> It will be interesting to see how well Festool will continue to do with
> their marketing/supply/pricing policies. I would imagine they will be
> immutable until their market share sags. Then the beanie weenies won't
> be able to keep themselves away from "fixing" it.
The Germans march to their own drummer.
We have represented a German Company for many years and it is
sometimes a very interesting challenge.
They make excellent equipment, but some of their business decisions
leave me shaking my head sometimes.
Believe it or not, they sometimes have difficulty understanding that
in the USA, we operate simultaneously across 3 time zones for a large
portion of the business day.
It is quite normal to ship something from a warehouse on the East
coast by 3:00PM and have it on the job site on the West coast at the
start of business the following morning.
That is something that they sometimes have difficulty getting their
We just work at a much faster pace in the USA than tey do in much of
the rest of the world.
> So many retailers and online vendors carry Festool products and every
> one of them sells for the same price.
> Same with Leigh jigs and accessories.
> Same with Akeda but in this case there's only one vendor and that
> vendor sells the jig at a higher price than 'suggested retail'.
> What has happened to competitive pricing on these products?
Can't comment on anything but Festool.
Local representative, notice I didn't say dealer, here in SoCal has a
display but no inventory for sale..
Orders are placed with dealer who places them on Festool.
Equipment is shipped from Festool warehouse in Las Vegas.
Not sure when the money and the hardware change hands, but it borders
on an agent/manufacturer relationship which is quite legal.
OK, I'm somewhat more clear as to the MAP thing.
Now on to the final part.
How is it that a product as popular as the Akeda jig and accessories
are sold exclusively by a single retailer? It may be my naivete but
I'm thinking that if I was a woodworking type retailer I'd really want
to carry that product. How did Woodcraft get to be the 'chosen one'?
Might they have financial interest in Akeda beyond that of a retailer?
For a while, the Akeda was sold at woodworking shows as well, and at a
pretty good price, relative to Woodcraft. In the consolidation of
Delta/Porter-Cable, that group of traveling gypsies got shut down.
Akeda is a pretty small company that is doing well to have gotten their
product to market, and to continue to sell the tool, in spite of the
challenges they have faced. I have one of their jigs, and think it a
pretty good piece of work.
But they are just trying to get/keep going in a competitive space. I
wouldn't look for conspiracies.
Akeda's web site lists their jigs as being available at:
The Woodworking Shows
It doesn't even mention Woodcraft.
Try to buy one. <G> This past summer,I tried all but the shows and
Austin Hardwoods. Woodcraft at least listed it as out of stock. My
luck finding an Akeda actually drove me to the point of posting a
question here on the 'wreck inquiring if the product was still
available. A friendly Woodcraft employee answered my post, but by that
time I had already purchased a Leigh from Highland.
I was really interested in the Akeda, but my the search set off my
"future orphan tool" alert, tipping me into the D4R.
FWIW, I really like my Akeda. I do remember not so long ago, they had a fire
or explosion or something to that effect and production was shut down for
quite some time. Could be that's why you didn't find one.
The fire was in the early part of 2004. See an August 2004 Canadian
Woodworker article referring to the fire. It's about half way down the
page under "New Products". :
The fire was in a neighboring company in their building, and caused THEM
problems in the fighting of the fire, and restoration of the services to
the building. But that's been 2 -3 years ago. They've been back in
business since then. They sent me a part I needed, no charge, 18 months
ago, and were 'back to normal' then, supposedly.
I saw them at the woodshow at least a year ago...
That's an easy one. A manufacturer can only sell as much product as
they can make. If a reseller decides to purchase 100% of a
manufacturer's production capacity, then the manufacturer can cite
"availability" as the reason for rejecting purchase orders from other
Very often this sort of arrangement is by agreement between the
manufacturer and the reseller. Consider the situation where a
manufacturer wants to work through one exclusive distributor. That
distributor is then responsible for supplying all other resellers. The
distributor obtains exclusive rights to the whole world as their
territory in exchange for agreeing to buy everything that the
manufacturer can make. Perfectly legal. The manufacturer can cite "no
available territories" as the reason for rejecting purchase orders from
Woodcraft might have some financial interest in Akeda and therefore be
able to influence the channel strategy. Or, perhaps Akeda has their
hands full just trying to keep up with demand created by Woodcraft.
Who knows exactly what the situation is.
Caveat: Canada issues.
In my business, I spent a lot of time, over 20 years, and money
developing the market in this area. If my main supplier decided to
allow another fabricator to start competing with me, in my area, I
would have a few choices.
a) I could drop the bottom out my price so that the upstart would have
to do the same, but without the advantages that I have. He'd be short
b) I could drop that supplier completely and let them have the new guy
allll to themselves whilst (there is that word again) I start focussing
on highlighting another one of my suppliers.
One thing I cannot do, legally, is to start selling below my cost. That
would be considered an unfair business practice.
None of my suppliers will ever dictate my retail prices. But... at some
annual get-togethers, we chat amongst the fabricators and discuss what
the market is bearing.
The Combines Investigation Act dictates clearly what a
manufacture/distributor can do in terms of price-fixing. Henceforth (do
you believe THAT word?) Festool is nowhere to be found in Canada. I,
however, have decided that Festool's prices are commensurate with the
performance their tools deliver. therefore, I have no objection to
paying their prices. Fein has a similar marketing strategy as Festool,
but a dealer would have to be nuts not to ask full-pop for their tools.
They can get it, so why not? Fein does have Canadian representation. Go
figgur. Maybe Festool is afraid of Fein?
Maybe they are in Cahoots? (Cahoots, Alberta... a small town....never
r----> who wants to know, that if price fixing is illegal why ALL the
farking gas stations change prices at the same farking time? Huh? Huh?
I'm not certain these guys have similar marketing strategies since I
see the price of the Fein Turbo III ranging from $338. to $399.
whereas the price of the Festool Rotex 125 FEQ is $350. at any Festool
Sounds like the "Access Toyota" pricing.
All the Toyota dealers in a geographical area get together and set
no-haggle prices on the cars.
They then refuse to budge on the price, because they know that all the
dealers within a 500 mile radius all have the same prices.
That said, I wanted my Matrix enough to pay the price.
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