Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Märklin & Trix Preorder Programs Now Ready!

Today we uploaded the complete Märklin & Trix Preorder Programs. We offer an EXTRA 5-10% Discount for placing Preorders (thru 4/30/08) PLUS an ADDITIONAL 3% Discount on Early Bird Preorders placed between now and April 15th.

Our own initial orders must be placed by Friday February 29th to get our best prices.

We received the new item brochures in bulk and will be mailing out Preorder Programs ASAP.


Thursday, February 14, 2008

Märklin & Trix 2008 Preorder Program

We are busy preparing our Märklin & Trix 2008 Preorder Program and all USA Dealers received Retail Prices for the new items during the first week of February. We are waiting for New Item Brochures so that we can prepare our own informative pages. What I have noticed though is that many dealers have their web sites prepared for the new item ordering, yet so far, I have not found any of the major dealers committing to prices! They all use "TBD" and somehow expect the customers to order without knowing the prices. Several even claim to have a "lowest price guaranteed". It is not our intention to EVER expect a customer to order blindly. IMHO, no one wants to be the first dealer to set a "benchmark" for pricing so they're taking a "wait and see" attitude. You can be sure that we'll present our competitive prices in due time. Remember, our prices remain fixed regardless of the Euro/Dollar exchange rate and you'll pay the price in effect at the time of ordering, not a "floating" price.


Saturday, February 9, 2008

Press Release of Walther's Märklin Distribution Change (FYI)

We received this today from Walther's. This is a direct quote of the Walther's side of the Märklin distribution change to take place:

Walthers Named Exclusive North American Distributor For Marklin

Wm. K. Walthers, Inc. has been appointed the exclusive North American distributor for Marklin Inc. A formal announcement will be made during the Nuremberg Toy Fair, where staff from both companies will be on hand to answer questions and review the new Marklin and Trix product assortments.

Dealers will notice some changes in the near future. Current inventory and warranty work will be transferred to Walthers; Marklin Inc. will continue to process orders for standard line items until the transition is complete. Marklin staff will continue providing sales and marketing support to authorized North American Marklin and Trix dealers.

Dr. Tom Catherall will continue to provide technical support for the Marklin and Trix Systems products and write the bi-monthly Digital Club newsletter. Customer service for the various Club programs will be handled by the Marklin Inc. staff.

"This is an exciting opportunity for both companies and we are delighted to be working with Marklin." said Phil Walthers. "Walthers expertise as the leading distributor of model railroad products coupled with Marklin's support staff will provide a high level of customer service, and a foundation to expand sales and market awareness for these very special products."


Friday, February 8, 2008

Märklin Catalog Additional Delivery

Märklin informed us today that they've received a large shipment of the new 2008 catalogs so we should have all backorders filled by the end of next week. They arrived too late to add to a large shipment headed our way today including the following "New for 2007" items: (most of these items will include extra stock beyond that needed to fill Preorders)

M18510 2007 (August) H0 German Federal Army Fennek Reconnaissance Vehicle
M18515 2007 (September) H0 German Federal Army Leopard 2 A6 Tank
M18520 2007 (July) H0 German Federal Army Gepard Tank
M18525 2007 (September) H0 German Federal Army Fuchs Armored Transport Vehicle
M18535 2007 (October) H0 German Federal Army 7TGL Mil Truck
M18540 2007 (October) H0 German Federal Army 10T GL Mil Truck
M39540 2007 (October) Digital SBB TEE RAe Gottardo Rail Car Train (L)
M43850 2007 (August) DB type Av4üm-62 Express Train Rheingold Passenger Car
M43855 2007 (October) DB type Avümh-111 TEE Passenger Car w/marker lights (L)
M43860 2007 (August) DB type Ap4üm-62 Express Train Rheingold Passenger Car
M43865 2007 (October) DB type Apümh 121 TEE Passenger Car (L)
M46953 2007 (August) H0 German Federal Army Kbs 443 Stake Car & 2 Fennek Reconnaissance Vehicles
M48710 2007 (October) H0 German Federal Army Rimmps 651Heavy Duty Flat Car & Fuchs Armored Vehicle
M48711 2007 (October) H0 German Federal Army type Rimmps Heavy Duty Flat Car & Leopard 2 A6 Tank
M48712 2007 (October) H0 German Federal Army Rimmps 650 Heavy Duty Flat Car & Gepard Tank
M48713 2007 (October) H0 German Federal Army Rimmps 650 Heavy Duty Flat Car & 10T GL Mil Truck
M80317 2007 Insider Z Car


Thursday, February 7, 2008

Märklin Price Update + 2008 Märklin & Trix Preorder Program

Märklin has informed us that when Walther's takes over the distribution of Märklin items on or about March 1st, there will be a general price increase on the order of 5-7%. We've been told by Märklin, Inc. that the price increase would have been larger if Märklin, Inc. continued to be the distributor. Needless to say, we will be adjusting our prices at that point. They will now be based on a discount off of the new retail pricing. We believe this will work out much better for our customers.

Our 2008 Märklin & Trix Preorder Program is beginning to come together and we expect to have our usual "Early Bird Discount" for a limited time along with our "Preorder Discount" program lasting for a longer time. While the program will change, the SAVINGS will remain!


Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Märklin Distribution Change & Our Discount

Märklin has announced that USA Distribution of the Märklin product line will now be handled through Walther's. This will change how Märklin is sold in this country. In 1998 Märklin discontinued retail pricing (ie. MSRP/Manufacturers Suggested Retail Price) and instead sold to Märklin dealers under a Dealer Net Pricing program. Dealers then determined their own pricing and since there was no MSRP, it became difficult for customers to determine where the prices "should be". I personally thought this was a bad idea from the start and even within the past few months had customers try to tell me that "X dealer discounts Y percent", to which I would reply "there's no price to discount FROM..." which is hard for consumers to understand in our USA market. While we're pleased to see a return to a retail price structure, the dealer discount through Walther's is set at a minimal value for the hobby industry. By limiting the discount they will hold MSRP's to a more realistic value in the eyes of the customers. Hopefully this will work to help promote the sales of Märklin model railroad items.

We will be establishing our own discount program in the next weeks once the complete program from Walther's becomes available.

Our 2008 Preorder Program will be established for the preordering of Märklin and Trix items as soon as we have more complete information.

It's an exciting time for Märklin and we think 2008 changes will please all of our customers.

Your comments are encouraged.

- Thanks, Bill Ott