BUSINESS AND MARKETING: Business and Marketing Forum Business and Marketing Articles

Another One Bites the Dust #2

COW Forums : Business & Marketing

<< PREVIOUS   •   FAQ   •   VIEW ALL   •   PRINT   •   NEXT >>
Neil HurwitzAnother One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 14, 2010 at 12:08:29 am

Well Guys,
Another two NYC Houses are going out.
Check the JosephFinn site if you want more info
Something is definitly happening to the basic economics
of the industry. Awhile ago under the same post heading I
beleive Terence said he would give us an informative rundown
on a Post House in CA that Failed. Did I miss it?


Return to posts index

Mads Nybo JørgensenRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 14, 2010 at 12:46:17 am

The Club in Covent Garden, London is up for sale:
http://www.broadcastnow.co.uk/technology/the-club-for-sale-as-work-stalls/5...



All the Best
Mads
London, UK

Here used to be a big video - now you can watch another one here:
http://www.macmillion.com/showreel.htm

Mac Million Ltd. - HD Production & Editing
Blog: http://macmillionltd.blogspot.com


Return to posts index

Mark SuszkoRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 14, 2010 at 2:07:44 pm

NYC is going to see some natural contraction now that "Law and Order" is done. That show was feeding a LOT of people.


Return to posts index


David Roth WeissRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 14, 2010 at 2:34:16 pm

Gentlemen, let's face it, the world economy and the U.S economy in particular are in shambles, and there is a great deal of fallout and shakeout that's already happened, with much more to come.

The largest corporations in the U.S. are firing their lowest tier employees by the thousands and retiring or "job eliminating" their most experienced and most highly paid long-term management teams on the other end of the spectrum as well. What those companies are doing internally, they are also doing externally, so you can and should expect to see companies providing outside support, such as those dedicated to video production and post-production, dropping like flies.

And, anyone who tells you otherwise, or anyone building a new facility, is most likely going to be in for a rude awakening, no matter how many new directions they're spreading into.


David Roth Weiss
Director/Editor/Colorist
David Weiss Productions, Inc.
Los Angeles

POST-PRODUCTION WITHOUT THE USUAL INSANITY ™

EPK Colorist - UP IN THE AIR - nominated for six academy awards

A forum host of Creative COW's Apple Final Cut Pro, Business & Marketing, Indie Film & Documentary, and Film History & Appreciations forums.


Return to posts index

Mark SuszkoRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 14, 2010 at 3:23:02 pm

When the dinosaurs fell, they opened a niche for tiny, fast and entrepreneurial little mammals, some of which evolved into... us.



Return to posts index

David Roth WeissRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 14, 2010 at 3:50:50 pm

[Mark Suszko] "When the dinosaurs fell, they opened a niche for tiny, fast and entrepreneurial little mammals, some of which evolved into... us. "

And then the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico drowned many of them who weren't paying attention, even as the more pragmatic among them tried to warn them of the changing tide.

David Roth Weiss
Director/Editor/Colorist
David Weiss Productions, Inc.
Los Angeles

POST-PRODUCTION WITHOUT THE USUAL INSANITY ™

EPK Colorist - UP IN THE AIR - nominated for six academy awards

A forum host of Creative COW's Apple Final Cut Pro, Business & Marketing, Indie Film & Documentary, and Film History & Appreciations forums.


Return to posts index


Neil HurwitzRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 14, 2010 at 4:00:03 pm

Mark,
These two companies in NYC were not Dinosaurs
but pretty much up to date post-houses. No aging
GVG switchers and D2's But more or less up to date facilities.
Just look at their equipment rosters.

