See it. Buy it. That is the instant sales mystique of this unique fabricated product, which builds on a niche market that encompasses currently popular off-grid living. This solid cottage industry manufacturers and sells an original product developed by the company founder more than 16 years ago. Buyers can be either on-grid or off-grid users.
When launched in 2003 there was nothing like the company’s product on the market. But the founder recognized that there was a need for a sturdy option that was easy-care and adaptable. Nothing else on the market is so perfectly matched to wilderness use: an ideal addition for any home or recreational property. For buyers, installation is a snap – adding to the product appeal.
The company’s marketing strategy builds on the product’s instant appeal. They have a website, do a limited amount of targeted magazine advertising, and attend a 2 - 3 home/ recreational trades shows each spring,. That is enough to produce a year’s worth of orders. By attending one or two shows in the Pacific Northwest of the US, the business could expand significantly.
Their best sales pitch lies in the product. Unique, competitively priced, and high quality, the arrival of one in an area invariably leads to orders flowing in from others who see it. The company has sold its product across Canada, with limited sales into the US, and some as far away as Europe.
For buyers, the product is easy to keep clean, has low maintenance, is easy to install, and long-lasting. The use of aluminum was specifically chosen for the design by the creator, a tradesman with 25 years’ experience in sheet metal fabrication.
Business overhead is low, operated from a year-round home office with production and warehouse space leased as needed. This means the business is also highly portable and can be moved to anywhere in Canada.
In addition to the owner and spouse, the company hires an assistant six to eight months a year and contracts a metal worker and welder. Based on this small staff, the company is able to generate consistent revenues of $500,000 to $600,000 annually and a net after tax income in excess of $220,000 for the owners (2018). Best of all, the owners are able to enjoy an unmatched lifestyle. They have a flexible work schedule and are able to live in a small and beautiful waterfront community with a mild climate.
Looking ahead, their current operation could increase production by an additional 20 per cent using existing space. Inventory is almost always sold out, suggesting additional market capacity. Given the instant appeal of the product, increased marketing would produce additional sales. The owner knew retirement was pending so did not pursue additional sales but recognized the business had ample scope to grow.
The new owner will acquire a low-stress, well-established business with a proven market combined with growth potential. Part of the growth potential lies in the current wave of baby boomers who are retiring and who will be spending more time at their vacation properties. These people will be browsing home and recreation shows, searching online, and leafing through lifestyle magazines, seeking new amenities to help them enjoy retirement.
These factors could make this an ideal semi-retirement business. It could operate from its current location in an area that offers some of Canada’s best climate, beautiful scenery, and recreational options. It is also able to be moved, since sales occur across Canada. Based on current sales, it could easily be expanded into the US Pacific Northwest or into Ontario’s booming cottage country.
The current owner will provide training in sales, business management, and fabrication of the product.
For the new owner, lifestyle is another advantage. The current owner works part of the year but otherwise has leisure time to enjoy a home in a water front community and a recreational property which – of course – includes the company’s product.
For more information on this opportunity, contact Michael Naprawa.