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Old 20th Feb 2018, 11:04 am   #61
pastyboy
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Default Re: Maplin stores

I am not surprised at this news, we have had a trade account for years with maplin. Apart from one account manager who left 3 years ago and was spot on (shame you left Martyn Scully) all I have had is incompetence. It took me 6 phone calls after placing an order to actually get it - they kept deleting the order !. Then they charged us £300 too much and it took numerous calls eventually getting onto the boss to get it resolved. then 3 weeks ago I phoned and my account manager had left, matey said he would prepare a quote and guess where it is ? nowhere to be seen - it was about a grands worth so not exactly chicken feed ! They are the only supplier that won't give us a credit account and that is purely as we are not a limited company. If I get a chance to order it will be on credit card in case they disappear with the proverbial **** !!!!
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Old 20th Feb 2018, 12:02 pm   #62
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Default Re: Maplin stores

Further analysis here: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2018/02..._the_business/
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Old 20th Feb 2018, 12:23 pm   #63
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Default Re: Maplin stores

(Sorry - my post crossed with G6Tanuki's)

Unfortunately the writing was on the wall in October:
https://www.theregister.co.uk/2017/1...ns_for_maplin/
With restriction of credit insurance Maplin's cashflow would have been very difficult to manage. Their suppliers would not have been able to insure bad debts from Maplin and so would demand quicker payments.
I loved having Maplin around for bits and pieces in the earlier days but a high-street reseller of single resistors was never viable. I have bought a few silly Christmas presents for my brother there more recently though!
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Old 20th Feb 2018, 3:36 pm   #64
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Default Re: Maplin stores

The business was sold to Rutland Partners for £85m in June 2014, a fraction of the £244m that fellow private equity house Montagu paid when it bought Maplin from hedge fund Graphene in 2011. Graphene had bought Maplin in 2001 for £42m so made a decent return on its investment.

So:

Bought by Graphene in 2001 for £42 mill. (A mangement buy-out by Maplin management).
Sold by Graphene to Montague in 2011 for £244 mill = £202 mill profit for Graphene.
Sold by Montague in 2014 to Rutland Partners for £85 mill = £159 mill loss by Montague.

Interesting to see its changing fortunes since its inception in a back bedroom and one shop at Westcliffe on Sea:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maplin_Electronics

I wonder what will happen to its Far East operations, based in Shenzen, China, which handles more than 500 suppliers and 5,000 buying items for the parent company?

Maplin makes a heathy 48% gross profit on turnover, but it's frittered away by operating costs incurred by High St and out-of-town shops. 215 shops, 2,500 staff.

Just unsustainable.

It remains to be seen if some asset stripper/venture capitalist or another does buy it after liquidation. I don’t think it will operate many, if any, shops – just an online presence like say Rapid Electronics, which - in 2012, became part of the Conrad Group, a pan-European electronics retailer which seems to be doing very well. In 2015 and 2017 the company was shortlisted for the Distributor of the Year at the Elektra European Electronics Industry Awards.

As much as anything, Maplin is trying to cater for a market that hardly exists and is well catered for online by outfits with lower operating costs and hence, lower prices.

Today’s generation has neither the time nor inclination for ‘hobbies’ – only ‘pastimes’ - things in which they take a fickle and fleeting interest, rather than being in it for the long haul. Not just our hobby – all hobbies. No-one has a 9 – 5 job any more, and for maybe 20 years, since internet took a hold, and ‘social media’ – Facebook, Snapchat, twitter, what’s app etc, along with smart-phones, gobbles up what little free time people might otherwise have had.

Heck people can’t even go out for a meal without taking a photo of what’s on their plate and uploading it to Facebook, and can’t go to the cinema or a concert without fiddling with their phones. Far too busy taking a pic of a plate of lukewarm spaghetti at Pizza Express or whatever and bunging it on Facebook. They're not going to start building a model steam engine or a doll's house or start tinkering with electronics in a garden shed any time soon.

It’s a miracle that Maplin have lasted as long as they have when considering other firms who are long gone but were once major players with full page ads in magazines that have also folded, (except EPE, which is a clone of Slicon Chip in Oz). Ambit/Cirkit, Home Radio, Electroniques, Watford Electronics, Electrovalue, Bonex…

Quite remarkable that in Oz, despite a population only a third of GB, Jaycar, along with Silicon Chip, have bucked the trend and seem to thrive.

Nothing will change.

'What is this life if, full of care, We have no time to stand and stare'...
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Old 20th Feb 2018, 3:42 pm   #65
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Default Maplin in race to save 2500 jobs.

From todays Daily Mail:
Electronics chain Maplin, which employs 2500 staff, was struggling to stay afloat last night.
Bosses are said to be desperately seeking cash to help the British retailer before it collapses in administration.
The company which has 211 stores across the country is the latest chain to be hit by the rise of on-line shopping.

Maplin made a loss of £15million last year.
It blames it's woes on the weak pound, rising costs and red tape.

DFWB.
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Old 20th Feb 2018, 3:48 pm   #66
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Default Re: Maplin in race to save 2500 jobs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by FERNSEH View Post
It blames it's woes on the weak pound, rising costs and red tape.
Translates roughly to "stupid business model in 2018".
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Old 20th Feb 2018, 3:52 pm   #67
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Default Re: Maplin in race to save 2500 jobs.

On the plus side, if they go down the tubes, there may be some component bargains to be had....assuming they have anything of use to us.....!
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Old 20th Feb 2018, 4:15 pm   #68
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Default Re: Maplin in race to save 2500 jobs.

That was my first thought
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Old 20th Feb 2018, 4:33 pm   #69
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Default Re: Maplin in race to save 2500 jobs.