Walter,
Good luck with your new build out. It's nice to see someone
making progress in this tough economy. My only advice would be
that I wouldn't spend a single penny on a build out UNLESS you
owned the building. One of the biggest reasons for houses
closing here in NYC (mine included) was that they
come to the end of their leases and run up against the landlord.
Landlords aren't stupid, they see an expensive build out and
know how much it's gonna cost you too move. They have all the chips
and the tenant either winds up giving a big chunk, if not all
of their profits to them or moves (also expensive) or folds.
I know of one house in NYC that doesn't care how they do
because they own the five story building they occupy and the
rent of the High End Sushi Bar on the first floor
covers their overhead. Another big house in NYC struggled for years
and then sold their building 3 years after purchasing it and
turned an 11 Million Dollar profit. (more than their previous
25 years of profit) So Hold Off on your move until you can buy
the Building, It will be your retirement account.
Once again Best of Luck

Neil Hurwitz


Return to posts index

walter biscardiRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 14, 2010 at 4:12:02 pm

[Neil Hurwitz] "So Hold Off on your move until you can buy
the Building, It will be your retirement account.
Once again Best of Luck"


We will own the land and the building. We're taking advantage of this down market and picking up almost 2 acres of land that we would never have been able to afford even two years ago. It has never made sense for us to lease, even with equipment. We own every piece of equipment in our shop outright and the company is completely debt free. So we've been very good at building very slowly and when this down market came along, it was the perfect opportunity to move forward with the next phase. The entire build will be up to 50% lower than it would have been even 3 years ago.

There will be much more about this entire build on my blog as soon as we start moving dirt. Let's just say I followed my own advice about "Starting and Running a Business" :-)

Walter Biscardi, Jr.
Editor, Colorist, Director, Writer, Consultant, Author, Chef.
HD Post and Production
Biscardi Creative Media

"Foul Water, Fiery Serpent" featuring Sigourney Weaver coming soon.

Blog Twitter Facebook


Return to posts index

Neil HurwitzRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 14, 2010 at 5:36:02 pm

Walter,
You are well positioned then, Good Luck
I agree with all of your plan, However I do
believe there is a good argument for leasing equipment
(dollar buy-out only)
as it spreads the cost of ownership over the projected use of the
equipment. In this industry financing should never go longer than 3
years. Just curious here, But the last time I did a build
(Leasehold Improvement)I was informed that I could only
deduct 1/39 a year as Federal Income Tax depreciation.
Is this still the case?


Neil Hurwitz


Return to posts index


walter biscardiRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 14, 2010 at 5:46:00 pm

[Neil Hurwitz] "But the last time I did a build
(Leasehold Improvement)I was informed that I could only
deduct 1/39 a year as Federal Income Tax depreciation.
Is this still the case?"


Don't know. We're a commercial company in a business park.

Walter Biscardi, Jr.
Editor, Colorist, Director, Writer, Consultant, Author, Chef.
HD Post and Production
Biscardi Creative Media

"Foul Water, Fiery Serpent" featuring Sigourney Weaver coming soon.

Blog Twitter Facebook


Return to posts index

Neil HurwitzRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 15, 2010 at 2:18:46 pm

Hi Walter,
You should consult with your Tax Accountant about the
different ways to charge off or capitalize your cash out
for your upcoming build. The way things are intially set up
will have long range consequences on you financial reporting
and Taxes. As an example, The building might have to be depreciated
of 39 years, so if you spend 390,000 on it, you could claim a
depreciation expense of only 10,000 per year. However
if you can legally reclassify 100,000 of that as an Equipment
purchase then you could depreciate it (the 100,000) over 5 years
and get an extra 20,000 in yearly expense.
This might be important because after the build out
you might find that it's difficult to run as lean as you would like, There might be unforseen expenses and that extra
depreciation which would leave more cash in your
pocket would be handy. I suppose my point being that if
you don't know what the various Local, State, Federal laws
presently are regarding Depreciation and Build Out expenses
It's better to investigate now than after the fact.
Best of Luck

Neil Hurwitz


Return to posts index

Ron LindeboomRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 15, 2010 at 3:34:26 pm

[Neil Hurwitz] "As an example, The building might have to be depreciated of 39 years, so if you spend 390,000 on it, you could claim a depreciation expense of only 10,000 per year. However if you can legally reclassify 100,000 of that as an Equipment purchase then you could depreciate it (the 100,000) over 5 years and get an extra 20,000 in yearly expense."

I wish there was a way that we could apply this to some of our recent legal expenses. A few years back, a company that tried to highjack our name in this arena precipitated a lengthy legal battle that cost us $140,000 by the time it was done. The IRS told us we could only write it off over a 15 year period. Say freaking what?$#@!? 15 years? You have to be kidding, right? The accountants told us they weren't and so that is what we are doing.

