Becoming an Apple reseller? Help needed!

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by hotwire132002, Dec 14, 2004.

  1. hotwire132002 macrumors 65816

    hotwire132002

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2004
    Location:
    Cadillac, MI
    #1
    Well, considering the nearest Apple reseller is about an hour drive, I thought Cadillac could use an Apple reseller--and I thought I'd start it. Only one problem--Apple requires $100,000 in income per year for you to become a reseller! I guess in bigger cities that isn't a problem, but around here, no way there's going to be that kind of income from Apple sales!

    So, here's my question--does anyone know of any wholesale suppliers of Apple products? I'm not talking computer systems, just smaller items like the iPod, iSight, and software (as well as accessories like AirPort cards, etc).

    Also, does anyone know of a wholesale supplier for Third-party Apple products (like software and accessories)?

    I'm hoping to find a way to pull this off--it would be really nice to have an Apple reseller around--and even better to BE the reseller!
     
  2. Hoef macrumors 6502a

    Hoef

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2004
    Location:
    Houston, TX..... (keep walking)
    #2
    Could you tell us more about the requirement? .... You have to make $100k in Apple sales to become an Apple reseller ... or just $100k in anything?
     
  3. hotwire132002 thread starter macrumors 65816

    hotwire132002

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2004
    Location:
    Cadillac, MI
    #3
    By the sound of it, Apple has to make $100k off your business.

    Any ideas how I can resell Apple products without doing that?
     
  4. jimsowden macrumors 68000

    jimsowden

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2003
    Location:
    NY
    #4
    The only two are Ingram Micro and Tech Data, both of which require Apple Authorization to distribute anything apple.
     
  5. hotwire132002 thread starter macrumors 65816

    hotwire132002

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2004
    Location:
    Cadillac, MI
    #5
    What's "Apple Authorization"? Does that mean you have to do the 100k a year thing?
     
  6. jimsowden macrumors 68000

    jimsowden

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2003
    Location:
    NY
    #6
    Pretty much, you need an indirect reseller contract.
     
  7. hotwire132002 thread starter macrumors 65816

    hotwire132002

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2004
    Location:
    Cadillac, MI
    #7
    I take it that's a reseller contract with Apple, not with Tech Data or Ingram Micro?
     
  8. realityisterror macrumors 65816

    realityisterror

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2003
    Location:
    Snellville, GA
    #8
    even if you could find these computers wholesale, no one's going to buy them from you if you're not apple authorized...
    perhaps you're wasting your time?? :confused:

    reality
     
  9. hotwire132002 thread starter macrumors 65816

    hotwire132002

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2004
    Location:
    Cadillac, MI
    #9
    I don't really want to sell the computers--there's not enough market (around here).

    I'd like to sell iPods and Apple accessories, but there's no way to make 100k a year off that. I wish there was another way to do it...
     
  10. CanadaRAM macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #10
    > The only two are Ingram Micro and Tech Data, both of which require Apple Authorization to distribute anything apple.

    Nope. There are two classes of Apple products: Authorized Dealer and General

    Ingram Micro, Tech Data and Synnex (the merger of Synnex, EMJ, Daisytek and Merisel) are wholesale distributors. You need to do the regular credit application and trade reference process to become a wholesale customer of theirs. Then, you can sell the General line: iPods, OSX, Apple Software, iSight, AppleCare without any further authorization.

    If you want to sell the computers, you have to provide MAJOR business plans and financial backing to Apple to get approved, you have to stock product, have trained staff, a showroom, everything like that. All for 3% margin on the product.

    The thing to do in your situation would be to set up for the general products with the distributors, then establish a relationship with an authorized dealer for supplying new machines to your customers. Or buy through the Apple Store for the free shipping. You're not going to make anything on the machines, but you keep the customers happy and they buy the accessories and service from you. Trust me, it ain't worth it to be a Apple computer dealer.

    Tip: Pay the Apple dealer with a premium charge card that at least gets you air miles or 1% cash back. But don't let the customers pay you with a charge card, because you'll lose money on the merchant discount.

    Thanks
    Trevor
    CanadaRAM.com
     
  11. Rod Rod macrumors 68020

    Rod Rod

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2003
    Location:
    Las Vegas, NV
    #11
    Trevor that's an awesome idea. If he gets in good with the reseller, they may even offer him a tiny commission on the sales he generates, and the customers he brings to them could use their charge accounts with the reseller. He'd be like a satellite salesman. (Not selling satellites though).
     
  12. iJon macrumors 604

    iJon

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2002
    #12
    It's a tough business. That 100,000 grand will just get you in the door. You will have to spend money on the building, internet, employees, plus enough cash to actually order everything to sell and keep stock. Then if your smart you will spend the money and get certified in everything so you can repair machines, which are pretty damn hard tests. Then you need to be able to run this bad boy for about a year without profit or so to survive. Also, who is going to run it, you going to leave school?

    I've considering doing it myself. We have a neighboring town about 30 minutes away that gets many requests for opening a store for them. My parents said they would front the money if I wanted to establish it down there. I see all the work my parents do and it's a ton, don't know if I'm ready for that yet.

    jon
     
  13. Chip NoVaMac macrumors G3

    Chip NoVaMac

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2003
    Location:
    Northern Virginia
    #13
    I like your gumption. What you may want to do is contact another independent Apple dealer and set up a store using their name and buying channel. Safety in numbers....
     
  14. hotwire132002 thread starter macrumors 65816

    hotwire132002

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2004
    Location:
    Cadillac, MI
    #14
    That's EXACTLY what I need! Thanks for the help, I'm going to check up on that and maybe something will work out!
     
