I managed to find some really, really good suppliers, ones that can be relied on, deliver excellent quality, stick to promised delivery times and maintain great communication through email at all times. Some of them I had taken with me from previous product development projects (at other companies I worked at), some were tips from other entrepreneurs and engineers, some I had met in person at manufacturing expos and some were completely cold-call random.  Even the random contacts ended up being fantastic!

 

However, in a couple of instances, things have not worked out so well and I have had to change suppliers.  This is a frustrating and time consuming process, basically you have to start from the beginning - from initial contact, to providing engineering drawings and even 3D printed prototype samples, on to receiving first manufactured prototypes, approval, order placement, shipping back and forth, then finally, receiving the first batch at home in our warehouse.  This takes months.

 

This is not an excuse either, had I had more intuition and initiated an alternative plan B earlier, these problems could have been avoided.  Chalk that up to experience (or lack there of).

 

Another issue for me has been this transition period - from startup phase, to delivering parts consistently and needing to place new production orders.  I have worked in the industry for many years, but have never really run the order planning and stock management side of things.  This is a good thing though!  And referred to in the business as a 'good problem'!  So don't get me wrong, this is great and I am very exited about it.

 

Anyway, after selling the first production orders of each part, there has been a transition in the company from standard activities such as customer support, packing and shipping orders, marketing and promotion etc, to needing to plan and manage when and how parts are manufactured and ordered - balancing order quantities, stock levels and cashflow.  I am hoping that doing this better will just come down to experience.

 

I’ll give a very simple example…  The tank leveling kits sell quite consistently and fast, so I know that when I have 5 kits left in stock, I can safely order the next production order.  They can also be manufactured and shipped relatively quickly - so the time from order to receiving parts is just a few weeks (in which time I may or may not have sold the remaining 5 kits, but there is not a lot of tied up capital either way).  BUT, take the exhaust headers for example, they sell very inconsistently - sometimes 1 a month, sometimes 5 a week! This makes it difficult to plan when to place a new production order - wait until there is only 5 left, or wait until there is just one left?  Then these actually take about 3 months to manufacture! Making this is a logistical nightmare. On top of that they are also much more expensive and require a lot of capital to place an entire production order for the next batch.

Tank leveling kit components are quick to manufacture and can be delivered on time.  

 

I will finish by saying thank you to all my customers for all of your support, thank you for your patience and keep checking back in with the webshop often - I will continue to do my best to deliver on our promise of high quality, model specific fitting parts!  

 

Cheers,

Jake

 

 

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