I told our lawyers that they and their colleagues need to get off their duffs and do some lobbying in their own self interests because we will be far less likely to spend a bunch of money in a legal fight knowing that we can expect a 15 year amortization schedule.

But hey, at least the IRS always wants their money right now. Now that's something you can always count on...

Ron Lindeboom


Return to posts index


Steve WargoRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 16, 2010 at 7:09:56 am

The IRS is the same unit that will be collecting our payments under the new Health Care Bill. I am moving to Costa Rica.

Steve Wargo
Tempe, Arizona
It's a dry heat!

Sony HDCAM F-900 & HDW-2000/1 deck
5 Final Cut (not quite PRO) systems
Sony HVR-M25 HDV deck
2-Sony EX-1 HD .

Ask me how to Market Yourself using Send Out Cards


Return to posts index

walter biscardiRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 18, 2010 at 12:26:01 am

Hi Neil,

Thanks for all the information. We have been in contact with our CPA and one of the sweet things about Georgia is the 30% tax break for the media industry and our expansion will be able to take advantage of some of that. That's the big reason why we have had something like 120 movies made here in the past two years, Screen Gems is opening sound stages and just yesterday another county announced the construction of sound stages. Georgia is just sweet on media production right now!


Walter Biscardi, Jr.
Editor, Colorist, Director, Writer, Consultant, Author, Chef.
HD Post and Production
Biscardi Creative Media

"Foul Water, Fiery Serpent" featuring Sigourney Weaver coming soon.

Blog Twitter Facebook


Return to posts index

Neil HurwitzRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 18, 2010 at 1:11:59 pm

Hi Walter,
I'm happy to contribute any way I can. Thanx
You bring up an interesting component to success that
till now hasn't been mentioned, the effect of Local and
State level taxation on companies. I've spent my carrer
in NYC which I can only describe as Hostile to Business.
For example, Here in NYC we have a commercial rent/occupancy
tax of 7.5%. So if your rent is 5,000 per month you have to write
an additional check to NYC for 375.00 Every Month. This is on top
of the Real Estate tax the owner of the building pays.
If your company owns the building and pays no rent you
still pay the occupancy tax which is calculated by the gov't
as if you were a rental tenant. It's just nuts. I know of no other place that has this tax.
When my shop was going balls out
I lusted after the Sales Tax remittances,
lots of times it was greater than my salary and perks.
It seems to me that your home state
has identified a possible area of job creation/relocation and
has made an effort to go for it. I wonder if a Law and Order
Atlanta is in the works.

Neil Hurwitz


Return to posts index


walter biscardiRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 14, 2010 at 3:32:25 pm

[David Roth Weiss] "What those companies are doing internally, they are also doing externally, so you can and should expect to see companies providing outside support, such as those dedicated to video production and post-production, dropping like flies.

And, anyone who tells you otherwise, or anyone building a new facility, is most likely going to be in for a rude awakening, no matter how many new directions they're spreading into."


Thanks for the confidence David! Of course you know zilch about our company, how it operates and what we have on tap through 2014, but that's ok. We'll keep plowing through with all the documentaries and television series in the works and make ends meet somehow......

Walter Biscardi, Jr.
Editor, Colorist, Director, Writer, Consultant, Author, Chef.
HD Post and Production
Biscardi Creative Media

"Foul Water, Fiery Serpent" featuring Sigourney Weaver coming soon.

Blog Twitter Facebook


Return to posts index

David Roth WeissRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 14, 2010 at 3:42:10 pm

[walter biscardi] "you know zilch about our company, how it operates and what we have on tap through 2014"

Let's revisit this subject in 2014. That's a long way off, so your five year plan just might not coincide with reality by that time, but good luck.

David Roth Weiss
Director/Editor/Colorist
David Weiss Productions, Inc.
Los Angeles

POST-PRODUCTION WITHOUT THE USUAL INSANITY ™

EPK Colorist - UP IN THE AIR - nominated for six academy awards

A forum host of Creative COW's Apple Final Cut Pro, Business & Marketing, Indie Film & Documentary, and Film History & Appreciations forums.


Return to posts index

walter biscardiRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 14, 2010 at 3:48:25 pm

[David Roth Weiss] "Let's revisit this subject in 2014. That's a long way off, so your five year plan just might not coincide with reality by that time, but good luck."

