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Streamline Your Product from Concept to Market with Gembah
Product innovation, product creation, and product variance are the key lifelines to any Amazon e-commerce business. Unless you are very lucky, simply putting one product out there and hoping that pays off is not going to be sustainable to your business. Today’s guest helps people working with overseas importers to navigate the realm of product development, sourcing, and all that any e-commerce business owner needs to achieve success and save some money in the process.
Zack Leonard became interested in product design and importation after starting out as a consultant and working in operations and strategy. His interest was piqued when he started delving into what goes on in product manufacturing. Zack started to research and test what was missing in the market. What started as quality control team on the ground overseas has grown into a full-service product innovation platform that brings in experts all along the product creation, development, and delivery chain.
- How Zack got started in manufacturing and the story of Gembah.
- Zack walks us through a case study of a client Gembah has helped streamline product design and delivery.
- How Gembah is able to shave off thousands and create value for your business with his services.
- The design process their teams go through with clients.
- How relationship building is essential to the services Zack offers.
- How Gembah’s consolidated shipping tactics help clients.
- The process is for new product manufacturing launch – goals for an awesome product.
- Mutual nondisclosure steps taken by Gembah and their clients.
- The importance of visiting the factories and making that culture stop overseas.
Mark: Joe as you and I both know product innovation product creation and variance on your product is one of the key lifelines to any Amazon business. You can’t just launch a product or if you can you’re very, very lucky. Most businesses don’t just launch a product and live with that forever. You need to be able to come up with new products to feed your audience, to feed your; complete your customers in some way. Then I understand you have Zack Leonard on who his company helps with just that; product creation, sourcing, reducing COGS. Tell me a little bit about the conversation.
Joe: Yeah. Zack is from a company called Gembah and he came to us through some people that have bought some sizable businesses with us. People that I would say are smarter than us and are in the e-commerce world working with Chinese manufacturers developing new products, sourcing new products, and just focused on all aspects of importing from I should say overseas. It’s not always China. But it was a fascinating conversation because a lot of people that we talked to whether they’re buyers or sellers want to expand their product line. A lot of conversation that you and I have with entrepreneurs we repeat over and over it’s not just about the top line it’s the bottom line and you shouldn’t just drive revenue and not focus on reducing your cost of goods sold or repackaging or stop shipping things by air and do it by freight things of that nature. Zack’s company focuses on all of that and it’s right there in Austin, Texas and he just goes through all of it here in the podcast and it’s fascinating. I think a lot of people are going to say where the hell was this guy when I started my business because you’re going to want to use him and similar services like his.
Mark: You know I was just talking to somebody right before you and I jumped on this call here where he had an idea. He’s a consultant on a lot of different things and he was asking me about product packaging and Amazon businesses whether or not there would be a market out there from amazon sellers who want to save some money on their packaging and maybe getting better rates from Amazon in that regard. And I tried to explain to them that yes people are interested but in the Amazon eco-space, there is this element of there’s so many opportunities to either cut costs or grow revenue. Most people are focusing on this; the 20% that’s going to have the 80% effect, right? And so if you can hire somebody like Zack; if you can find a company like Zack’s that can come in and take care of maybe the other 80% that you’re ignoring because you’re simply too dang busy with all the other stuff that’s on your plate that can be a really key win for your company.
Joe: Yeah I think it’s an opportunity to at least listen to it have a conversation I think that; you know I asked him throughout this is not, by the way, a pitch for his services. I asked for golden nuggets all the way through. What are people doing right? What are they doing wrong? What would you advise them to do? How can they cut their own costs and things of that nature? So I think it’s going to help people if they’re in the e-commerce world now and it’s an opportunity. You could talk to him at the end. We gave out his information. It’s Gembah.com G-E-M-B-A-H but listen to it, it’s fascinating. Some of the tidbits he gives throughout the entire podcast are really valuable.
Joe: Hey folks it’s Joe Valley from Quiet Light Brokerage and today I’ve got Zack Leonard on the line with me from Gembah. Zack welcome to the Quiet Light Podcast.
