In a challenging economic climate, it has been observed that an increasing number of individuals prioritise price above all other factors when making purchasing decisions. This preference for price comparison is mainly due to the simplicity of comparing numbers, which often leads consumers to overlook the hidden costs associated with their choices. Conversely, people may struggle to evaluate and comprehend other aspects such as the specifications of machines, the value of reliable backup support, and the availability of spare parts. Consequently, this lack of understanding often results in consumers solely focusing on price comparisons.
There are numerous methods to acquire machines, such as importing directly from China, purchasing from local storage, buying from AM.CO.ZA company, or engaging with other local dealers. Let me examine and contrast all these options before delving into the specifics.
Option 1, Buy from Factory in China
There are two primary methods of acquisition:
China Import: This involves directly contacting dealers affiliated with the factory and purchasing from them without intermediaries.
Local Import: In this approach, factories collaborate with logistic companies to pre-ship and stock goods in local warehouses here in South Africa. This allows you to still purchase from China but collect your items from a local warehouse.
Option 2: Buy from AM.CO.ZA
AM.CO.ZA is a South African company founded in 2013, specialising in CNC machines, printing machines, and various fabrication machines and solutions. The company provides a proper warranty and has a dedicated service team in place. With a spacious 6000 sqm facility, they offer storage for machinery and spare parts, a service centre, and a training facility. In addition to their standard deals, AM.CO.ZA recently introduced a new concept called “Voetstoots Sales,” which allows customers to purchase products “as is,” without warranty or service, at a significantly discounted price.
A comparison table:
|Buy from China
To explain in detail, let’s start from price, hidden cost and risks involved.
In China, purchasing products is often cheaper due to lower production costs and economies of scale. However, there’s a common misunderstanding that buyers are directly dealing with factories. In reality, they are usually working with export companies that act as intermediaries between the factories and the buyers.
Exporting is a separate industry in China, and these companies typically have English-speaking staff to facilitate communication with international customers. Even if you visit a factory in China, an agent might guide you to an affiliated manufacture.
First-time buyers or those who are not well-versed in the process should be cautious, as there is a risk of being scammed or receiving subpar products. To minimise these risks, it’s advisable to conduct research on potential suppliers, request product samples, and consider employing a reputable sourcing agent or third-party quality control service to ensure a smooth and successful transaction.
When considering the hidden costs associated with purchasing from China, it’s important to be aware that they can often be surprising. Many purchases include shipping, often using terms like CIF (Cost, Insurance, and Freight), which means your product will arrive in a major city like Durban or Johannesburg, depending on the final destination.
However, it’s not as simple as just going to collect the shipment. You’ll likely need to hire a clearing agency to handle the customs process. Additionally, an agent may already be attached to the shipment and will contact you for further services.
For LCL (Less than Container Load) shipping, where you share a container with other merchants, you may be faced with additional charges such as Unpacking Fee, Documentation Fee, Custom Duty, and VAT. Finally, you’ll also need to pay for the shipping cost to get your product from the port to your location.
When considering local imports, it’s important to understand that while the term “local” might imply something different, in this context, it refers to products from China that have already been shipped to South Africa and are ready for purchase.
In China, export companies focus on shipping products to various destinations, including South Africa. To save on shipping costs, they often use FCL (Full Container Load) instead of LCL (Less than Container Load) shipping. By working with logistics companies, the machines are stored in South Africa, waiting for buyers.
Buying local imports can be less risky because you have the opportunity to inspect the machines before making a payment. Additionally, the machines are generally of higher quality due to this inspection process. If you decide to buy a local import, ensure that you pay a local bank account rather than a Chinese company directly. This way, if any unfortunate events occur after the payment, you may have some level of protection under South African law and could potentially recover your money.
On the other hand, purchasing from AM.CO.ZA comes with no risk, as the prices are clear and you can save significantly by opting for their Voetstoots deals.
So, what is Voetstoots?
Voetstoots is a uniquely South African term that comes from Afrikaans, and it simply means “as it.” In the context of Voetstoots sales, it means that you are purchasing the machines “as is,” without any warranty or expectation of service. This sales strategy from AM.CO.ZA is a response to the competition from China imports and Local imports, offering an alternative option for buyers seeking to save money without the added risks associated with those other options.
Since the warranty and services are no longer included in the sales package, which typically account for a substantial part of the machinery cost, AM.CO.ZA will offer a considerable discount on their Voetstoots deals.
Next, let’s dive into warranties and services.
Warranty is not just a simple promise; it’s a legally binding agreement. As you can see, enforcing a warranty from either China Import or Local Import can be impractical. In contrast, AM.CO.ZA provides its clients with warranties on various machines and their subsystems. By giving up the warranty, which is essentially a “Voetstoots” deal, you will notice that the price from AM.CO.ZA is competitive with China or local imports, and in some cases even lower, as most of their machines also come from China. The cost difference is mainly due to local responsibility, like the warranty. By eliminating this factor, there’s no reason to choose China or Local Import over AM.CO.ZA.
In the realm of services, let’s delve into the differences between China Import, Local Import, and Voetstoots deals. When it comes to imported machines, you may be wondering what kind of services you’ll receive.
It’s highly unlikely that a factory will send a technician to your doorstep to help with installation. However, you might find solace in the fact that someone could guide you through the process via WhatsApp. And let’s not forget the unsung heroes of the machine world – freelance technicians who can set up your machine and provide training.
Now, since you’ll be paying for these freelance technicians, it’s only fair to consider them as an option for any machine, regardless of its origin. So, let’s put them aside for a moment and focus on the core differences between China Import, Local Import, and ice comes without the safety net of a warranty or service. To be more specific, the cost of service is what makes this option more budget-friendly. Since AM.CO.ZA began its business in 2013, a treasure trove of resources has been made available to assist you, free of charge. Allow me to regale you with a few examples:
- YouTube Channel: Achievement Matters – A veritable library of nearly 1,000 videos showcasing the inner workings of machines, their benefits to your business, and captivating interviews and case studies.
