I was in Nottingham yesterday to check out the Foundry Shop for Blog-Con (more on that when I can download the pictures). But on Friday I found out that ModelZone had gone into liquidation and are selling off the stock. Further more Vallejo paints had 50% knocked off the price. Now it's almost a month since receivers were sent in and I did not expect much to be left. As such I was pleasantly surprised to see the paint racks still reasonably stocked.
I came away with ten paints, I could have gone more but all the colours I would have added were probably going to be seldom used. That being said I will still buy some more next time I go if they have any left. At the moment most items are only 20% reduced, but experience says that if you time it right then many a bargain can be had. At the moment though 50% off paints, sprays and modelling tools is a great incentive. The Woodland Scenic's is still just 20% so I hope to pick up some of this once the price drops.
ModelZone blame poor choices in leases and internet competition as being he main reasons for closing down. The Internet is an old chestnut and one I have some sympathy over but many a brick and mortar shop had lower prices than ModelZone but the Internet could really trash them on plastic kits.
Poor decisions over leases though is really bad, this is a time that many shopping centres and outlets are prepared to give long periods of free rent or turnover only based rents, basicly offer almost free (and in cases free) rent just so they do not have as many voids and someone else pays the rates. About four years ago Business rates was changed so that full rates are levied on empty shops which the landlord would be liable for, this made a good number of units suddenly become cheap whilst units in area's with no retail growth become a lead weight around the owners neck! Rather than stimulate retail it actually chocked the long standing profitable retailers as fly by nights came in with little or no rent and sashed prices in many cases sending the established retailer who was tied into a high rent into none profit. Anyway I digress, what ModelZone's owners really meant was that they tried the old tactic when confronted with shrinking sales and opened lots of units in a bid to push turnover up.And in doing so seems also was stupid enough to PAY rent at something like normal prices. Never did it cross their minds to cut prices or have special offers etc. to stimulate sales, instead they opted for high prices and watching their profit and loss sheet falter, no dobt throwing more money into yet more poorly conceived stores.
So it may still be worth nipping to your local ModelZone, bargains may await.