Zack: Thanks, Joe. I’m really excited to be here; excited for the next 30, 30-ish minutes to talk more about what we do and a bit more of our background.
Joe: Let’s jump right into that. Tell us about what you do, what Gembah is, and who you serve.
Zack: Yeah. So I am the founder and president of Gembah. We are a product innovation platform. So we help businesses both e-commerce Amazon and promotional products companies and retail brands create and manufacture products. So we have a team of engineers, designers that help more with the product innovation side of things. So helping bring ideas to life through sketches, design, whole renderings, CAD drawings. And then we have a team in China that focuses on the manufacturing once those collaterals for your projects are done; for those cool products that are you trying to make. We turn it over to our team to help put it out to our factory network which is over 500 now. And then once you’re into production we do a bunch of quality control measures and really look at it as if you are physically there in the factory yourself to take photos and videos along the way to make sure that we’re scrutinizing the way that you would not a third party necessarily. Really we see ourselves as a partner in crime in that sense and then once everything’s ready to go we help with the logistics as well. So really a turnkey operation to make sure that you can get these cool products to the market in a very fast manner. So typically we can get them out in like three or six months.
Joe: Where the hell were you when I was in the e-commerce world dang because I needed you?
Zack: Actually during that, I keep hearing that but we’re here now.
Joe: Yeah, I actually; two different e-commerce worlds, first for me it was supplements; digestive health supplements that was US-based. But we had another; my wife had a different product that we manufactured in China or she manufactured in China but we had no idea what we’re doing. So I love this subject and I think there’s probably a lot of people that are listening going oh my God where has this guy been? So tell us that, where have you been? How did you get started doing what you do? What’s your background prior to Gembah?
Zack: Yeah, so it’s actually unrelated completely. I started as a consultant many moons ago; my prior life. And really that helped me organized chaos and kept me that operational and financial way of thinking. And I moved into a role where I was running the Texas markets for a company called Instacart which is same-day delivery. And you get to see explosive growth and I was employee I think number 40 or something like that so moving a market from zero to doing seven-plus figures in a week in GMV which is hiring nonstop. Basically we have to hire 75 to 100 people a day. It is nuts.
Zack: Yeah and then from there I moved into a strategy role at a company called Dropoff which was focused on more than just grocery delivery but more to same-day courier delivery. And while I was there I started to pick an interest into manufacturing side of things; it always, Show How It’s Made always resonates with me. I like to watch that show. And then I met a couple of people that were into the manufacturing. One of them owns a pet products company. And he really opened my eyes to what really goes on into that. And the whole time I was thinking man there’s really a problem that was on for a product company to try and find a good resource to really make products overseas especially. So I started doing a ton of research and then I started to really just test this theory out of what is missing in the market out there. And it started off as really just trying to be like a quality control company seeing like how we can help and we’ve just been like a team on the ground overseas. And as we continue to grow over the last couple of years we’ve started to say okay so just being a; there’s tons of companies out there that do this already. What is the it-factor for Gembah? It is really offering that full-scale design plus manufacturing offering where we can take something from idea all the way through the entire process. And the reason for that is I’ve seen a couple of my friends go through that process and they work with a designer maybe and then it’s kind of disjointed. You have that experience where you go in the designer and they don’t know if they can actually get that product manufactured. They go to the manufacturer and they say okay well what do I have to change? You can make a mass scale production here. Then you have to go back to designer and designers are charging them and then the manufacturer says well that’s wrong. This whole process is just kind of just not straightforward. And so what we’re trying to do is bringing experts along the way at each different part of the cycle so start off with the product design part of it and have experts that have made products and manufacturing at full scale manufacturing before and then sync them up with the factory so that you don’t have that lack of communication; that gap in communication. That’s resonating really well especially in the Amazon space. We’ve started to even expand our offering beyond just the product design into more of a research-based company to help with; you know there’s tools out there like Helium 10 and so but we have a team over there that can help really expedite that process and enhance the Helium 10 experience.