  15. Chip NoVaMac macrumors G3

    Chip NoVaMac

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2003
    Location:
    Northern Virginia
    #15
    You should really look in to be part of an existing Apple dealer.

    As Apple tries to consolidate their dealers, being part of an existing dealer can only help you in the future.
     
  16. Kwyjibo macrumors 68040

    Kwyjibo

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2002
    #16
    i think you should probably pick a project and stick with it, like become really good with the movie stuff or do apple reseller stuff FT and get one of them established instead of half your effort to one.
     
  17. hotwire132002 thread starter macrumors 65816

    hotwire132002

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2004
    Location:
    Cadillac, MI
    #17
    That's a very good point. I have trouble sticking to just one project, but I'ts something I really should do.

    I have a call in to the nearest Apple reseller (Computer Haus in Traverse City, about an hour away) about becoming an "affiliate" and selling Apple products as a "satellite" store. (Kind of like the Mini stores that Apple has). If that works, I'm going for it. If not, I'm going to work harder on focusing on one project. ;)
     
  18. Mantat macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2003
    Location:
    Montréal (Canada)
    #18
    First of all, I think that you should think a bit more about your project.

    Apple is the worst company to deal with when you are a reseller. They sale their product via their webstore at the same prices as yours and often have rebates that you cant really beat.

    You will be slave of their supply chain. I know a reseller who hasnt been able to get a PM or iMAC for the whole summer. Thats a lot of lost sale!

    Margins are not THAT good. 100k$ sales wont even give you an income of 20$k. Do you really think you can live when that? And you are not even sure that you can pull 100k$ sales in the first place!

    Apple wants its dealer to carry large inventory while they dont supply a road map for product improvement so from one day to the next your inventory can lse 20%.

    Apple 'forces' you to sale Apple care and their over priced LCD with any PMG5 if you want to have any resellers advantages.

    So reading all this, how do you feel about becoming an Apple reseller? ;-)

    Furtunatly, there are options:
    - specialize in selling used mac. I have a friend who does that and make a nice living
    - I dont know how to call this in english but you can 'rent' computers to enterprise. If you can get a good client list this is like a printing machine for macs because contrary to pc they dont lose too much value over time and the fiscal laws are made for pcs. Trust me, if you can rent a good volume you are in for a crap load of cash!
    - become a software reseller for a specialist product that only work on the mac and sells mac at the same time, pre installed in pre configured. At least you will get a nice margin on these.
    - become an Apple 'installer'. Find corporate client, order the machine for them, pre install everything they need, install the hardware, give some formation, support them, make money! You need to be a good seller and have good contact to do this but once your foot is in the door its easy to do, especialy after a big virus asssault!

    But what ever you do, DONT invest time and energy to become a reseller. Its a waste of time and energy!
     
  19. maya macrumors 68040

    maya

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2004
    Location:
    somewhere between here and there.
    #19
    Good luck HotWire132002, on starting up an Apple resellers business, it might be a good thing for you.

    However I have noticed as of late that Apple really wants to sell they own products online and in stores, they are trying to step away from the resellers since it costs too much to do all the paper work, training, so on and so forth. Plus the Apple store is really an extension of Apple online they buy it cheaper than what a reseller who buy it at cost.

    It might or might not be worth it for you that is something you will have to figure out I also know that resellers cannot offer student pricing, yet Apple Store is allowed this. Its not a a very beneficial business unless you plan on opening a store in a business district and even then many companies get company pricing on Apple products directly.

    Apple resellers really do not make much of a profit however if you love what work you do I say go for it. :) A positive experience.
     
  20. dotnina macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2004
    #20
    Not to be critical here, but you're only 16, right? I know there are young people who start hugely successful businesses, but at 16, I'm not sure a person can have the know-how and contacts to do such a thing.

    You seem very motivated to do things, but for now you might want to concentrate on small-scale projects (like the film thing perhaps) and your education. Perhaps start reading books from some people you look up to. Perhaps start reading about what you need to start a business. I think it'll help you set a good foundation for doing some impressive things in a few years.
     
  21. hotwire132002 thread starter macrumors 65816

    hotwire132002

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2004
    Location:
    Cadillac, MI
    #21
    Nope, I'm 15. 16 on Tuesday :)

    I agree with everyone who said not to go through with this project--I have to focus on video production. I want to get out of the computer stuff anyway. Anyone need video production services? I need clients. Badly. :(
     
  22. Kwyjibo macrumors 68040

    Kwyjibo

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2002
    #22
    One more thing nobody mentioned is that you're too young to sign a contract, get a lease, have credit or a billion other things you need to start a small business.
     
  23. Chip NoVaMac macrumors G3

    Chip NoVaMac

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2003
    Location:
    Northern Virginia
    #23
    Good points. I know a few years back Apple forced the company that I worked for to buy I think it was the eMac's/iMac's (before the LKCD screen). They had very strict stock balancing rules.

    Many independents can only make it by also doing repairs also.
     
  24. Chip NoVaMac macrumors G3

    Chip NoVaMac

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2003
    Location:
    Northern Virginia
    #24
    As said your age is a problem.

    Given your interest in video production, that could be a good side business to add to the bottom line of the Apple stuff. In the end you would be better off looking at doing this after college though.
     
  25. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    Joined:
    May 19, 2002
    #25
    Not a big problem if he lies. ;)

    Of course that would make most contracts and debt, null and void if things explode -- like those darn personal guarantees on the credit lines and leases.
     

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