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One rises from the dust

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walter biscardiOne rises from the dust
by on Jun 19, 2010 at 1:40:49 am

As I mentioned in a previous thread, we are planning a new 6000 sq ft facility. Well today we became commercial land owners of almost two acres of land. Next week the silt fences go up and then the following Monday the grading happens. With any luck we will open our doors around Thanksgiving with a huge open house party!!!

I'll be running continuous updates in my blog on the building progress. Big shout out to the Boomies for all their support throughout the years. We're gonna have to have a cow themed suite in your honor!

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.

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Rich RubaschRe: One rises from the dust
by on Jun 19, 2010 at 2:08:15 am

Not to be outdone by Walter, we just received loan approval on an 8600 square foot building on a 42,000 square foot lot. Most of the space will serve as a soundproof soundstage with about 2800 square feet of office space.

After nearly two years of looking at lease space we started last year looking for an existing building. Finally a perfect building (concrete, high ceilings, 400 amps of power and three individual HVAC units, 12" garage door etc) came on the market and we've been pursuing it since!

Today was a milestone day because we got approval on the financing. Still plenty left to do and a build out will happen after closing, but things are looking very good.

I chose to buy because of the down market and our past three up years and to build security for the company. Kind of doing an "all in" on this one because of this crazy uncertain economy, but like Walter, we have been rockin and rollin'...oh, and exceeding expectations.

Anyone else buying land?



Rich Rubasch
Tilt Media Inc.
Video Production and Post
Owner/President/Editor/Designer/Animator
http://www.tiltmedia.com


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walter biscardiRe: One rises from the dust
by on Jun 19, 2010 at 2:29:43 am

Rock on Rich!! Nothing like taking advantage of a down market when you are in a strong position. Congrats!!

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.

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Mike CohenRe: One rises from the dust
by on Jun 19, 2010 at 3:52:01 am

We still occupy a suite in the building our founder built 20 years ago. Last year we gutted the place and rebuilt the interior, 16 offices, storage rooms, conference room and a much needed kitchen area.
Next time I'm in Atlanta I know where I'm going to visit!
Mike Cohen


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walter biscardiRe: One rises from the dust
by on Jun 19, 2010 at 12:04:58 pm

Sounds nice Mike! We looked real hard for a building we could convert but all would have taken us out of our budget range. We had a very specific budget and we are not going over that. In fact this purchase / build puts us almost 100k under the best option we could find for renovation.

Absolutely you will be welcome anytime! Heck the entire herd is welcome to stop by anytime once we get the place open!

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.

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Mick HaenslerRe: One rises from the dust
by on Jun 19, 2010 at 1:38:01 pm

Congratulations Walter and Rich. Walter, you've been a constant source of inspiration and this move is no exception. I have my eye on an old building in our historic downtown right now. I have no desire to expand at this moment but I can dream ya know. Slow and steady growth, that's the ticket! Can't wait to see the new facility, might have to do a road trip this winter.

Mick Haensler
Higher Ground Media


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Robbie CoblentzRe: One rises from the dust
by on Jun 19, 2010 at 2:27:26 pm

A year and a week ago, we closed on a 9200 sq. ft. space on 3.25 acres of land. Best move we ever made. We reserved 4500-5000 of it for us and turned the rest into rental space for creatives. We're at 90% occupancy and able to cash flow over 50% of the loan payment with rental income. Made for a long hot summer last year, but well worth t. Congrats to you guys on pulling the trigger. Best of luck!


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Stephen MannRe: One rises from the dust
by on Jun 28, 2010 at 12:26:29 am

"Anyone else buying land? "

I would if I could find a few partners to share the load. Any suggestions?

Steve Mann
MannMade Digital Video
http://www.mmdv.com


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Rich RubaschRe: One rises from the dust
by on Jun 28, 2010 at 1:28:27 am

I have read so many horror stories about "partners" that I'm desperately trying to make this work alone (with my team, of course). Save your pennies!

Rich Rubasch
Tilt Media Inc.
Video Production and Post
Owner/President/Editor/Designer/Animator
http://www.tiltmedia.com


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Robbie CoblentzRe: One rises from the dust
by on Jun 28, 2010 at 2:34:32 am

Same here. Just the wife and I in the realty end of things.



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Ron LindeboomRe: One rises from the dust -- In the business chess game
by on Jun 20, 2010 at 3:29:13 pm

After thinking about Walter's post for a bit, I thought that I'd throw out a few ideas for some of those here to kick around a bit...

This market has been in a consolidation/redefinition/acquisition phase for about a decade now. Where there were once many thousands of companies serving this industry, the market has shrunk and there are days when it seems that you can now name most of the survivors.