Joe: So expand, you mean expand beyond their current set of SKUs to a wider product line; is that what you mean by expand?
Zack: Yeah, so let’s say that you have a search term that you find that is really hot right now. There’s a lot of investment that could go on into making a product completely new from scratch or incrementally innovating and paying some high design fees if you don’t know what you’re doing. What we can do is actually say okay you find this hot search term let’s go talk to our factory networks and find out what the latest and greatest technology is for that search term and find out a product that isn’t on the market yet and then you just go sell it, right? And we’ve done that successfully now for a couple of our customers and they actually have a seven-figure product now because of our research.
Joe: That’s amazing. Let’s talk real-life examples if we can without naming names or products or anything like that but can you walk us through a relationship that you have where they’ve come to you, met with you, sat down with you and your team and what you did for them in terms of helping them design and develop the product and expand and find those manufacturers and so on and so forth.
Zack: Absolutely so there’s a customer that we have that’s an eight-figure seller now and they came to us with a couple of issues. One is they’re one of those companies that acquires a bunch of other smaller sellers and tries to roll them up. And so a lot of those sellers when they sell they made it from their factories on Alibaba or they may have gone over and met the guy in a subway or something like that and they’re taking those guys at face value. Well first thing that we do with them is help optimize their supply chain. So if they have a bunch of different companies we’re helping them really understand are they getting the best pricing, are they scaling the correct way, or maybe if they have similar products are we able to condense them into one single factory or maybe two factories instead of three different factories that they have. And so when you talk about that you’re talking about giving them buying power. You’re talking about giving them scale at the factory. I mean able to shave off like 20 to 30% of their product cost so at their bottom line we’re talking; you’re adding a ton of revenue or saving a ton of cost to their bottom line so that’s kind of the first thing we did for this company. The next thing we did is…
Joe: Pause right there just so that people understand and I maybe I don’t need to do this because the audience is incredibly smart and adept but if you’re selling; simple math 1,000 units a month and you’re saving a $10 product cost. And correct me if I’m not getting this right Zack but $10 product cost and you’re shaving off 20% that’s from manufacturer to FBA in this case $2 per unit or $2,000 per month what that does everyone is that adds 24,000 to the bottom line and if your business is worth 3, 4 times that’s going to add $7,500,000 to the overall value of your business when you eventually do exit it as well. So we’re always talking about it’s not the top line that only matters but working with some of it Zack and improving that bottom line and the efficiencies and the profitability; that’s what really drives value. It’s not just the top line. I’m sorry to interrupt but keep going. Okay, so you’re working with this particular client to reduce their cost of goods sold and streamline and go on.
Zack: That’s right. So that’s kind of the first set of operations that we helped them do. The next set is they identified a bunch of SKUs that they want to add to their brand or add to their existing brands. The first step is if they want to just white label a product because they see how we’ve been able to give them better pricing they’ll come to us and say hey I just want to go white label this, I found a hot product, let’s go find it. They set a price target and the quantity and 9 times out of 10 hit that price starting in quantity and get them adding SKUs; adding value to their overall brand, diversifying their brand, giving that perpetual continuous flywheel of bringing out new products that are really reasonable clip in terms of time. Like I said it’s like three to six months.
Joe: And they’re using a software like Helium 10 to see what kind of sales are already occurring. They know that that particular product is a hot seller. They’re just going to jump on the bandwagon so to speak?
Zack: Sometimes yes I think they also have their own proprietary software that they use.
Joe: There’s the Jungle Scout, there’s the Helium 10, there’s a lot of things out there that can help with it but that’s what they’re doing is to research goods; okay this is something that sells well? I’m going to go ahead. Okay, I got it.
Zack: And if they want to differentiate from that then they’ll come to us and say okay I want to make a new or incremental innovation on this product. I looked at maybe some of the reviews or I have some sort of test market that I go out and look at and say hey what do you think about this product and they give some feedback and then they say I need to make X Y Z enhancements on a certain product. Our team will design it really fast. Usually we get those designs back in about a week we. And then we go put it out to our factory network and then they’re able to again get on that flywheel of creating new products in three to six months. So obviously it’s just a straight sourcing white label gig that can take a lot less time. That can take like a month maybe to get a product out to market. And then if it’s more of a design-focused project then it can take like three to six months.
