Sunday, August 10, 2008

My thoughts about HW, MB and Tomica/Tomy in Malaysia

Hi Yeo,

I find the stuff we are having here in Malaysia is not always the best than what we can find elsewhere or that the distributors here didn't research what will sell well and what will not.

I'll start with Mattel.
Earlier this year if you checked out the Hot Wheels stands the assortment is VERY disappointing. Check out any Jusco, Carrefour or any departmental stores for that matter and you can see A LOT of unsold cars such as the 1946 ford, blimp, draptor, and many other unsold cars. Simply put, Malaysian market does not like cars like the 1946 ford, ridiculous cars like the draptor, non-cars like the blimp and 1950s-60s pickup trucks .

What we like are Evos, Lotus, Ford Mustangs, Dodge Vipers, 350z, skylines, imprezzas... I'm sure the shop keepers and even those guys at big toy shops know what is hot (there is a rumour that some toy shop staff "sapu" the best cars). The thing is, Mattel should conduct a survey on what cars sell and what cars do not.

Think about it.

Let's say Mattel sell toy shop X with 20 cases of Hot Wheels. Before the cars are sold an inventory check is done to ascertain the number of "hot models" and "rubbish" models. After a certain period an inventory check is done again to see which are "hot" and which are "cold". This in turn will allow Mattel to produced the best ratio of "hot" to "cold" models which can sell the best. The benefits are:-
1) the shopkeeper won't be stuck with so much useless stock
2) which in turn will make stock move faster
3) and will make the shopkeeper buy more cases from Mattel
4) and then Mattel will make a handsome profit since their products move very fast

What happened was:-
1) Mattel sold A LOT of cases to shop keeper (buy 5 free 1?)
2) Shop keeper stuck with A LOT of unwanted cars
3) Cannot order more since there isn't any self space for unsold cars
4) Even can order also cannot order a lot, which in turn do not get the buy 5 free 1 discount
5) Mattel sensing a slow Malaysian market, export out the stocks
6) Which in turn make us (the customers) lose out when it comes to latest cars

Granted T-hunts are rare as they come per case and are case figures, but the availability of T-hunts will depend on how fast the stock moves. So if no new cases are ordered, then no T-hunts to be seen for a while.

For Matchbox, I don't quite understand why TRU do not carry the brand. Some TRUs sell the Matchbox airplanes, and that is about it. I used to prefer Matchbox compared to Hot Wheels since Matchbox cars are more realistic (the ones made in Macao last time were superb).

For Tomica, I truly believe Litt Tak is making a grave mistake increasing the price of ALL the tomica cars instead of the latest ones. Tomicas are already more expensive and harder to move than Hot Wheels and Matchbox, but increasing its already high price will make the stock move even slower.

My suggestion is that the old stocks which had the old price remain at the old price or if better lower the pricing even more. Those old stock in fact shouldn't have the new price since they were made and bought prior to the fuel price hike.

Simply put, toy shop X bought it years ago for RM 4 to be sold for RM 9. As years go by some of the stock still remain in his inventory. Things were moving slow but are moving nonetheless. Suddenly this year got fuel price hike, so hey, why not increase the price to RM 12?

Unfortunately this cause the stock to move even slower or none at all. Since they bought it for RM 4, there's no reason to raise it to RM 12 just because the fuel price increase since the stock is still on the store shelf and not in transit from any warehouse after the fuel hike!!! In fact now people are trying to get rid of excess stock not keeping them.

For Choro-Q it seems it is very very hard to find the hot models we want. I managed to get EVO X and Civic Type R from TRU SJ by sheer luck it being there. Elsewhere it is nowhere to be seen.

Also 1 complain, I dunno why, but my Tomica solar powered circular turn-table does not seem to be moving at all :( I am thinking to open it up and see it there is any fault in it.

Other complain is that why the cars in the designer's challenge line are not the same color as shown in the picture? :(

That ends my comments about the toy car market here.

Thank you,


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Anonymous said...

What an entry of a true collector. Totally agree with you that, the "rubbish" cause a lot of stuck for the sellers and the buyers. Hope that there is a Mattel guy read this entry.

About the Choro-Q, I think its situation in Vietnam is worse than Malaysia but the distributor in Vietnam has just released a new wave for Choro-Q. Let me check if any hot Choro-Q still available or not? ;)

aris tee said...

I agree with you on so many points man... you wrote out of my mind! (except maybe bout the 50's trucks)

They should do survey on models... And tomica shud keep the old ones at old price. Stocks are not moving at all!

Bro, my turntable's having the same prob. Do lemme know when/how you get urs moving when u manage to ya ;p