Reality is you only have one life to live on this earth. Our venture might succeed, it might fail. We've done the research, we've done the work for the past 9 years to get to this point. If we go bust, we go bust, but we have structured this entire purchase and construction in such a way that it is almost $2,000/month cheaper than if we leased the same amount of space.

We're going to give this our best shot and if that isn't good enough, we go bust and I go back to freelance editing or any myriad of other skills I have. But I'll never have to ask myself, "What if?" It would be much worse for me if we never even made this attempt and just wondered for the rest of our lives what might have been....

Walter Biscardi, Jr.
Editor, Colorist, Director, Writer, Consultant, Author, Chef.
HD Post and Production
Biscardi Creative Media

"Foul Water, Fiery Serpent" featuring Sigourney Weaver coming soon.

Blog Twitter Facebook


Return to posts index

walter biscardiRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 14, 2010 at 2:24:05 pm

I just knock on wood everyday that we're lucky enough to be breaking ground on a new 6,000 sq. ft facility. It's a tough market, but we're fortunate in spreading our work around in a lot of different directions.

Walter Biscardi, Jr.
Editor, Colorist, Director, Writer, Consultant, Author, Chef.
HD Post and Production
Biscardi Creative Media

"Foul Water, Fiery Serpent" featuring Sigourney Weaver coming soon.

Blog Twitter Facebook


Return to posts index

Mark SuszkoRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 14, 2010 at 6:02:53 pm

By "dinosaur" I meant in size and thus the amount of capital investment, personnel/operating costs and debt tied up in it. A post company doing very high-dollar high-profile work may not look as good in the accounting books as it does in industry magazines. The high-profile work is often done at a loss or break-even just for the PR value of it. And don't think agencies don't know this.

As far as New York, Chicago, or any large major city, often a particular business is not worth as much as the real estate they occupy. I think most of the major post houses I knew in my college days are now condos off Michigan ave. If the building owner can make more per square foot without you, he'll drive you out. A fast and nimble little mammal of a business, with an eye for operating on high margin and low debt, can survive where a dinosaur can't afford to keep the lights on. Biscardi may be getting around this by owning his property.

I think the trend over the next few years is a repeat of the boutique post movement of the late 80's/early 90's. Small, purpose-built, niche operations designed to run hyper-lean, with most non-essentials rented on demand or leased, populated by a small staffing core, bolstered on a per-job basis by hungry freelancers.

Or using another metaphor, switching from a aircraft carrier strike group of an organization, to a single submarine.


Return to posts index

walter biscardiRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 14, 2010 at 6:22:59 pm

[Mark Suszko] "Biscardi may be getting around this by owning his property."

We're very fortunate to get around this by being in a position to buy land at a time when the market is down. Also, the metal building company, contractors, everything is marked down now due to the economy.



[Mark Suszko] "I think the trend over the next few years is a repeat of the boutique post movement of the late 80's/early 90's. Small, purpose-built, niche operations designed to run hyper-lean, with most non-essentials rented on demand or leased, populated by a small staffing core, bolstered on a per-job basis by hungry freelancers."

Absolutely on target. This is precisely how we've built ourselves from a spare bedroom in my house to the operation we are now and will be shortly. Except we've purchased the essentials, and instead of focusing on a niche operation, we are a very broad operation that can complete all aspects of post production and delivery. Even though we're moving into a larger space, we're still going to be a very lean operation with the ability to scale up and down the production team as required for a project.

The big key in this major move we're going to be doing is the ability to maintain all our rates status quo. In fact our rates haven't changed for years and I really don't foresee a need to change them anytime soon.

In a nutshell you've described the development and future of our company.

Walter Biscardi, Jr.
Editor, Colorist, Director, Writer, Consultant, Author, Chef.
HD Post and Production
Biscardi Creative Media

"Foul Water, Fiery Serpent" featuring Sigourney Weaver coming soon.