Joe: Okay, and the designers are industrial designers doing real 3D renderings, things of that nature?
Zack: Exactly right. So our process really starts off with sketching. So we’ll do two to three sketches of each concept based on a conversation or a full project kickoff we have for each one of the SKUs and from there we then focus in on getting to that final rendering and then we’ll then prepare you and enable you to have the real blueprints of the product; so the CAD drawings, all the build materials, all that stuff you need to really look like a professional when you go and start sourcing overseas. One of the biggest problems I see with a lot of sellers is that they try and go talk to these factories on Alibaba and they go and say oh I want to make X Y Z changes to your product not really giving them that collateral and saying these are the exact changes I want to make. And so the factories know that you’re a fish in that circumstance. They know that they can take advantage of you. You go to them with a design sheet; full build materials, a full CAD drawing to show them exactly what you want, they’re going to take you a lot more serious. And so what we’re really trying to do is prepare you for that conversation whether it’s through us or whether it’s on your own factory network but we want to make sure you look like a professional. You can start getting better pricing because of that.
Joe: Okay. So if I was the person that had the e-commerce store or Amazon business or both I can choose. I can take your renderings and go direct to my own manufacturer or I could have you bid it out to your manufacturers as well.
Zack: Yeah, if you want to. We prefer that you build it out with our factories obviously. We tend to have better pricing than the average Joe. But if you want to go off on your own we’re more than happy to do that.
Joe: Yeah, so let’s say that I hired you, do the relationships with your manufacturers transfer to me? Do I get to work with them directly or are you always in the middle?
Zack: Typically if you’re going through us to manage it you’re using us as your face in China or Vietnam or India or wherever we’re doing business with you. And the reason for that is because the relationship building is so important as well as we provide the quality control. So it’s something you just take off your plate. You don’t have to worry about it. You don’t have to fly over to China. We just handle that relation for you. We’re going to show up at the factory, we’re going to build the relationship, we’re going to constantly go to bat for you, try to get better pricing, make sure that if your factory is getting behind or they’re starting to lose scale you can start having a conversation about either bringing you to the next level factory; the higher level or starting to scrutinize the build materials that they give back if it’s an assembly factory and say hey maybe this component that you’re sourcing you’re marking up too much let me go find a different factory for that individual component and get it cheaper for you. So we do that a lot of times with packaging for example; if you go to an assembly factory they’re going to upcharge the packaging. But we have the packaging factory work it that. We can compare pricing to make sure that your assembly factory isn’t up charging you.
Joe: Yeah, every dollar counts again to that bottom line. I had someone on the podcast a few weeks ago; folks if you haven’t heard it somebody bought a business from Quiet Light and within a few weeks they did what Zack is talking about which is exchange out one part and get another part. I think he saved something like $4 per unit and per SKU and they sell thousands on a monthly basis. It was just a tremendous instant equity to his business and overall a bump in bottom-line revenue as well or profit I should say. Do you also do consolidated shipping so that if you’ve got three or four different clients that are manufacturing from different facilities can; do you do partial container load with different folks and reduce their overall shipping costs as well?
Zack: Absolutely if they have factories that are located in essentially the central part of China that goes to the same port we absolutely can handle that. We’re doing that right now with one of our customers actually. They have three different factories after three different products and they’re trying to fill up a 40-foot high container and they want to make sure that we can make it happen for them and that’s something we do pretty easily. So yeah we definitely do that.
Joe: Educate me. Make me sound smarter than I am. Is it LTL less than container load is that what the acronym is?
Zack: LCL, less than container load.
