<BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by picframerz: Has anyone herad that Fletcher will be cutting mats and selling them via a web site direct?<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
It's true. You can see the site at www.framerselect.com. The requirement to buy is a tax re-sale certificate. They are going to offer 1200+ sku's of matboard. On my first attempt to design a mat, the first two Crescent boards I used were not ones they were stocking. I still can't get the pricing to unzip correctly. Maybe they will get this running...maybe not. You use the F-6100 software for designing your mats. I'm curious to John Ranes viewpoint on Fletcher's new adventure.
[This message has been edited by John Richards (edited August 07, 2001).]
Can you educate me, do other businesses in the US sell mats on the web to the framing trade.
Question,why be concerned that Fletcher Terry should enter what would appear to be a natural extension of there business after all they will have exactly the same business requirements that any other business would have that wants to offer this service, the only possible advantage or for that matter disadvantage will be that they also manufacture a mat cutting machine.
Yes, The Fletcher-Terry Company did launch on August 1st, FramerSolutions.com, a business to business portal for the professional picture framer.
And since John Richards asked for my viewpoint on the adventure, I'll be glad to obligue...........
First of all, FramerSolutions.com really isn't competition to the professional framer, as Dermot observes, but rather a new service. You might think of it as "a chop service of mats rather than moulding". As you must register to use the service, and provide a resale certificate (Faxed copy), you will see that it is designed to service the professional.
To get the numbers correct, FramerSolutions actually carries over 2000 sku's in stock and has next day access to 450+ additional. They plan on shipping completed orders within 2-5 days of ordering.
The pricing kit is not downloadable, but it is sent directly to the registered customer from the factory. The software can be downloaded (I just did this myself) at: FramerSolutions.com. You can also download the 15 page "User's Guide", but this requires the latest edition of Acrobat Reader (Also available as a download).
Go to FramerSolutions.com and have a look yourself, or take a look at it during the Atlanta show next month. It's not for everyone, but obviously will be useful for a number of framers:<UL TYPE=SQUARE>
<LI>New framers that can't afford a CMC
<LI>Framers that don't currently have the space in their shop for a CMC
<LI>Framers that do have a CMC, but are so short staffed, that it's easier to farm the work out (Super large projects).
<LI>Framers that need a matboard cut for next week, and their distributor is currently out of stock!
<LI>Framers who have their matcutter go on "vacation"..........
I can especially envision a scenerio where this particularly "fussy" framer (Still uses a manual cutter for quality reasons) and gets hit with a huge multiple-opening mat project on December 10th........25 mats, all 20x24 inches, with 18 openings each! Does this framer turn the job away, stay up all night, or log onto.......... FramerSolutions.com ?
I do not want to sound like a dinosaur but I do not have a CMC, I have a 54" Keeton cutter with a Hendrixson head and a offset guidance device. I would cut those multiple opening mats in no time. Anyways, I have a really good chiropractor!
Lets suppose you bought a Fletcher CMC and again lets suppose you were cutting specialty mat openings for the frame shops in your area that don't have a CMC.... Along comes Fletcher to compete with you. This is a senario that is actually happening. I do not believe that a supplier should compete with its customers.
This is not the case the new area of business Fletcher have entered is the same as any business that can supply mats or any service or product into your area, just the same as if you decided to expand the service of suppling mats into other areas that are outside your current locality.
Fletcher will still have all the overheads associated with the running and upkeep of the machines plus all the labor, rent's, overheads associated with the running of a business.
To suggest that just because they make a product/machine and cannot expand there business into new areas is suggesting that you yourself could not at any stage if you wanted to expand your business into other areas I.E. framing supplies, mouldings supplies, mats prepared for retail with bar codes, chop, and the list could go on.
As my mother always said competition is the spice of life.
<BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by picframerz: ............and again lets suppose you were cutting specialty mat openings for the frame shops in your area that don't have a CMC.... Along comes Fletcher to compete with you. This is a senario that is actually happening. I do not believe that a supplier should compete with its customers. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
So if I'm purchasing length moulding from a large importer/distributor and cut chops for other shops in my region, then that same distributor can't sell chop service in my area?
--Some framers will have CMC's; others won't!
--Some framers will have saws; others won't!
--Some framers will be heavily inventoried; while others won't!
These things will always be, while the industry changes and grows.