Blog Twitter Facebook


Return to posts index

Nick HassonRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 14, 2010 at 8:38:01 pm

[walter biscardi] "[Mark Suszko] "I think the trend over the next few years is a repeat of the boutique post movement of the late 80's/early 90's. Small, purpose-built, niche operations designed to run hyper-lean, with most non-essentials rented on demand or leased, populated by a small staffing core, bolstered on a per-job basis by hungry freelancers." "


This is how i built my company, Its a two person operation and as i need more people I hire them freelance. I pay them good wages and they always want to return. The company was built on cash, we only buy things cash or if a job requires it and will pay for it.

2010 is a tough year. This years revenue will be a little more than half of the years before. I'm mostly feature based, and we are feeling the effects of writers/actors strikes of years before. And the effects of this economy. If I had actual over head, I'd be out of biz. The only overheard we have is Rent and in L.A. it's much cheaper to rent than buy. I'm sure atlanta is a different beast.

Everyone has different challenges for the niche they are in, as well as the market they are in. I hope we all are here in 2014, making money, enjoying life.


Kudos to Walter! You will never have to ask "What if". Thats the way life is meant to be lived. No one every got anywhere by playing it safe all the time!








Nick Hasson
Smoke/Color
http://www.niceedits.com


Return to posts index

walter biscardiRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 15, 2010 at 4:19:18 am

[Nick Hasson] "
Kudos to Walter! You will never have to ask "What if". Thats the way life is meant to be lived. No one every got anywhere by playing it safe all the time!"


Thanks Nick! It's funny my wife and I were talking about this thread tonight while waiting for Conan O'Brien to take the stage (AWESOME show btw) and she noted that companies who grow the largest are those who build up and move forward during a down market. So when the market starts to come back, you're already ahead of the competition who now has to move forward paying 2 to 3 times the costs.

Again, I have no idea where this will lead, but we've been fortunate to really build our company slowly to be in a position to take advantage of the down market. At the end of the day we're going to own almost 2 acres of land and a 6,000 square foot building with a huge kitchen, big wooded backyard for Molly and indoor / outdoor basketball courts. If the shop doesn't work out, we'll just turn it into our new home..... :-)




Walter Biscardi, Jr.
Editor, Colorist, Director, Writer, Consultant, Author, Chef.
HD Post and Production
Biscardi Creative Media

"Foul Water, Fiery Serpent" featuring Sigourney Weaver coming soon.

Blog Twitter Facebook


Return to posts index

Robbie CoblentzRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 15, 2010 at 5:59:55 pm

I have to agree with Walter. We bought a 9200 square building last year, did a 5000 sq. foot build out and populated the rest with tenants. Our diversification was into commercial real estate, away from media production. I have other people to help pay my mortgage payment.

Like Walter, the bubble burst allowed us to look at properties that we couldn't even think about toughing before.



Return to posts index

grinner hesterRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 14, 2010 at 8:01:51 pm

You're not just now realizing we are in a depression are you?
This, of course, is why so many of us are evolving how we do business. Things change. If your company doesn't evolve with it, it's temporary. I don't see big old school post houses shuttin' down shop as a bad thing.



Return to posts index

Neil HurwitzRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 14, 2010 at 10:46:08 pm

"I don't see big old school post houses shuttin' down shop as a bad thing."

Why would you say this? Those shops have People with Families
working in them. Where is your humanity?
It's a bad thing when an Industry shrinks.
I am very happy for those here who are doing well and have
wished them luck. But no matter what their business plan is
they have to ask themselves Just how many heart attacks (clients)
are they away from the dust heap?

You want to see the best if humanity but 10 people in a Box
with enough food for 8.

Neil Hurwitz


Return to posts index

grinner hesterRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 15, 2010 at 12:02:51 am

You ever move on to another job that didn't result in a five figure raise? Everyone but the management will move on to bigger better things. I'm happy for em. Are you not?
Where is your humanity? ;)



Return to posts index

Rick TurnersRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 15, 2010 at 1:59:47 am

There isn't enough jobs available for the amount of trained post professionals out there.

What will this idle 60,000+ jobless post pros worldwide do? Create their own companies.

They'll all drive each other out of business.


Return to posts index

Ned MillerRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 15, 2010 at 2:25:33 am

When in doubt I always return to the age old entreprenuerial expression: "It ain't what you make, it's what you keep."