- YouTube Channel: CNC Tools – A collection of specialised problem-solving videos from the front lines of technician work.
- CNCU.CO.ZA – A vast digital repository of all software, drivers, manuals, and tools for all machines and equipment from AM.CO.ZA. Boasting over 200GB of data, this treasure trove is freely downloadable without any registration or restrictions.
- SoftwareTraining.co.za – A video collection of software usage, step-by-step guides, and tips and tricks, covering almost all software used by AM.CO.ZA. This is the very software you’ll find yourself using.
- SortIT.CO.ZA – A collection of videos for machine installation, maintenance, and problem-solving.
- Buythis.co.za – An online shop where everything AM.CO.ZA sells is organised into easy-to-find categories, complete with all spare parts, consumables, software, and accessories.
In conclusion, the services you’ll get from imported machines mainly involve remote assistance, but don’t discount the local freelance technicians who can lend a hand in setting up and training. And for Voetstoots deals, fear not the lack of warranty or service. For with these resources at your fingertips, you’ll be well-equipped to conquer the universe of discounted offerings.
In other words, neither China Import, Local Import, nor Voetstoots deals from AM.CO.ZA will leave you stranded with a warranty that holds up in the eyes of the law. For imports, you may receive remote assistance from someone in a different time zone who might not speak your language, but only for a limited time. On the other hand, Voetstoots deals offer time-tested resources and reliable training materials, as well as a dependable source for spare parts. And in both scenarios, local freelance technicians can step in to help with setup and training, for an extra fee.
And last, let’s discuss why software options matter a lot.
When you purchase a machine, you might assume you’ll be using it most of the time, but in reality, you’ll likely find yourself immersed in software usage. A top-notch software option not only streamlines the machine production process but also cuts down on training time and unlocks a plethora of machine functions. In essence, it’s the key to a headache-free experience.
The software you’ll receive from China Import or Local Import machines is often pirated, but let’s face it, no one bats an eye. The real issue lies in their user-unfriendliness. You’ll likely be limited to the functions taught by the trainer, unable to explore, experiment, or tweak settings without causing chaos and being unable to restore order. In this scenario, the machine and software reign supreme, leaving you to serve them dutifully and cautiously.
In contrast, the software options from AM.CO.ZA are meticulously designed and developed in Europe and the USA, boasting intuitive interfaces and ease of use. These software choices are regularly updated, and comprehensive training videos can be found on the SoftwareTraining.co.za website, ensuring a smooth and enjoyable experience.
You might wonder why you can’t just use AM.CO.ZA software with your machine. Sometimes it works, but more often, it doesn’t. Industry software relies on an interface between the software and hardware, commonly referred to as firmware or drivers. Without the proper drivers to bridge the gap, you’ll be unable to produce a workable file for the machine or control it directly. The drivers that come with AM.CO.ZA software are specifically designed for the machines they sell.
If you desire a user-friendly software experience with readily available tutorials, frequent updates, and a community of local users who have achieved business success using the software, you should consider purchasing your machines and software from AM.CO.ZA.
Often when someone decides to import a machine directly from China, or purchase from a pre-imported source. The deciding factor is just one, price. Or rather, cheap price. No matter if you are a first time buyer who has no idea the importance of warranty and services, or the repeat buyer, believe yourself already fully understand the machines so warranty and services are less important. You focus on one thing: lowest price.
With the advent of Voetstoots deals from AM.CO.ZA, you now have a superior option to acquire a machine that has a solid market presence, accompanied by a wealth of support materials and readily available spare parts, all at a competitive price, thanks to the exclusion of warranty and service obligations.
Is this the start of a price war?
Not in the slightest. Firstly, AM.CO.ZA has already distinguished itself as the most competitively priced machine marketplace among South African-based machinery companies. Thus, there is no need for it to engage in a self-defeating price war. Secondly, the removal of warranty and service obligations serves as a cost-saving measure, which still provides a fair price for the remaining cost, primarily attributed to the machine itself.
This article is certainly long, and you may still be grappling with the purpose of Voetstoots deals despite the detailed explanations above. You are quite astute, and you can clearly see that the introduction of Voetstoots deals will likely increase machine sales for AM.CO.ZA, while potentially leaving more clients without warranty or service.
The China Imports and Local Imports, by the numbers, are not significant enough to pose a major threat to AM.CO.ZA‘s business. And regardless of how low AM.CO.ZA positions its prices, some clients will continue to buy from China. Also, this loss of market share in Southern Africa has little impact on Chinese factories. The real impact is on other South African-based businesses competing with AM.CO.ZA.
Given these circumstances, there must be a deeper motivation behind the introduction of Voetstoots deals.
Knowledge is power, and education illuminates the path to a brighter future.
Ambitious Academy has a straightforward goal: to nurture more students into the machinery industry, whether they begin with cutting-edge machines and methods or join the Industry 4.0 revolution. By offering more educated young people in the job market, we are laying the foundation for a prosperous future. Freelancing is an ideal starting point for a career in either direction, as it is both accessible and highly motivating. Consequently, Voetstoots deals are not just a sales strategy, but also a means of creating job opportunities for our future graduates.
AM.CO.ZA is a conglomerate consisting of companies that specialise in Computer Numerical Control (CNC) and printing machines. The group is spearheaded by Advanced Machinery (Pty) Ltd., which was established in 2013 and boasts a sprawling 6000 sqm headquarters situated in Sunnyrock, a suburb of Germiston, in close proximity to the neighbouring areas of Bedfordview and Edenvale.