The engine-tuning market and the embedded market is huge. How can one make his own profit (bigger!) ?
It is possible for anyone to make money from activities (that are usually also fun) related to VEMS-Group (eg. GenBoard/VerThree )
The following is required to realize sales:
- core technology - we have superior technology to what most resellers dream of. Also, it's being improved continuously.
- manufacturing - this is working very well now. After having the design we can manufacture a batch in about 3 weeks. Unfortunately many parts need to be ordered 10..16 weeks in advance. The mechanical manufacturing is not as smooth yet as the electronic.
- stocking, packaging, shipping - we have 2 bigger warehouses (US East Coast and Hungarian warehouses), and there is no demand for fragmenting the stock more than this in 2004 (there are some smaller warehouses that only have a limited set of the items, eg. only endplates at the manufacturing location).
- installation help - this is partly online, partly onsite. Many people who wouldn't pay 200 Euro if not confident in support will pay thousands if he is sure he gets the necessary support
- documentation - installation help is hard without good, detailed doc (best if it encourages contribution, like wiki, but anything could work: even doc that makes contribution almost impossible). We need to catch up here
- tuning software - MegaTune is getting better and better; but we haven't reached Motec quality here (currently more expertise is needed to configure the same functions with GenBoard).
As you see, it is impossible without good teamwork.
The most money is in installation help (especially onsite help). However it does not scale well. Also, it often means responsibility (depending on contract). This is the best option for those who have a workshop anyway, or plan to maintain one.
stocking, packaging, shipping means less profit, but it will become important when we boost sales.
The other activities mean less money per unit, however they scale very well. When we began, developers only got their free PCBs and units. Since v3.2 is shipping they get added money as well (see CompenSation/Distribution) - at the moment only significant for core developers. When total sales pass the million dollar line (expected within 2 years), this will be significant amount even for developers (or doc maintainers) that only contributed a few % to one part or the other.
We currently don't maintain contracts with parties. Anyone can jump in the installation market any time. However we'll need to maintain contracts in the future for a few reasons:
- licensing, exams: we need to organize some exams to make sure that anyone installing units for others (and get discounts, etc...) have reasonable knowledge and experience.
- good prices. Now, that prices ~ 1/20 of comparable motec's there is no significant discount to wholesale quantities. (there is some, eg. the 9 sold + 1 free board). When prices get higher due to better support, tuningsw, and docs, the partner-discounts will be important.
Understanding (not just reading) the above should get you started in making money with VEMS-Group.
Anyway: have fun!