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I have a question for those who are actively engaged in buying (and selling) Lego as an investment.
Let's say you bought a given set x 20 waiting for it to become discontinued. A few years have gone by and current asking price is as high as it is likely to get (you reckon). You decide it's time to unload the 20 sets. How long does it take to do that? Can you count on finding enough buyers, no matter how many you need, to unload the stockpiled sets?
One nice thing about stocks is that when you decide it's time to sell, you can sell them instantly. Lego is not necessarily like that.
I wonder how long it would realistically take to dump 20 or 50 or 100 sets of a given type in a reasonable amount of time.
There are over two thousand market makers in the USA.
Regret missing out on the 8129. It's sadly the "one that got away"
That is the set that just won't die. :)
Is it the hoarders that are still making it a big seller?, considering it is relatively cheap and an exclusive do they think its maybe a safer bet than say the imperial shuttle or tower bridge?
As far as MMV being a better investment, the "problem" is that because it is less expensive to invest in, more people do so. Whereas many can't afford to stock up on $250 sets and hold them for a year or two or three. This is why the Republic Dropship was a "surprise" hit on the aftermarket. It didn't have as mass appeal and was pricey, so lots of potential resellers largely ignored it, or bought 1 or 2 or 3, not 10 or 20 or 30 as they would with MMV.
That said, MMV just has to rise in value $100 in the aftermarket for you to double your money. Imperial Shuttle has to go up $250 for you to double your money.
Jabba's Palace, 717 parts for $119 will look rather silly next to it.
LEGO overinflated SW set prices will always make sure of that.
One example is the Indiana Jones theme. Most of the sets available from IJ were only out about 1 year. Compare that to the PotC, which have had many sets out for almost 1 1/2 years and still going. Even sets from the Cars theme are on sale longer than IJ and other themes from a couple years ago, and I just can't believe Cars is that big a seller. I could also mention MMV and DS, but those may be special cases of hugely popular sets. There also seems to be more SW sets available than ever before as well...
I am wondering if I'm wrong on this, and if not, how this will impact the aftermarket in general?
I still find Space Police III sets on the shelf from time to time, those didn't sell either.
IJ was probably gone quickly because it is a popular theme. Rest assured, when MMV and DS go, they'll be gone very quickly. They are special cases, or at least DS is, I don't know why a CASTLE theme is still here, but whatever... :) If Joust retires before MMV does, then that must set some kind of record, MMV, a CASTLE theme would have outlived its replacement, KINGDOMS, and continued...
There seem to be a lot of one and done themes, Dino comes to mind, as does Monster Fighters....
On the other side, Ninjago has been a huge hit, and Friends is all new... Superheros has done very well...
Yea, there are a lot of sets out, tons of choice... I think buying them all is probably no longer realistic, when it might have been at one point.
EOL'ing is more about clearing one set, to make way for another set from the same range. Why EOL Cars when it doesn't have much impact on, for example, Ninjago. Whereas they will EOL a popular Ninjago set for another Ninjago set, to keep the line with a limited number of sets out at any one time.
Another thought is that the duration of licensed themes (Cars, IJ, PotC, LotR, etc.) are agreed to before hand, and who knows what's in those contracts. Perhaps Cars was a two-year agreement and TLG has to produce those products per the agreement. I would love to see the legalese of a typical licensed agreement with TLG.
There are multiple ways to pay for shelf space, one way is via sell-through, another way is by selling the shelf space outright. There is a reason Frito-Lay owns 75% of the chip isle in Walmart and most grocery stores, they buy it... That is one reason why the Frito-Lay guy comes in and stocks those shelves (not the only reason, but one of them).
Ditto with breakfast cereal, soda, crackers, etc...
If TLG wants Friends in the girl isle, they can work that into their deal with TRU, Walmart, etc. If they want 3 months of endcap space, that is worked into the deal as well (what, you thought endcaps were FREE?!?) :)
I don't know if TLG must produce a certain number of sets, but I'm sure they have a minimum per set license fee, so they might as well make them. Some will be a hit, others won't, but you roll your dice and take your chances.
Keep in mind that Cars is really Disney, which is also PotC, Disney Princess, Toy Story, etc. So it probably is a multi-property licence with all kinds of terms and options. Some lawyers probably got paid good money to write it. ;)
While we are still talking about MMV...Is Lego going to release another castle theme set at the end of the year like they did with Kingdoms Joust? I'm surprised Mill Village Raid hasn't done well in the after market. I thought it was one of the better sets released other than KJ. It is the only set that has goats and the white chicken.
So Walmart really does pay 70% of RRP for the sets, just like I would. But then TLG turns around and buys shelf space, end cap space, floor advertising, newspaper circular advertising. You know those things you get in your mailbox from the local paper that have a Walmart insert, guess what? Walmart doesn't pay for those, the companies with products inside them do.
That is how Walmart and TRU and Target really gets the sets for 50% off RRP (more or less).
Which makes it all the more remarkable that TLG is making a profit, given that for the average $100 set, they really get about $50 of that. For that $50, they have to design it, produce it, print the box and instructions, box it all up, and ship it half way around the world.