Joe: LCL. Okay, thank you. Thank you very much. Alright, I’ll try to remember that. I’ll get it wrong the next time we do this and people are going to go, God, Joe you just can’t get that right. But I don’t do what you do so it’s okay. I don’t need to know what you know that’s why people. Alright, so the design aspect going back to that again, how does somebody approach you? What’s the ideal situation; is it do you have a form on your website site, do they just come to you and they have a conversation with you, how does it start, how does it work?
Zack: Yep. So we have a form on our website which kind of gives you just the basic Name, Email, Phone, What you’re trying to make, and then we’ll have a conversation with you about what you’re trying to make and we’ll start the conversation with understanding if there’s patent issues or some like that so that we can have an understanding if there’s any legal obstacles we have to overcome. After that, it’s really just talking with our industrial designer to pull out every information from you that they need to do their job which is who’s your inspiration, what’s your end-user goal, all the stuff you want to have in terms of making an awesome product and then we go to work. I mean we try to make this process as simple and easy for anyone who wants to come interact with us.
Joe: So when we do valuations at Quiet Light which I hope we’re doing well in advance of somebody exiting their business so that they get more value. Oftentimes people say well I don’t really want to share my information with you until we have a nondisclosure agreement on file. Will you send that to me? Do you start with a nondisclosure agreement on file because you’ve got an awful lot of information about somebody and you can decide to go into the e-commerce business yourself?
Zack: Yeah. We won’t have a conversation with you until you sign a nondisclosure because of that. It’s mutual. We make sure that all the IP is protected; all the conversations are protected because our business is really secretive, right? So that we make sure that everything is completely sound in terms of legal and protection for the IP.
Joe: So theoretically if I decided to work with you, do I really never have to go to China?
Zack: Never. I mean we encourage you to because it’s always great to meet the factory and our team. But in terms of like reality, no you don’t have to. Because we have someone who’s going on your behalf showing up at the factory doing pretty much everything that you would do and they understand the culture because they’re locals.
Joe: You know we had Dave Ryan on the podcast and he’s from EcomCrew and a big part of his contribution to that is manufacturing in China and he’s an expert at it and his wife is actually from China originally and he lived there for a long time. And he talked about the benefit of that relationship. I’ve heard people talk about it when they go over and they meet the manufacturers and they go out to dinner drinks and drinks and drinks and drinks as understand. It changes things. They’re willing to give you perhaps better pricing, better terms, things of that nature. Do you fully replace that or should a business owner also; it’s still your relationship with the manufacturer but should they get over there as well? I mean what do you; I mean you said you think that or you think that they should go over but truly they don’t ever have to. What’s the benefit of them going if it’s your relationship with your manufacturer?
Zack: Yeah there is a business culture called Guanxi in China which is exactly what that is. It’s basically how they operate in terms of the business language and how they operate from the business culture. And what they enjoy is the face to face interaction. There’s a lot more conversations that can be had. You can learn about their family. You can talk about what kind of food they like to have, all that kind of stuff. There’s a lot of value that comes out of building the relationship and like you said they’ll start to give more concessions. There’s a ton of people going to them every single day on Alibaba or in person that wants to do business with them but they value the people who are there for the long term and the people who really make an effort. And that’s because that’s just how their culture is. So while you don’t have to do that because we’re taking care of that we definitely enjoy, recommend, whatever you want to call it, you personally as the business owner of your business going over there. Maybe it’s not every year; maybe it’s every other year, maybe if you want to go there every six months, whatever it is we help facilitate that. So if you show up we’re going to take you with our team over there. So you get to meet both our team which is also a part of it as well going to the factory. So yeah we’ll take you straight from the plane to the hotel you choose. If you want to stay in our place you can stay at our place. And then from there, it’s going to the factories.
Joe: I love that. That’s great.
Zack: So you get to meet our team, see our office, if you want stay in our apartment we’re more than happy to but really we give that white coat service in terms of making sure that you again look like a professional and look great in terms of the culture aspect over there. So we’re just bridging that gap.