When these things happen, people get conservative in the way that they handle their business dealings. Most get into protective modes and try to save themselves by not doing anything adventurous.

In these kinds of times, when things are shaky and risky, there are always a few that push forward and invest in themselves and their businesses. In doing so, they rise and expand while those around them continue to "pull in" and protect themselves, sort of like what turtles do when afraid.

As markets stabilize -- usually after the carnage of many businesses collapsing -- these more aggressive businesses are now in the prime position to lead in the newly redefined marketplace.

Some will think that it always takes money. Oh, it helps. But I hope my friend Walter doesn't mind me reminding the readers of this forum that I can recall when Walter was on the ropes and it didn't look good. He was in real trouble and most people in his position would have given up and walked away.

Not Walter.

Just as markets redefine themselves, so do individuals and companies. It is a sort of evolution of sorts and it allows for the kind of change that finds the answer to survival and growth. Walter is constantly redefining himself and his company. His core values are consistent but the way he deploys and reinvigorates them, is always changing and expanding.

It works. (Think of it as your stronger competitors trying to hit a moving target. The odds are far less that they'll hit you.)

Conversely, there are those who feel that "Hey, I've done it this way for decades and I'm not about to change now." This kind of attitude in today's market is a sure recipe for extinction.

I remember when we announced we were going into the magazine business. People laughed. We didn't have a salesman, I was already overworked (and was going to have to launch, develop, and sell it all by myself), and as Kathlyn said to me: "You haven't felt well for years, Ron, and this is going to add a lot more work to the pile." She told me that she'd back me on this if I really wanted to do it but that I really needed to think about it.

I told her that as long as the magazines in this market remained unchallenged by Creative COW in their core market, people (read: advertisers) would never really get the point of what the COW is or how big it is. We'd always just be this cute little thing out there with a funny name and an odd logo. But if we took them on on their own turf, we could beat them at their own game. (You see, they lacked vision then, and still do.)

Today, Videography's new issue is 36 pages (and as I recall 4 or 5 of them were ads for themselves or trade-out ads). I think the last time I saw DV it was like 32 pages. Millimeter is gone. So is Studio Monthly, Film & Video, Video Systems, and a few others. But Creative COW Magazine -- the one built by a guy who had no money at the time, and who had to do it by himself for a while just to get it out the door (until he could hand it off to Tim Wilson), is the strongest player in its field -- growing and increasing its presence as the others fade.

It hearkens back to our Power of Artistic Passion issue. People who are driven and who will not take no for an answer, often succeed. And the ones who listen to commonsense all the time and who use that as their rudder always, will nearly always find the "smart" reason to quit.

Warren Buffett used to say it this way: be conservative when everyone else is gambling, and gamble when everyone else is being conservative.

Best regards,
Ron Lindeboom
CEO, CreativeCOW.net

Creativity is a type of learning process where the teacher and pupil are located in the same individual.

Graveyards are full of people the world couldn't do without.



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Patrick OrtmanRe: One rises from the dust -- In the business chess game
by on Jun 21, 2010 at 11:10:04 pm

Ron, you nailed it- as you almost always do :-)

>> When these things happen, people get conservative in the way that they handle their business dealings. Most get into protective modes and try to save themselves by not doing anything adventurous. <<

I'm gonna print that out and put it on our wall.

P


---------------------
http://www.patrickortman.com
Web and Video Design


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Ron LindeboomRe: One rises from the dust -- In the business chess game
by on Jun 21, 2010 at 11:13:13 pm

[Patrick Ortman] "Ron, you nailed it- as you almost always do :-)"


ALMOST.

Now that's the operative word here, isn't it. ;o)

Best,

Ron Lindeboom


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Patrick OrtmanRe: One rises from the dust -- In the business chess game
by on Jun 22, 2010 at 12:51:37 pm

LOL well, can't let any of us get *too* big a head, right? Although, seriously, the article on Grinders you guys put out probably saved my bacon more than twice, and I've referred a lot of colleagues to it. If I haven't said so before, thank you Ron! This is not an easy business, but the Cow is helping me a lot.

---------------------
http://www.patrickortman.com
Web and Video Design


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walter biscardiRe: One rises from the dust -- In the business chess game
by on Jun 22, 2010 at 6:43:54 pm

[Ron Lindeboom] "Some will think that it always takes money. Oh, it helps. But I hope my friend Walter doesn't mind me reminding the readers of this forum that I can recall when Walter was on the ropes and it didn't look good. He was in real trouble and most people in his position would have given up and walked away.

Not Walter."


