Author Topic: Does Playmobil ever make on commission? (ie. could we commission old steck?)  (Read 6455 times)

Offline Timotheos

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Richard estimated in another thread that PM's steck mold library might be valued at US $3 million.

Probably too expensive to buy...

But, I was wondering, does PM have a price range at which it agrees to produce a certain figure or set?  Do you think we could negotiate a "steck collectors set"?  At 10,000 Euro (say) for the whole run, we would only need 20 people to pledge 500 Euro.

But, something tells me Playmobil would want 100,000 Euro or more, especially for many pieces.  I guess it would be hard to get a good deal with enough pieces to make it worth the cost (I'm thinking a unit cost of 10-20 Euro per out of circulation piece...

I guess, at 20 Euro per piece, I could get a better deal even by overpaying on ebay (but of course the disadvantage of ebay is you still can't order at any quantity--one piece here, one piece there, maybe even damaged).

Didn't a museum commission the Madgeburger (spelling?) Knight?

-Tim

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The most common commissions are the ones you see for the chains such as Target in the USA and Vedes and Kauhof (have spelt that right?) in Germany.  The deciding factor may be quantity of output rather than value.
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Offline core

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Just to back up a little bit (and on a tangent) - does anyone know how much Geobra recognizes and support adult playmobil fans (not just in Germany - and how is there btw)?  iirc there was an article just a while back where it was stated that Lego sales(?) were 3x (in $) that of Playmobil - something that I though would be much higher.  From Lego pov (since it's another of my interest), they definitely recognize the adult fan and do cater to their needs:

- parts order (okay, Playmo has this)
- a friend tells me they (Lego) work closely with Lego Train clubs
- creating sets that go back to their original design roots,  as alot of fans were bemoaning the increasing use of large speciality pieces.
- allowing online cataloging and distribution of past set instructions (which iirc Geobra is dead set against)
- creating a 'fan club' of sorts (well, this one's for kids and adults alike ...)

At any rate, I was wondering if Geobra might be moved to re-release a line of 'classic' sets (for knights anyways ;)) much like their doing on a couple a vehicles a year.  Anyone want to start a petition? :D

On the other hand ... I just got a MIB 5738 (one of the last steck castles?), and compare that with MIB 3888 the fit of the pieces seems much tighter and a little off at times - the moulds might be wearing done (wild speculation on my part), and on the other hand I'm sure the System-X moulds still have some way to go for Geobra.

My 2cent's worth of ramblin'

-peter-
Peter

Offline arab warrior

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I worked in a factory which made plastic boxes for expensive designer pens and such and i have seen what kind of work is involved to just make one piece.
Therefore i find it very unlikely that any company would get involved with making a "special set" for collectors.
Nevertheless the idea is fantastic and i would be more than happy to lay down 500 bucks for such a set!!!!
So a petition might be the way to go, that is if we get all collectors on board.


Offline Rasputin

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in some what of a way i am sad i stared collecting in the 2000's and missed so many older sets . but then i wonder if a company would start rereleasing older sets how it would affect the nostalgia of the old sets . I so enjoy buying a miscellaneous lot for somebody to find that one little jem in the pile . Now if in a few years that figure or set got rereleased it would take some of the fun out of collecting. I also have a few classic cars and if the company who made them rereleased it, well its not so classic any more and people would not appreciate it on the streets as much due to the fact of so many being around. As a collector i would become quite skeptical paying premiums for older sets due to the uncertainty of that model being run again. There is a lot of fun in the hunt of that one special old piece. In my opinion i think the way the company is doing it is fine . make new sets look old and keep modern set for the new collector. Also i do think Playmobil caters to the collector, how many children do you know asking for christmas the blue and red old house or the weapons stand ?
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Offline Timotheos

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In my opinion i think the way the company is doing it is fine . make new sets look old and keep modern set for the new collector. Also i do think Playmobil caters to the collector, how many children do you know asking for christmas the blue and red old house or the weapons stand ?

I agree with you in principal, Rasputin. 

I just don't think PM should permanently retire sets for no reason other than to fuel a second hand "black market".  Geobra doesn't benefit from the second-hand collector's market (and may even be hurt by them if you consider the fan funnels money into the re-sale industry that could have gone to Geobra).

So, I think Geobra has an interest in teasing us now and again with re-releases, provided they can break even or profit off it.  If the toy sold once, it ought to be able to sell again.  The average kid probably plays with PM for five to seven years, so they can even bring back stuff to a completely fresh audience.  Granted, maybe they want to keep moving forward.  But any set over 10 years discontinued has never been seen by most PM kids (they weren't born yet!).

-Tim

-Tim


Offline Rasputin

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"black market" is a little over kill in terms. these are imported legally.  If the company went after every last avenue to get its fingers into every transaction it would give them a quite greedy image. To my knowledge no company benefits from the secondhand except from the DS orders to restore them . the other problem is most companies have a limiting production capability due to machines, storage, shipments, personnel etc. so the more old rerelease's they make, the less new sets can be made. Lets say just for example the western sets were still being made . This large production might have not left a sufficient amount of production capital for say the roman line..

and some how i do not think they permanently retire sets . If this was the policy they would destroy the mold, and this still could be remade. I think from a business perspective they may just wait around till that line shows new potential for marketability . and that does not come from a handfull of toy nuts.
If you hear the sound of the bell which will tell you that Grigori has been killed, if it was your relations who have wrought my death, then no one in the family will remain alive. They will be killed by the Russian people. :prays:

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The really high prices for old Playmobil tends to be a US eBay phenomenon.  Similar items in the UK tend to go much more cheaply, and in Germany cheaper still. 

Geobra is a company aiming for the mass market, and that means children of today and the re-issues are done with older fans in mind - nostalgia really - but the company cannot tie itself too closely to this market as it is small and very fickle. 

Over the last few years, Playmobil has greatly increased its range.  At one time, say 10 years ago, the Playmobil had about 250 items in the range and this was the norm.  As new items were introduced, old ones were retired so that the range remained at about 250 items.  Nowadays, the range is much bigger than this, but it probably does mean that items, especially if they are slow sellers, have a shorter live.
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Offline Rasputin

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I noticed how the prices in the states seem to run wild as well. When i was looking for a express train mid car it sold for the same price as a complete train with track and the mid car in the UK  ??? I once thought it was supply and demand but now i think it might be uninformed shoppers. I watch a lot of ebay auctions go way over what the toy sold for new even if it is still available .

Did the product range increase soon after the new high tech warehouse was built?
If you hear the sound of the bell which will tell you that Grigori has been killed, if it was your relations who have wrought my death, then no one in the family will remain alive. They will be killed by the Russian people. :prays:

Offline Timotheos

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I once thought it was supply and demand but now i think it might be uninformed shoppers. I watch a lot of ebay auctions go way over what the toy sold for new even if it is still available .

I shouldn't try to analyze ebay shoppers like Sigmund Freud.  But, sometimes I think a combination of American aggressiveness/obsessiveness and recklessness with cash leads bidders here to take auctions personally.

People battle to the death ("I gotta have it" / "I won't let nu2ebay234 beat me!").  The high prices in turn fuel the opportunists who hope to re-sell.  Half the time I bid on auctions I suspect I'm competing with re-sellers (though, if this was the case, rational re-sellers would avoid over-priced auctions, so I'm probably wrong).

I agree calling the playmobil re-sale market "Black Market" is technically incorrect.  Just, there is so much dodgey dealing, calling it "Black Market" feels good...   :-[ :-[ :-[ :-[ :-[ :-[ :-[