Joe: That’s awesome. It’s standard business stuff and that’s why we do video in addition to the audio on these because it’s; look we can’t meet everybody face to face but it’s great to be able to see the whites and odds and talk to them when we talk to people all over the world. Talk to us about what are the biggest mistakes; let’s say somebody doesn’t want to use Gembah but educate them, help them, what are the biggest mistakes that e-commerce product owners, and marketers, FBA owners, what are they doing wrong at a dramatic level?
Zack: That’s simple. I think the number one thing I would take away is going to Alibaba unprepared. And the reason I say that is because Alibaba did a great job at bringing the factories to mass market. But they don’t do a great job of explaining how the process works. And so there’s a lot of things that you can go straight to Alibaba and get wrong. So I’m sure you’ve experienced this or maybe people; your audience has experienced this. We go to Alibaba, you ask for a price quote or something, you get a sample and then they change the price. Or you ask for an iteration of something they give you a price and then they make the sample and it’s completely wrong. Or you order a product and then it’s completely defective before you come back. I mean again this is just a software platform into a process that has been going on for thousands of years, right? Software is not going to necessarily overcome the hurdles that exist continuously in manufacturing which is defective products, building that culture, and building a relationship. So those are the three things that Alibaba really doesn’t fix. And so what I would recommend again is to hire someone locally to fix those problems because there is a culture gap. You do need to build a relationship and you need to make sure that your products are not coming back defective. So those are the three things I think that are the most important in terms of doing business overseas that most people overlook.
Joe: And what is the simplest thing somebody can do to reduce their costs?
Zack: It depends on which part of the process they are in. So if they’re; if you’re talking about building something from scratch it’s going to the factories and getting multiple bids with an actual blueprint. Like I always use the analogy of building a house; you wouldn’t build a house without an architect. You shouldn’t build a product without a designer and an engineer. You’re just going to cut corners. They’re going to take their interpretation of what you’re trying to make and their interpretation is let’s make this the cheapest way possible and charge the most they possibly can.
Joe: It seems logical when you put it that way.
Zack: Right. I mean who wouldn’t do that? It’s the same thing when you’re building a home. If you go straight to the builder and you say I want to build a 2,500 square foot house. Okay, I’m going to build my interpretation of that and I’m going to put it up as fast as I can and as cheap as possible. Why wouldn’t they do that? That’s the way that we approach it.
Joe: Okay. Any tricks or tips or advice in terms of shipping which is a big cost to freight when people are shipping products from China to Amazon or to their own 3PL or whatever the case might be; any tips there?
Zack: Yeah. I think again always get multiple bids for that and then always make sure that your compliance is in order especially if you’re building a new product. These products have never been out in the market before. There’s a ton of compliance measures that need to be taken to make sure that they’re labeled correctly. Like for example if you’re selling a children’s product. They need to be tested. They need to have a CA Prop 65, ASDM testing, a bunch of other testing that needs to happen and be labeled a certain way. If it’s intended for infants it need to be choke; make sure there’s no small parts that can choke them. They need to be labeled on the packaging as well a certain way. So those are all things that if you don’t do those correctly they can get flagged at customs and ultimately turned back. And the factory is not going to reimburse you for the mistake that you made in not going to your compliance in order. And so that is a business killer. So that is the number one tip I can give to someone in terms of logistics and compliance is make sure you have all that in order before you bring a new product into the market. Those are all things that we help do obviously.
Joe: Good advice and you do that again but what the heck is Gembah? How did you come up with that name? What does it mean?
Zack: In Japanese Kaizen manufacturing theory there’s the word Gembah which means the place where value is created on the manufacturing floor. So that is where it’s based off of. In Chinese gembah means let’s do this. So it’s kind of a dual meaning both from the Japanese manufacturing and then the fun side which is gembah.
Joe: Very cool. I got it. You just mentioned manufacturing; I want to go back to something you said earlier which was your manufacturers in China or Thailand or wherever they may be you named a few countries. How difficult is it now in this economy and this environment with all the trade wars to find something that’s being manufactured currently in China and get a quote on their factories in Thailand and the Philippines and so on that can do the same thing?
