I have continued to look for the new structure- and have continued to talk to more and more people.  Wisdom of Crows keeps reminding me that I will get a better solution by collecting multiple inputs.   Without going details,  I see VERY significant savings by setting up new structures – the other day I figured I was about 90% there.  Today, with new info, I feel like I’m 70% – but I’m 20% smarter!   Anyways – I think soon, the savings of the new structure will warrant action – and given the payback could be counted on in just a few months – if I need to re-do it again – I can and it will be that much easier next time.

Neat thing today is that I have been able to reach out to a competitor of my.   Over 5 years we have been quite adversarial with each other,  although the more I learned and saw the guy operated, the rules that he played by became more clear to me – and I could understand and respect the actions he took against me before.   I was so, so close to suing him about 3 years ago – just need to file – and I likely would have succeed and if not tied him up  for a long time taking HIM out of his business focus.

BUT I had decided then that the lawsuit would consume to much of my time and that my time  would have been better spent growing the business.    I’m glad I made that decision, as now, we are able to talk and although we are still competing, a potential collaboration is emerging.   Weather it goes anywhere or not,  has a lot to be seen, but I guess I had a choice back then to 100% make an Enemy or have a competitor.   I think having a competitor is better than having an enemy!

Part of this, comes out of trying to focus on the core strength of the companies – which are marketing, customer service, fulfillment, packing, design, sourcing, quality processes, technology, reporting.   We are good at that, very good – and that can be repeatable and scalable.   With pearls, we are ‘manufacturing’ much of it – we are VERY good at that also BUT, and this is the big BUT it doesn’t scale.  For me to have 100 sites in 5 years, I cannot possibly develop 100 manufacturing companies – doesn’t work.


On a fun note, I gave my self 30 minutes today and setup a new website for Alex, Alexlepa.com – I still feel like such a tech junking, loving to do ftp, domains, etc.   Fun!