Moulding companies selling chops and a maufacturer entering into compeition with its customers is apples and oranges. We know that moulding companies will be selling in our area, but Fletcher is taking away a portion of my business I counted on when purchasing the CMC. How dare Fletcher sell cut mats to the industry using the same technology I invested thousands of dollars to purchase. If you think Fletchers system will keep the general public from signing on and getting wholesale pricing, think again. Tax ID numbers are a dime a dozen and easy to fake. When your customer walks in with a Fletcher mat to frame what will you do?
What is there to prevent another framer from buying a Fletcher 6100 and competing with you Picframez? It's like any other business if you are going to beat the competition you better have competitive prices and better service. As for the retail customer if they bring it in I will frame it. Some customers already bring matted art bought at arts festivals to be framed. I don't think that retail customers will buy mats from Fletcher. Sure they can come up with a way to buy but most of my customers want to see the true color and texture of the mat next to their art. I think this is why most internet framing ventures have failed. The retail framing customer wants to see the mats and frame in the flesh (fiber or whatever).
In my opinion it is wrong for the manufacturer to compete with its customer. However I guess there is no stopping them. One quick thought though is if a framer buys 6-10 $40.00 mats from Fletcher a month then the cost of a Wizard CMC will be palatable. My guess is that Wizard must be breaking out the champagne as we speak. I truly believe that Fletcher will choke on this venture and I will be happy to serve them the raw crow myself.
Picframerz-I don't mean to heap more grief on you, but I don't think Fletcher has any designs on your customer-the client that walks into your store. We call them retail sales.
I think, from John's post, that Fletcher is a B2B venture. Unless I am all wrong here or you purchased your CMC to do only B2B activity, Fletcher isn't competing with you. But if you did buy the machine to target other businesses, would have you been equally mad if Fletcher sold another machine in your market? Or would have you been upset if you were the second purchaser of this CMC and Fletcher said that only one person could have their product in any given market?
I think if you get back to the original reason you selected this machine, you'll probably see that those reasons haven't changed
<BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by picframerz:
.............If you think Fletchers system will keep the general public from signing on and getting wholesale pricing, think again. Tax ID numbers are a dime a dozen and easy to fake..............<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
Granted with any screening procedure, some people will find a way to slip through the net, however FramerSolutions.com will not only require the professional to provide documentation to substantiate legitimacy, but will also utilize manual editing of qualified accounts.
<BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Mel:........................Will this new service be announced formally to retail framers by way of a notice via the usual channels, e.g., their newsletter (can't recall the last time I got one), the trade magazines, a mailing?........... <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
Look for press releases in all the major framing & art publications soon. In addition, you will also find the FramerSolutions.com booth at the Atlanta Decor Expo - Booth #2408.
Timberwoman; we are a distributor in the middle. There have been a lot of valid points made from many of the Grumbler's and it's interesting to read the variety of responses, especially in regards to competition and the ability for other CMC owners to market their mat cutting to other custom framers. Fletcher sees this as an opportunity to duplicate the "chop service" that took off 10-12 years ago. As a distributor my only arguement in that regard is that it wasn't Pistorius, CTD, Omga or other saw manufacturer's that came up and implemented this revolution! As more manufactures go into direct competition with distributors for product and services and as they loosen their definition of what constitutes an "OEM" account, we will see more and more distributors fall by the wayside and competition, selection and a lot of services will be eliminated that currently benefit the custom framer. Granted many distributors (us included) make our mistakes and have our warts, but for the most part I think we try hard and have the custom framers interests at heart. It's just getting more difficult as our suppliers nibble away at our market share.
I must be stupid ? Fletcher selling mats only make them a distributor of Mats or am I missing something.
Guys I could sell frames or mats from Ireland into the US if I wanted to 2 to 3 days door to door.
Fletcher have just entered a new market selling mats anyone is free to do this, what's the big deal are they not allowed to develop there business as anyone of can or am I getting a big smell of sour grapes.
<BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Framar: I do not want to sound like a dinosaur but I do not have a CMC, I have a 54" Keeton cutter with a Hendrixson head and a offset guidance device. I would cut those multiple opening mats in no time. Anyways, I have a really good chiropractor!<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
Framar, I have a 1980 40" Keeton that uses single edge blades...maybe we dinosaurs know somethings them younguns don't!
Seth J. Bogdanove, CPF
22 years framing and still loving it!
As usual, the website is www.masterclamp.com