Sunday, May 27, 2012

Businesses for Sale

Well, hello there!
We have two business opportunities listed for sale right now on eBay. They are:

We figured you might have some questions, so we thought we'd preemptively answer a few of them for you. Obviously, if you have any more questions, just ask!

Why are you selling these? If they were successful you wouldn't be selling them, so there must be something wrong with them, yes?
No, not at all. We absolutely pinky swear promise that we're not trying to sell you a lemon, honest! The reason we're selling these two business opportunities is different for each, but we'd be happy to explain.

Demand for Christmas stockings is always high, that's why its the most developed stand alone business (has its own website already). Each year, in the summer, we start planning for Christmas and the plans are all so lovely...then it hits, the Christmas rush, and we're so swamped making purses, we STOP promoting the Christmas stockings, because we're too busy. Business peaks for them at a time that simply does not fit for us with our main business.

The bears don't fit with us for a different reason. It involves production. They are just TOO different from everything else we do. The supplies are different (stuffing, takes up a lot of space in our cramped studio), the number of inputs (pieces) is different, the machines are different (we sew our purses on commercial machines, and the bears on home machines), and they are more labor intensive (which lends itself more to being a home based business, than a studio based business, like we are). We like them, they are popular, but they just don't mesh with the day to day production of purses. I think that as a home based business, they'd be spectacular- we just don't have the space, time and resources to give them all the love they deserve.

What if I can't sew, can I just hire someone else to sew for me?
You are free to do whatever you like, but we suggest, starting out, to keep your overhead costs low, that you expect to produce the items yourself. That's what we'd recommend- but again, its just a suggestion, and you can do whatever you choose, you're the boss!

What are the differences between the two businesses you are selling?
There are a few differences! Here are the big ones.
-Sewing skill level- The stockings are easier to make. I truly believe that even if you've never sewn before, you could take a class, learn, and make perfectly lovely stockings. The bears, while not extremely difficult, are harder than the stockings, especially putting their heads on :)

-Seasonality- Bears will sell year round, while the Christmas stockings are a seasonal business, and you'll do the majority of your sales in the fall and winter for stockings. Both can be a blessing (year round sales or seasonal sales), just depends on what you're looking for

-Equipment- The bears come with a sewing machine but not an embroidery machine, and the stockings come with an embroidery machine, but not a sewing machine (see a few questions down for why)

-Website- The stockings already have their own website set up, with a template installed. The bears do not. You can choose to sell however you want (a website, Etsy, facebook, etc), but if you want to sell on a website, the stockings have that one extra step already done. If you're curious about the cost- we are happy to show the buyer of the bear business how to set up a website template for $20, however, if you want something custom designed, a website designer will cost anywhere from $100 to $1000's, depending on who you choose.

Is everything I need to start my own business included?
Pretty much. There are probably a few omissions, like there's no stuffing included with the bears (mainly because it would be a pain to ship). The stocking business doesn't include a sewing machine, just the embroidery machine, so if you don't already have one, you'll need one.

What if I have tax questions?
You should consult with a tax professional.

What if I have legal questions?
You should consult with an attorney.

Why are you selling one business with an embroidery machine and the other with a sewing machine?
We actually debated this one a lot. Truth is, I had just one extra sewing machine and one extra embroidery machine (see question below as to why), so I had to decide how to split them up. We decided to put the embroidery machine with the stockings because we felt that personalized stockings were more necessary than personalized bears. Plus, you can satin stitch initials and a heart on the bear with the sewing machine. And even a hand embroidered name would be adorable on the bears.

What condition are the machines in?
Excellent condition, actually. I bought both of these machines in January 2011 when we opened a satellite location (our main studio was still in our basement back then, and we needed to expand to accommodate more employees). In a classic "live and learn" scenario, I sublet space without reading the tenant's original lease, and we had to leave after just one month. So both of these machines were used for just a month, they are practically brand new.

How much money will I make?
Consulting crystal ball...Okay, no, seriously. No one can answer that question for you, and if they say they can, or guarantee that you'll make a certain amount of $$$, they're not being honest with you. Just like everything else, what you put into it, will determine what you get out of it. Not, the answer you were looking for? Sorry, I know, but its the truth.

Will I make money? Will I loose money?
See question above. But, I wouldn't be selling these if I didn't think that yes, you can make money operating them. And yes, we currently make money operating them.

What are the overhead costs?
That will depend on how you set up your business. If you want to keep the URL's you're getting, those will cost you about $10 a year. If you want to operate a website for your business (as opposed to selling on someone else's site, like Etsy), you'll also have web hosting fees, which can be anywhere between $5-$15/month. Rest assured, you're not committing to something with very high overhead costs- both of these business opportunities {we feel} make great home based business opportunities, with low overhead costs.

Why are there some seemingly random things included?
You noticed that, did you? lol
Well, we've been operating our business for over 8 years now, so there were things in the design studio that we figured you {might} be able to use, so we included them, like the bookmark sleeves- they make awesome covers for fabric swatches. But rest assured, we didn't just throw together a bunch of random stuff we don't use and call it a "business". Both of these items are things we currently had in our production line, so 98% of what's included is stuff you'll use everyday.

Are these businesses set up just to make items out of uniforms, or can they be set up to make items out of fabric instead?
We make things out of uniforms, so both of these businesses, as we operated them, the products were made out of actual uniforms. However, nothing changes production-wise (except fewer steps, because you don't have to deconstuct the uniform) if you choose to make the items out of fabric. You can do one or the other, or you can do both.

Can I buy them both? Is there a discount?
Sure, you can buy them both! Each is an auction, so the final prices for each will be determined by the participants of the auction, so there can be no discount on the sales price. We will be happy to ship everything together, and give you a discount on the shipping (whatever the actual shipping costs are).

Why do I need you at all? Can't I just start a business all on my own?
Sure, absolutely, you can start a business all on your own- you don't need me! But, I priced both business opportunities with starting bids well below the market price of just the supplies you are getting alone- basically, if you went out and bought all this stuff, you'd pay a lot more for it. We've been in business for over 8 years now, so you also get to "pick our brain" and get our help in setting up your business, a service that others charge thousands of dollars for.

Are you (Hero On My Arm) going out of business? Is that why you're starting to sell off things?
No, a thousand times no! Hero On My Arm isn't going anywhere. We've been in business for over 8 years now, and as businesses grow and evolve, they try new things, not all of which end up being a good fit with the original business. That's all this is. Things we've acquired, that we think would be more successful in different (less busy) hands.

Are you going to sell Hero On My Arm?
Well...probably not. These (the bears and stockings) are small enterprises, and Hero On My Arm is a big enterprise, so if you are asking if you'll see it listed on eBay one day, the answer is no, most definitely not. That being said, Hero On My Arm is like our child, we love it and we want what's best for it. If an opportunity to see it grow and thrive in different hands, on a scale we can't provide for it came along, we wouldn't want to hold it back. Geesh, that's sappy, isn't it? But, no, we're not actively trying to sell it. In fact, we have some awesomely fantastic goodness about to launch this summer- if you love Hero On My Arm, you're going to love all the great things headed your way in the coming months!

What if my question hasn't been answered already?
Send us an email at or call the studio at 405-485-3842

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