You are so correct sir, as usual. When I left my failed three year partnership back in 2001, I still owed that company $50,000 to pay off all the debts. And I had absolutely nothing from that company except my prized possession, a classic Coca Cola machine. It's super cool, but you certainly can't edit a television show with it.....

$30,000 lease later.... we're $80,000 in the hole before I do a single job.

It hasn't always been a pretty ride, but Rebecca and I have managed to build the business very slowly but steady with the good always offsetting the bad. Honestly the business is not where it is today without her guidance. I can create programming all day, but when it comes to the business management side of things, she offers the steady hand to ensure we spend within our means and not over it.

For two years now we've considered expanding but just didn't know exactly how we would do it so we looked all over. The first obvious choice was leasing and we came very close to leasing a 2400 sq. ft space two years ago. Then one of my clients called with all sorts of extra work and I knew that wouldn't be big enough.

And then the math showed us that we were better off buying in this economy than leasing. Commercial Property values were dropping off so quickly we could now afford to look at purchasing up to 12,000 sq ft buildings and still be fine. What we ended up with was the perfect situation where our realtor found 2 acres of foreclosed commercial land sitting in an already established light industrial park. The lot backs up to the woods creating a perfect outdoor setting for us to relax and Molly to chase frisbees. Best of all, it's only 10 minutes from the house.

So we're moving the Rooks and the Knights out onto the chess board taking our best shot at property and a building we could never have dreamed of even two years ago when we started. We've worked hard over the past 9 years and have been fortunate to save enough money to be in a position to take advantage of the market.

As I've said in the past, can't thank you and Kathlyn enough for the advice and friendship over the years and the tremendous amount of advice I've received across the entire pasture all these years.

Oh and we start pushing dirt next Monday. Woo hooooo! I wanna ride in the bulldozer!

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.

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Ron LindeboomRe: One rises from the dust -- In the business chess game
by on Jun 22, 2010 at 8:04:38 pm

[walter biscardi] "It hasn't always been a pretty ride, but Rebecca and I have managed to build the business very slowly but steady with the good always offsetting the bad. Honestly the business is not where it is today without her guidance. I can create programming all day, but when it comes to the business management side of things, she offers the steady hand to ensure we spend within our means and not over it. For two years now we've considered expanding but just didn't know exactly how we would do it so we looked all over."


You bring up an astute point, Walter, one which I learned well from a man named Gary Gatel who once headed a company named Rifle Farings, here in Paso Robles, California. I was the managing editor of Pacific Coast Business Magazine at the time, and I interviewed Gary for an article about getting through the collapse of a business -- which had happened to the onetime $22 million dollar a year company that had pioneered and built aerodynamic motorcycle farings, but had dropped to a million dollars or less in annual revenues due to Honda, Kawasaki, Yamaha and others shipping their bikes to America with the farings as part of the bike. Rifle had to change gears quick and they suddenly found themselves in the business of building food-grade fiberglass seed sprouting tanks for raising alfalfa sprouts for sale in health food stores.

Gary taught me a lesson that I will never forget. In our talk, Gary said: "Ron, companies are always being told by the marketplace what the market will accept from that company and at what size. Unfortunately, many business owners don't like the market's verdict and want to do something else, something grander, bigger, with more prestige and more money. They try to create 'their' vision of what they want and spend a fortune building it -- only to launch the company and see that their vision is rejected. But I have always believed that if you are making one more dollar than you spend, you can keep building indefinitely until you find the business equilibrium and the place where your company has established itself within the market's expectations profitably. It's more organic than spending a fortune building something only to watching it open to no traffic when it is launched, rejected because it was not what the market wanted. Markets also change and you have to change with them. We did, and now we know that we are no longer a $22 million business, we are much smaller -- but it works because we can accept that."

Here at Creative COW, we have always built with a keen reliance on Gary's words. We build slowly and refine each step, we do not think in terms of "finished" strategies, merely ones that are in constant development and testing -- organically assessing and tweaking each step and refining and building on each one that works.

Rebecca intrinsically understands Gary's principle, and from the conversations we have have with her over the years, she is clearly a smart woman -- one with a keen grasp on what it takes to build something successful.

You are indeed a blessed man to have such a partner in life and business, Walter.

Best regards,

Ron Lindeboom
CEO, CreativeCOW.net

Creativity is a type of learning process where the teacher and pupil are located in the same individual.

Graveyards are full of people the world couldn't do without.



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walter biscardiRe: One rises from the dust -- In the business chess game
by on Jun 22, 2010 at 8:43:08 pm

[Ron Lindeboom] "You are indeed a blessed man to have such a partner in life and business, Walter."

Amen!

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.

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