Zack: Yeah that’s a great question and we get that a lot now from our customers and I think there are some products that are more easily transferred to a different country. If you’re talking cut and sew apparel for places like Vietnam, glassware you can get in India pretty well, if you’re talking injection molded items it’s starting to pop up in Vietnam. You just have to make sure that you understand they move a lot slower. Especially in places like Vietnam, Cambodia, Philippines, and the reason for that is because they don’t have the raw materials that places like India and China do. So they’re importing almost everything from places like China, South Korea, India to get into their factories. So that adds time to the lead time of you making a product. So most Amazon sellers for example don’t have the luxury of waiting 60 to 90 days to get a product into their hands of their consumers whereas these big e-commerce brands who spend a lot more time and money on R and D and come up with new products maybe 12 months in advance they can take that luxury and move their production over to different countries. So that’s what you’re seeing like the Nike the Adidas of the world moving into Vietnam or moved a lot of the production into Vietnam because they can do that. They have the operational capacity to do that.
Joe: So for the six, seven, eight-figure brands that we know and we talked to is it worth it time-wise and financially; are they saving costs in terms of cost of goods sold or are they just comfortable knowing that they’re not going to have to deal with any trade war issues in the future?
Zack: I think that’s a true business decision. While I would say the prices that we’ve seen between India and China specifically are not competitive. China’s way more cost-friendly in terms of like apples to apples comparison on the exact same products I’ve seen 5x in India. Vietnam is pretty competitive because everyone is starting to knock at their door. So I’ve seen garment and apparel prices go up by 4 to 7% just cost of good before you get to the shipping and logistics side of things. So they’re smart. They know that everyone’s trying to come to them and their production lines are moving at a high clip now. So I think it’s really you have to understand the entire landscape of your true landed cost and lead time before you actually make that decision of moving production over to Vietnam because it’s not as easy as it sounds operationally.
Joe: Right. Makes sense. Are you renegotiating with any of your Chinese manufacturers to offset the tariffs?
Zack: Of course.
Joe: They’re okay with that; what are they like?
Zack: Yeah, I mean it’s a geopolitical issue that’s going on and they don’t like it either. Whoever side they end up taking is on them and whoever side we as Americans take is on us but there’s certain things you can do to help them share the tax burden. There’s certain things you can do especially with molds that you can start recouping your mold costs if you want to create some injection molded item. That’s the kind of stuff that we do and we’re talking about making you look like a professional. These are the things that we are bringing to the table when we start the negotiation process. And so because of the geopolitical landscape that we have this is part of the conversation now.
Joe: It sounds like a really, really important conversation to have. How do people find you, how do they get started, that kind of thing?
Zack: Yeah. So the best approach would be to go on our website www.gembah.com G-E-M-B-A-H.com and fill out a form and we’ll be in touch with you as soon as you fill that out.
Joe: Geographically where are you located?
Zack: So we are headquartered in Austin, Texas; the barbecue capital of the world.
Joe: And all you have to do today is put it on your dashboard because it’s; I’ve talked to people in August here right so it’ll grow right there. Yeah, I love Austin; lots of folks down there that we work with.
Zack: Yup, and then our office in China is in the southern part in a place called Dongguan which is close to the Guangzhou area; it’s the manufacturing capital for the south.
Joe: So you get the grilling capital and barbecue capital and the manufacturing capital. I think the folks here in North Carolina may argue with you about the barbecue capital but I’m for me.
Zack: Yeah we all love your sauce; I’ve come to learn that it’s a saucy type of barbecue. I prefer the sauceless more of a dry rub which fits me well in Texas but I still like the Carolina barbecue. It’s great.
Joe: I won’t say I disagree. Alright man, it’s been great having you on the podcast. I’m looking forward to hearing some great successes from some of your clients who I know. I know a few that are working with you; people that have bought businesses from Quiet Light and sold to Quiet Light working with you now too. So it’s been great having you on the podcast. I look forward to having the audience reach out to you and work with you and learn and get better pricing and better products out in the future. Thanks for your time today.
Zack: Thank you, Joe. I’m really, really glad I could be here. I appreciate it.
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