I am anti-overhead nowadays and fortunately when the meltdown hit (The Lehmann's weekend) my office lease was up. This is a good time to for us turtles to keep one's head in the shell. If people have the cash to buy and expand God bless em. But I'd keep it in the mattress. I don't trust that the clients we rely on may be there for the long run. As a freelancer I work for companies that are humming along and then WHAM!

But if you get it in writing and can financially project for several years you are extremely fortunate. Just don't guarantee personally is my opinion.

Ned Miller
Chicago Videographer
http://www.nedmiller.com
http://www.bizvideo.com


Return to posts index

grinner hesterRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 15, 2010 at 2:39:50 pm

I don't see that. No less video is being made than last year or ten years ago. Quite the opposite. Yes, they'll all go on to start their own companies or partner up to do it. I still see multiplying income and gaining creative freedoms as a good thing.



Return to posts index

Neil HurwitzRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 15, 2010 at 2:03:52 pm

Hi Grin,
You must be living in some alternate universe if
you think that everybody in this industry who has lost their job
has been able to just get another one with a 10,000 dollar raise.
I know of a few really, really experienced, Emmy award winners
who have been asked to take a 5 figure cut. This greatly affects
their lives and families. I am not happy when anyone loses
their job, But it seems that there are those who still believe
that those that can't afford bread, should buy cake.
I for one can't understand why the 10% of unemployed simply
don't go out and get jobs with a 5 figure increase over their last
position? Can you?
I ask again, Where is your humanity? Or maybe there isn't any
on your planet.


Neil Hurwitz


Return to posts index

grinner hesterRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 15, 2010 at 2:47:14 pm

Maybe I take strive for granted. Every job I've ever left, be it due to boredom or being laid off by a company that lost focus, resulted in a five figure raise. I gave myself a six figure raise when the last company I staffed for folded. Again, I'm happy for those moving onward and upward and I don't mind seeing 80s mentality post houses make more room for those of us who evolve with the industry.
Cakes are for celebrations. Yes, most of the ones you are worried about, or pretending to be, had cake last night.




Return to posts index

Fernando MolRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 15, 2010 at 3:26:07 pm

I think uncertainty is the name of the ghost here. The false difference between clear hope and dark realism. The ultimate true is that nobody know whats next, we can only be sure to do our best each time.

In Mexico we read everyday in the newspapers that the government is very proud of our progress, but the streets are burning in violence and people are still loosing jobs. But I still see people celebrating life, eating well and watching football. A local tragedy transforms in a joke in a couple of days, sometimes a couple of hours. And while many friends are closing his business gates, others are opening champaign. Nobody is really starving to death, it's just that the money is changing hands. Hard for some, luck for others. Let's just open our eyes and adapt.

*Always share a link to your site and rate the posts. This is a free service for you and for us.


Return to posts index

cowcowcowcowcow
Bob ZelinRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 16, 2010 at 2:11:29 am

As always, I will wind up offending certain people when I make this comment. My business is building new facilities, and upgrading existing facilties. I certainly see companies going out of business all the time, and these guys say "the business is over". But somehow, I am employed, because there are NEW COMPANIES that have new business, and existing companies that are doing VERY WELL, and are growing their companies. I just wired up a NEW AVID NITRIS DX system for Ko-Mar Productions in West Palm Beach, FL today - their FIFTH AVID system, and they are booked solid, and cannot handle the work - yet I see plenty of other companies down here that are collapsing.

It's very hard for a business owner who is not doing well to see his own business collapse, while somehow, others are making a killing and expanding their business, and buying new equipment. AVID makes millions, Sony makes millions, AJA makes millions, and when you put on your TV at night, there are NEW SHOWS on, and someone is doing this work. Someone is buying this new equipment.

I have said this for years - there could be a literal depression just like in the 1920's in the US, and you know what, people would come home from the unemployment line, and put on their TV.

Bob Zelin




Return to posts index

Ned MillerRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 16, 2010 at 3:31:02 am

I came to this forum originally to pick up marketing tips when I was slow and to compare trends in my geographic area with peers in other parts of the country. However, this thread is odd because it ignores the 800 lb gorilla in the room or forum: THERE IS NO WAY TO UNDERSTAND THE FINANCIAL SITUATION AND RISK LEVEL OF OTHERS IN OUR BIZ.

