The man behind plans to launch a new consumer-facing discount website is adamant that his business will help IT resellers rather than hinder them.
It’s a Bargain CEO, Terry Newby, now has 38 franchises up for grabs covering everything from fishing and furniture to toys and travel.
As previously reported in ARN, It’s a Bargain’s key differentiator for consumers is that it will only sell new products with full manufacturer warranties at 20 per cent lower than the recommended retail price.
In order to do this, its electronics franchises — which will cover audio visual, photography, mobile phones and PDAs, computer/office equipment and computer/video games — will be sourcing end-of-line stock from the IT and consumer electronics channels.
The IT channel has so far chosen to view the electronics categories as a potential competitor, rather than as a way of moving excess stock, but Newby insists this is not the case.
“We’re not going head-to-head with mainstream resellers because superseded product is our main thrust,” Newby said. “We just want to be seen as a service for those that want to use it.
“Let’s say a reseller has 50 laptops that have not sold and wants to start ordering a newer model.
“We can put the superseded stock on It’s a Bargain and act as a sales facilitator by advertising their availability across Australia and New Zealand.
“But the reseller keeps hold of the stock and is still free to sell it — all we ask for if that happens is 24 hours notice so that we are not advertising products that are no longer available.”
Newby was quick to dissociate It’s a Bargain from other e-tail ventures such as dStore, which he said had struggled because they carried stock.
One of the most important features of his proposed business, he said, was its virtual warehousing.
Working as a facilitator would slash its storage and transportation costs, Newby said.
Whether or not the channel will embrace It’s a Bargain remains to be seen but Newby’s immediate priority is finding the right people to head up the franchises. In order to do that, he would be prepared to accept a 50 per cent payment upfront from potential franchisees, with the remainder to be paid within 12 months.
“Getting the right person is the most important factor and splitting the categories further allows us to be far more targeted,” he said.
“We are providing a service for those who can’t get rid of stock but must first find the people capable of locating these products.”
An ideal candidate for any of the various electronics franchises, Newby said, would be somebody that had owned a shop or worked for a distributor but had now retired.
“Maybe they are getting bored with playing golf and want to get back into business without having to go through the hassle of setting up another shop,” he said.
What it costs
The It’s a Bargain franchises are priced as follows: