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DT
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Model trains and collectibles group Hornby cheered its followers with news that it will beat profit forecasts this year.

In a trading update yesterday the group said it had enjoyed better than expected trading through the final quarter of its financial year.

The company now predicts that profits before tax for the year ended March 31 will be not less than £8m.

The group, which also makes Scalextric, has been expanding its operations into Spain, France and Italy and is transferring European production to China.

Shares in the group jumped 14% to 212p on the news.

[Source - The Gardian]
 

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Only the very mean-minded could complain about this news. It has to be good for the hobby, good for the stock market and good for future pproduction. I wonder what Bachmann's profits are like.....

60134
 

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Bachmann model railway production worldwide exceeds Hornby's by a factor of 10.

They are the largest model railway company in the world.

2 Years ago Bachmann were rumoured to have manufactured 1.3m trains sets for their global customers. Hornby produce around 100,000 every year mainly for UK consumption.

The Bachmann earnings will overshadow anything that Hornby come up with.

£50-£60m per year?

Mattel are the largest toy company in the world making around £150m per quarter and with £600m of cash in the bank!

Lets face it. Hornby are a small company when you start comparing things...

You do have to wonder how Marklin could get it so very wrong?

Happy modelling
Gary
 

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First of all that's great news about Hornby. While Hornby is seen as #1 in the UK with their train and slot car lines it would be unfair to compare it with Bachman. Bachman is an industrial firm that makes products we haven't even heard of, and I would expect a lot of OEM stuff.

I found these figures while surfing the net.

Hornby
#Emp 171
2005 Sales £45 (All Lines)

Marklin
#Emp 1400
2005 Sales £85

Bachman, I suspect has sales in the 100's of millions.

Note. I was wrong their sales are only around £36
 

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QUOTE Note. I was wrong their sales are only around £36

Bachmann produced 1.3m sets two years ago and this info was published on Pat hammond's site.

Now Bachmann do trade under a number of different names and produce models for the Asian model railway market, China, Australia and the USA. They trade as Lilliput in Europe and possibly have other European operations aswell.

Whose sales are £36?

Notwithstanding all this I am just grateful that both Hornby and Bachmann UK are not faceless conglomerates, do speak directly with customers at model railway shows, do listen to customers, and do produce what customers want.

Hornby turnover has doubled in 6 years and no doubt Bachmann UK turnover has advanced also.

This success is down to the fact that both are listening companies and both appear to have their fingers on the pulse.

Long may this relationship between Hornby and Bachmann UK and the railway modelling community continue!


Happy modelling
Gary
 

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Here is a link to the Bachmann corporate website:-

http://www.bachmannindustries.com/

And I can see where Dennis got the Bachmann £36m annual turnover from and this figure appears remarkedly small!

Assets of about £90m are pledged to banks to secure banking facilities granted to the group which is further evidence that something is not right with the above figure.

Note the number of subsidiaries not 100% owned by Kader Holdings. The results only relate to Kader Holdings. Bachmann Industries Inc (USA) shares are 100% held by the subsidiary and they may have their own set of accounts.

Happy modelling
Gary
 

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Yes your right Gary, I thought it was quite small also but as the saying goes the Chinese have three sets of books, 1 for the government, 1 for the investors and 1 for the family.


The sad fact I learned is that Hornby only has 140-170 employees.

My gut feeling is that while the British hobbyist may have a smaller budget and maybe a narrower focus than their American counterpart they are very loyal to companies that they feel are addressing their market in both subject matter and price. Hornby seems to get it right. The only wish I have is that they made more vintage steam locomotives.
 

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QUOTE My gut feeling is that while the British hobbyist may have a smaller budget and maybe a narrower focus than their American counterpart they are very loyal to companies that they feel are addressing their market in both subject matter and price. Hornby seems to get it right. The only wish I have is that they made more vintage steam locomotives.

Now we can have a proper discussion.

Have Hornby and Bachmann got it as right as their corporate success would suggest?

Is Dennis right about the narrow focus of the UK modeller?

Are we only interested in those subjects that are brought to us by Hornby and Bachmann?

Dennis seems to be saying that the American modeller has a global interest and will buy up everything and anything from everybody.

And that the UK modeller will only buy UK outline from Hornby and Bachmann (and Dapol and Peco).

Doug has suggested elsewhere that the French will only buy Jouef.

I remember buying Playcraft by Jouef from Woolies whan I was a youngster in the 1960's because it was cheap so Jouef has a few memories for me and they did do the odd British outline subject.

So is this a European thing?

Happy modelling
Gary
 

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QUOTE My gut feeling is that while the British hobbyist may have a smaller budget and maybe a narrower focus than their American counterpart they are very loyal to companies that they feel are addressing their market in both subject matter and price

I agree with Dennis. From the responces I have seen on this forum to paying more for better product, the majority of UK modellers seem quite happy to have models that do nothing other than go backward and forward and have bits fall of them all the time and express extreme disgust at paying twice as much for a model that has sound, smoke, lights and doesn't have "super detail" parts fall off continuously. Each to their own I say but what amazes me is the extreme reaction I find when discussing Continental and American locos and their cost. You get what you pay for at the end of the day and railway modelling in America and Germany has moved on to provide more , typically us Brits want to stay loyal to the past and are reluctant to progress on to new things.


QUOTE Have Hornby and Bachmann got it as right as their corporate success would suggest?

They have as their product is far better than it used to be but they still have a long way to go in global terms if they are to produce to the level of Roco, Trix, BLI or aother overseas manufacturers.


QUOTE Are we only interested in those subjects that are brought to us by Hornby and Bachmann?

No we aren't. In global terms one is a local manufacturer and the other is one of many in a huge (USA) market with a sideline in producing models for a few other countries. Their are many other manufacturers who are of interest. Look at the discussion about Marklin for confirmation of that.


QUOTE And that the UK modeller will only buy UK outline from Hornby and Bachmann (and Dapol and Peco).

If you go by the discussion on this forum that seems to be the impression given. It may be worth having a poll to confirm this. But it seems that most people want to model what they know and a minority want to model overseas prototype.


Hornby and Bachmann have definately got it right as they have provided what the majority market wants. My issue is that they are both providing the same product aimed at the same level and I reall think there is a space in the UK market for something better in terms of quality. The live steam sold fairly well so there are people who are prepared to pay for better product. Whether digital sound, live steam or whatever.
 

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QUOTE (Gary @ 28 Apr 2006, 05:24) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Now we can have a proper discussion.

Have Hornby and Bachmann got it as right as their corporate success would suggest?

Is Dennis right about the narrow focus of the UK modeller?

Are we only interested in those subjects that are brought to us by Hornby and Bachmann?

Dennis seems to be saying that the American modeller has a global interest and will buy up everything and anything from everybody.

And that the UK modeller will only buy UK outline from Hornby and Bachmann (and Dapol and Peco).

Doug has suggested elsewhere that the French will only buy Jouef.

I remember buying Playcraft by Jouef from Woolies whan I was a youngster in the 1960's because it was cheap so Jouef has a few memories for me and they did do the odd British outline subject.

So is this a European thing?

Happy modelling
Gary

Your probably right on the American modeller focus. when I was modelling american I bought Athearn made in USA, China and Korea, Atlas made by kato for N, Roco for HO and china for HO, Walthers everywhere but the US, MDC USA, P2K China and Roco, IHC Mehano Tecnika, Bachamnn China, BLI Korea and China and then there are brass models made in Japan, Korea, China, Malaysia, Taiwan,India to name a few places. American modellers don't really care where it's made just so long as the quality is good and the price is low. The volume of models made for the American market far outstrips anything made for the rest of the world and volume is the word. Most of the chinese factories wont look at anything less than 5,000 units but more likely to be 50,000 units. Luckily there are one or two factories in china that cater for small production runs, 500 units, or we OZ New South Wales modellers wouldn't have anything RTR Look for Trainorama, Eureka Models, Austrains, Auscision Models in your local hobby shop. Never heard of them you say. No Wonder as these are single point of sales models that have to be preordered or you'll never get one. Think yourselves lucky that you can walk in and buy a Britannia off the shelf at any time. If I want a NSWGR C38 I have to build one.

Ozzie21
 

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i think this argument is getting a bit ahead of itself. hornby cannot be compared directly with roco or any other continental manufacturer yet. many of the continental manufacturers are producing high end locos for a particular market-and they are going bust in their droves!

hornby's homa market is very different in that it caters mainly for a more budget market. it does that because that is where the UK market is. that is why they are making money and others are loosing it. people simply cannot afford to spend stupid ammounts of money on a hobby anymore. they are too busy trying to take out a bank loan to fill their cars fuel tank!
It will be very interesting to see what happens in the next 5 years as they try to take that same market in europe. especially as this market is now held mostly by bachmann!!
to try and compare the companies now is daft. but give it 5 years and we will see how well they do.

peter
 

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Point well taken. It's something of a no win situation because the continental modeler (German) has such high standards that they are almost forcing this situation upon their own manufacturers but toy soldiers manufacturers, King & Country and even Scalextric prove than high quality can be gotten in China.
 

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QUOTE It's something of a no win situation because the continental modeler (German) has such high standards that they are almost forcing this situation upon their own manufacturers

Maybe there are a large number of potential wanabee continental modellers who would welcome UK type budget prices and standards?


Is there a European equivalent of Smokey Joe? This is one of Hornby's best selling models of the last 23 years and still in production.

Happy modelling
Gary
 

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>Is there a European equivalent of Smokey Joe?
From some of the prices I saw while surfing tonight - ~3000 Euro for a German Brass O Gauge pacific, I doubt it. The detail in the photos looked gorgeous but if that's not enough how about 5000 for a Gauge 1 electric???

David
 

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Having just checked Trix do a starter set with a basic electric loco and couple of wagons with anologue controller for 109 Euros. Smoky Joe is listed at Hattons for 75quid which is about the same when you do a currency conversion. The trix one is definitly better value here.

However if you want the Trix digital start set the price goes up to 199 Euro but this includes the new Trix systems controller. Hornby's digital sets are between 120 and 215 quid so there is not a lot in it really. The diference comes when buying digital sound locos or buying them from dealers in the UK which will add on at least 50% to your price.
 

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I was thinking more the stand alone Smokey Joe which Hattons list for £23. Is there a Euro equivalent of that?

The Hornby Smokey Joe set contains a track mat, track pack A (points, siding and buffer) and 4 wagons adding value to the set. An equivalent set to the Trix set is around £40 to £50 in the UK and even lower in the USA where volumes are much higher.

From a starter point of view and getting new blood involved the UK have got it right.

Am I right or wrong?


Happy modelling
Gary
 

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Ofcourse the European continent has cheap models and startersets.
Roco has just started with a playtime BR 120 which is 30 euro and comes with a dcc-decoder fitted. They also got digital startersets with lokmaus starting from 99 euro.

Another company which got good, cheap startersets is Piko. I got a Piko-set for 65 euro. It includes a BR 218 diesel (with head- and taillights), 3 wagons, a large railoval with 3 points (new A-rail) and analogue controller.

Werner
 

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QUOTE I was thinking more the stand alone Smokey Joe which Hattons list for £23. Is there a Euro equivalent of that?

The cheapest I could find was 40 Euros for a Roco electric which is not that far off 23 quid. I think all the manufacturers subsidize the starter sets to get brand loyalty so these are usually far better value than the individual components.
There isn't really that big a gap between British and Continental prices if you compare like for like. However if you are going by the prices in UK shops, which are often twice those of Germany, then it would look expensive.
 
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