It is very hard for us to compare our financial situations because we are all coming at it from different circumstances. Who knows why someone can buy a building without a loan while others are struggling, given similar circumstances? I have been doing this for a long time and have observed that many people in our biz are on a different plateau than the rest of us financially, so why compare what works for one in terms of investing, than another? Some people are able to take on investment risk because there may be a safety net.

Recently I visited or communicated with a few guys who were my mentors and are 15-20 years older than me and now comfortably in retirement. When we were working together they seemed "normal" financially. Now I know that the majority of these successful guys, or ones I thought "made it on their own", or wanted all to believe they did, 1) either came from family money, 2) their wife came from family money, 3) a combination of both or 4) the wife made a very high income. It is one or a combo of those four factors. I see it in our biz quite a lot, from the young kids getting REDS or DSLR packages for graduation all the way to my competitors.

So let's kill this thread, there's no way to know why someone has money to risk. I know people in the biz who are struggling that all they have to do is outlive their parents. I also know people who start studios who have investors and angels behind them, they personally don't have the money but always appear as they do.

Perhaps people making major capital investments in studio real estate did make it on their own but it is non-sensical to weigh their investment decisions because some people have deeper pockets than others for many reasons. You never know. And those that claim they just keep getting five figure raises every time they quit or get fired, well, without seeing their 1040s such bragging is meaningless and probably BS.

I wish this forum would be used to help share the secrets of how people (who do make it on their own) in our biz do get so damn profitable they can buy buildings! Even if it is a deal due to the depression, they still have the money somehow. Just how is it done? Do they have contracts for 20 shows? Are they cranking out high end spots every week for an agency that pays well and quickly? This is the Business Forum, please share the tips so we can all buy a building! That's why I come here, it's to figure out how to do my business aspects better, I have video down real well.

Scratch that, I wouldn't want real estate. Just lost a lot of my nest egg in my brother's major shopping center deal that went under. It was super successful until I got in at the wrong time. Commercial real estate is in much worse shape than video production. Slow paying tenants are deadlier than slow playing clients...Much deadlier.



Return to posts index

Ron LindeboomRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 16, 2010 at 3:43:00 am

[Ned Miller] "Some people are able to take on investment risk because there may be a safety net. Recently I visited or communicated with a few guys who were my mentors and are 15-20 years older than me and now comfortably in retirement. When we were working together they seemed "normal" financially. Now I know that the majority of these successful guys, or ones I thought "made it on their own", or wanted all to believe they did, 1) either came from family money, 2) their wife came from family money, 3) a combination of both or 4) the wife made a very high income. It is one or a combo of those four factors."


And then on the other hand there are people like me and Kathlyn. We don't have family money. Never had any investors. Didn't have a safety net. No insurance either. Didn't have a cushy job and income to bank on. We invested what we did have in our original video system, a Media 100 back in 1994. Everything was on the line. Everything.

Why did it work for us? Because we never waited for anyone to make anything happen for us. We knew that if we didn't get off our asses every single day and work hellacious hours that most of our sane friends would have laughed at -- we'd have failed.

We didn't give ourselves excuses. Too many do that. Way too many, really.

Do something. Do it again. And again. Do it until it works.

That's what we learned in the fire.

Ron Lindeboom
founders, creativecow.net


Return to posts index

Ned MillerRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 16, 2010 at 3:51:59 am

What fire?

Ned Miller
Chicago Videographer
http://www.nedmiller.com
http://www.bizvideo.com


Return to posts index

Ron LindeboomRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 16, 2010 at 4:37:35 am

[Ned Miller] "What fire?"

Let's see: no money, no savings, no insurance, three bouts of pneumonia in two years, getting ripped off for one of the businesses we built by a bunch of lawyers and scheisters, insane hours of fighting to bounce back from it all, and on and on.

Maybe there were no matches or gasoline involved, but it sure felt like fire to us.

;)

But as they say: what don't kill you just makes you stronger -- oh, and ornerier.

Best regards,

Ron Lindeboom



Return to posts index

Steve WargoRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 16, 2010 at 7:16:10 am

Amen!

Steve Wargo
Tempe, Arizona
It's a dry heat!

