Upside-Down Thinking by Patric Fransko
by Patric Fransko
April 22nd, 2015

Why Window Film is an Industry for the Future, Part 1

I recently celebrated my 15th anniversary of being in the window film industry. While clearly not the number of years that some of the more seasoned veterans have, I think that this amount of time has allowed me to have a good perspective on this industry. That being said, I wanted to take the next two weeks to explain why I think the window film industry is one of the best business opportunities heading into the future.

This industry has a lot to give for relatively low start-up costs. To run a successful window film business certainly requires not only an up-front, but an ongoing investment, but that investment is a fraction of what it is in other comparable industries. Let’s take the restaurant industry as an example. The cost to get a new restaurant off the ground is extremely high and the failure rate of restaurants in the first five years of operation is an incredible statistic. On top of that, unless that restaurant is wildly successful, the owners won’t make a large income after all expenses are paid.

Another example comes from my experience in the bicycle industry. The costs to set up, inventory and start a new bike shop were well into the six figures before the doors were even opened. Even after that large initial investment, shop owners have to watch their business closely and make the right inventory decisions, when to discount aging product, etc., if they even hope to make a decent living at the end of the year.

This sets up the case for window film. Here are three reasons why:

  1. AffordabilityWith window film, the costs required to be fully operational is a much more reasonable initial investment. Many in the window film business fully launch their companies with less than a $10,000 initial investment.
  2. LongevityWith the occasional exception of a manufacturer introducing a new line of film or discontinuing a current offering, film inventory will be just as sellable three months from the day it’s bought. This longer shelf life of film products eliminates the need of discounting products to clear out inventory that is becoming obsolete.
  3. AccessibilityFinally, shops can order film on an as-needed basis when the jobs come in. There’s no real need to house a tremendous amount of product and tie up a large amount of cash before a job is sold. This allows business owners to keep inventory flow tied to cash flow and not be forced to make choices about what they “think” may sell well two months from now.

I hope you’re in agreement with me. This truly is the industry to be in! If not, let me know your thoughts in the comments below. Next week, I plan to discuss how current and future trends appear favorable to several segments of the business.

Thanks for reading!

 

This blog is from Focus on Film, the weekly e-newsletter that covers the latest news regarding window film and related products, including paint protection film. Click HERE to sign up—there is no charge. Interested in a deeper dive? Free subscriptions to Window Film magazine in print or digital format are available. Subscribe at no charge HERE.

2 comments
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  1. Well said , but on the other side of the coin ”every man and his dog is getting into the industry”, greating over trading and price cutting. Window films coming out of Asia are half the price to the American manufactures.

  2. Leon,

    The market has always been competitive for the 15 years that I have been involved. The companies that are doing a good job tend to last and the bottom feeders tend to go away only to be replaced by new bottom feeders. Whether you are an installer, distributor or manufacturer, the companies providing unique value with their product or service will survive.

    Thanks for the feedback.

    Patric

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