Quote:
It blames it's woes on the weak pound, rising costs and red tape.
NG33L or NF94C?
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Old 20th Feb 2018, 4:34 pm   #70
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Default Re: Maplin stores

They remind me very much of Woolworth's: I haven't been in for years and on the last few occasions when I have they haven't had what I want — they either don't sell it or it's out-of-stock.

Again like Woolworth's they seem to try to sell a few bits of a wide range of areas. For instance, as well as components they sell some bits for computers but only a restricted amount at at higher prices than computer specialists.

I'm not sure that I agree about nobody wanting electronic parts these days as there are plenty of people interested in Aurduinos, Raspberry Pis, CNC machines, 3D printers &c. They still need some traditional bits to make their projects work but are probably the sort of people who would automatically buy on-line.
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Old 20th Feb 2018, 5:10 pm   #71
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Default Re: Maplin stores

The last things I bought from Maplin were, in fact a Raspberry Pi 3 and an Arduino Micro. I don't know anywhere else that I'll be able to just walk in and buy such things now.
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Old 20th Feb 2018, 5:19 pm   #72
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Default Re: Maplin stores

The problem is I can get both of them tomorrow for less money. Or even better if I thought about it before 1pm I can get them the same day on amazon for less money. And neither of those options requires leaving my door, incurring transport costs or incidental costs along the way.

If I want to go to my local maplin it will cost me approximately £4 in fuel and parking or £3 in bus fair and will take two hours.
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Old 20th Feb 2018, 5:47 pm   #73
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Default Re: Maplin stores

Quote:
Originally Posted by SiriusHardware View Post
The last things I bought from Maplin were, in fact a Raspberry Pi 3 and an Arduino Micro. I don't know anywhere else that I'll be able to just walk in and buy such things now.

Looking on their website just now, I would have to drive 40 miles to walk in to a Maplin shop and buy the only Raspberry Pi they have in stock there. They could send me one or more by courier, or I could order now and collect in 5-7 days.

On the other hand, I could buy an Arduino Micro at my nearest shop but if I wanted more than one I'd have to do a tour of South Wales and the West Country. They apparently have none they could send me.

It shows the difficulties in having your stock in hundreds of places round the country.
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Old 20th Feb 2018, 5:58 pm   #74
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Default Re: Maplin in race to save 2500 jobs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by G0HZU_JMR View Post
Quote:
It blames it's woes on the weak pound, rising costs and red tape.
NG33L or NF94C?
nice one Jeremy
We'll have to use 494-398 in future.
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Old 20th Feb 2018, 6:32 pm   #75
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Default Re: Maplin stores

I'm not surprised they're heading for the breakers. Their prices for everyday items are stupid. Who is going to buy a couple of F-connectors from Maplin when they are asking for £2.49 each? The same item from CPC or RS will cost just 16 pence each! Same goes for audio leads - they want £14 for a flashily-packed twin phono lead when a decent quality one from somewhere else is about one third the price. The last few times I've visited to stock up on things like copper board, LED's and plastic boxes has seen me come away with nothing as they are just not on the shelves any more. If they go bust it's their own fault.
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Old 20th Feb 2018, 6:35 pm   #76
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Smile Re: Maplin stores

I would also add the role Ebay has played the last few years in buying materials for projects. I rarely use my local one in Rugby even though it is only a mile away due to poor stock levels.

The ease of buying components in decent quantity (i.e not 2 1N4001 diodes in stock!!) the vast range of components, reasonably cheap prices and assemblies available and in some cases next day delivery (many cases free delivery as well) must have seriously dented Maplins share of the shrinking electronics hobbyists demand.

Christopher Capener
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Old 20th Feb 2018, 6:51 pm   #77
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Default Re: Maplin stores

I for one really hope they stay on the high street, I enjoy going in my local one looking for new ideas and yes I do buy from them.

I generally find they are very helpful ,unlike certain other stores whose only aim is to flog u things you don't want and an extended warranty you don't need .
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Old 20th Feb 2018, 7:23 pm   #78
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Default Re: Maplin stores

I can't see a buyer wanting what is there at the moment, they have overstretched themselves with too many stores and I see them in a similar position to Radio Shack in the US, the only way forward is to rapidly dump the unprofitable stores with high rents and salvage what is left to produce a viable company. Liquidation and sell off whats viable. The best recent example of this was Jessops the photo retailer, which after a liquidation has come back as a viable concern with business support from Peter Jones.
I fear we are now going to have to rely on online for our parts and kit etc., except where a few small independents survive. I personally find it increasingly viable to buy small parts from China direct, cheap and quite quick.
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Old 20th Feb 2018, 7:27 pm   #79
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Default Re: Maplin stores

If Maplin do go under, I'll be first in line for 'closeout' bargains - a couple of decades back when Tandy went-under I scored myself a shopping-trolley-full of stuff like 5A 12V "CB" power-supplies, a couple of decent stereo receivers [one of which I still have], cables, their "Minimus" speakers [which pack a lot of oomph into a nice diecast case] and a couple of armfuls of blister-packed ICs/resistors/capacitors/diodes. Somewhere in the attic I've still got a load of 'Archer' LT44/LT700 audio transformers.

When the mighty fail, the small get to plunder the corpse.
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Old 20th Feb 2018, 7:32 pm   #80
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Default Re: Maplin stores

Quote:
Originally Posted by chriswood1900 View Post
The best recent example of this was Jessops the photo retailer, which after a liquidation has come back as a viable concern with business support from Peter Jones.
I totally had failed to recognise that Jessops still existed. I suspect that 99% of the serious-spending 'prosumer' photocommunity [which transitioned to digital a decade before Jessops went under] are in a similar position [ last big lens I bought was a Sigma and I got it from a dealer in Finland]
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