Sony HDCAM F-900 & HDW-2000/1 deck
5 Final Cut (not quite PRO) systems
Sony HVR-M25 HDV deck
2-Sony EX-1 HD .

Ask me how to Market Yourself using Send Out Cards


Return to posts index

cowcowcowcowcow
Steve KownackiRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 16, 2010 at 12:23:07 pm

I'm totally on board with Ron - it's passion that gets you started and wisdom to learn from others that leads to success. This forum is filled with bits on how to market and run a shop - it's your job as the reader to glean this. If someone has to point it out you should be an employee not self-employed. And I'd stay away from those that "had family money, a wife with a good job, etc" and are now retired. Unless they returned the investment and really made a go of it. Running a losing business with constant free money is not someone to look to for advice nor someone I'd admire. The pyramids are amazing, but at the cost of a continuous stream of slave labor. That's just wrong.

Complacency. That's what I got out of this thread. If you sit around thinking that work will just come in the door and current client will keep coming back you are wrong. Much of your time will be spent marketing and selling - probably upwards of 40%. You MUST keep your customers happy. Did you ever complain at a restaurant about anything? Stop complaining, write it down and NEVER do that to your customer. A dirty fork at a restaurant is a typo in a graphic. This cannot happen. When was the last time you sent a gift card to somebody? I spend a few hundred bucks a month on that.

My shop is now solely me with a bunch of independents - It gives me great control over expenses and reduces recurring overhead like salaries. Ryan Mast blogged "If I ask you what's your specialty, don't answer 'a jack of all trades.'" If you are being everything to everyone you have no time to sell. You get a great gig in the door that will keep you busy for 4 months... then nothing. It'll take 3 months to get you back on the radar. While I love doing all the trades, my main job is to get biz and shoot. When a big job comes in the door, I can get an assoc prod to help out with scheduling so I'm not burdened; or an editor to ingest & do rough cuts for a week and then I can sit in for a few hours and finish up; or maybe I do the roughs and call in a finish person. The other option is to work that additional 30-50 hours that week and never see my family. Not gonna happen. This keeps work flowing in, keeps clients happy and I still make money on other people working. I don't need 100%, just a portion of a bunch of work. Don't forget that you can "grow broke".

That's all I can think of now.







Steve



Jump to the FFP Website



View Steve Kownacki's profile on LinkedIn




Return to posts index

walter biscardiRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 16, 2010 at 1:24:49 pm

[Ned Miller] "I wish this forum would be used to help share the secrets of how people (who do make it on their own) in our biz do get so damn profitable they can buy buildings!"

I have a three part series on starting and running your own business that pretty much lays out how I got to where I am today. I opened this business $80,000 in the hole due to a failed partnership and then the expenses of starting up my one man operation in my spare bedroom.

http://library.creativecow.net/articles/biscardi_walter/ready.php

http://library.creativecow.net/articles/biscardi_walter/shop.php

http://library.creativecow.net/articles/biscardi_walter/running.php

And more recently, Small Steps to Big Success

http://magazine.creativecow.net/article/small-steps-to-big-success

A lot of my information is in there and of course throughout these forums.





Walter Biscardi, Jr.
Editor, Colorist, Director, Writer, Consultant, Author, Chef.
HD Post and Production
Biscardi Creative Media

"Foul Water, Fiery Serpent" featuring Sigourney Weaver coming soon.

Blog Twitter Facebook


Return to posts index

Ned MillerRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 16, 2010 at 2:00:50 pm

Thanks Walter! And all the best in your new space. I need some inspiration.

Thanks,

Ned

Ned Miller
Chicago Videographer
http://www.nedmiller.com
http://www.bizvideo.com


Return to posts index

Chris DonaldsonRe: Another One Bites the Dust #2
by on Jun 16, 2010 at 11:03:16 pm

Walter -

Thanks for passing on the great business info. Much appreciated.

As a sidenote to real estate - when Howard Shultz, CEO of Starbucks, was asked what business his company was in, he answered 'Real Estate'.

He was only half-kidding.

Chris Donaldson
Producer
Hand Crank Films
http://www.handcrankfilms.com


Return to posts index

<< PREVIOUS   •   VIEW ALL   •   PRINT   •   NEXT >>
© 2017 CreativeCOW.net All Rights Reserved
[TOP]