WHAT WE’VE BEEN WORKING ON
January 04, 2020
“Well, you're in your little room and you're working on something good;
But if it's really good, you're gonna need a bigger room.”
- The White Stripes (Little Room)
WHAT WE’VE BEEN WORKING ON
// A PEEK BEHIND THE CURTAIN
// with BILL MACKIN, CHIEF & CO-FOUNDER
About 18 months ago, we realised we were growing faster than we could keep up with. For most businesses, this is good problem to have, but for us it was creating a lot of problems, (upset customers). We put together a plan. It involved securing investment so we could make some big changes.
12 months later we’d secured 2 rounds of investment, (CROWDFUNDING SUCCESS) & (QUEENSLAND GOVERNMENT). Armed with new funds and a collection of passionate minority shareholders, we started to implement our plan. Rather than doing everything the same (only with larger volumes) we went back to the drawing board - we kept what we liked and we upgraded the rest. We now have a global network of manufacturing suppliers, (GLOBAL SUPPLY CHAIN). In addition to greater capacities, lowered costs and advanced manufacturing techniques, these changes also ensure we are no longer 100% reliant on any one supplier. Best of all, we now have 5 guaranteed ship dates per year.
// NOW SHIPPING 5+ TIMES PER YEAR
If you’ve been following Chief Products for more than a few months, you’ve probably noticed we’re often out of stock, (or when we get new stock, we often sell out in a few weeks). It feels great to have such enthusiastic customers - and to be experiencing such amazing growth - but at the same time, it has been extremely frustrating to realise we’re not meeting the needs of so many customers.
I’m happy to announce, in addition to greater capacities we also now have 5 guaranteed ship dates per year. We may add additional dates for special product releases, but these 5 dates are set in stone. It’s something we realised we had to do to properly coordinate all of our new suppliers. It provides everyone, (all of our suppliers, manufacturers, distributors, retailers and customers) with set dates they can count on.
There were some delays as we transitioned everyone to the new system, but we believe the long-term rewards are going to be well worth it. One of the immediate benefits, is our new STOCK AVAILABILITY web page. If you’re wondering when stock is arriving, just hit the links below!
SAME GREAT GEAR + NEW LOWER PRICING
// SINCE 2013, 95% OF OUR CUSTOMER REVIEWS HAVE BEEN 5 out of 5 STARS
To ensure we are delivering the same great quality, we worked closely with each new manufacturing supplier as they built prototypes for each of our products. It provided us with a great opportunity to update our QC processes, make improvements for volume production, as well as various other improvements that lowered costs and improved our overall manufacturing performance.
Increased volumes, dedicated ship dates and increased efficiencies has enabled us to lower our pricing.
In North America, we’ve provided new lower pricing for almost every product in our line-up.
In Australia, we’ve provided lower pricing for a handful of products. Most importantly these changes have allowed us to avoid large price increases due to increased materials costs, global trade wars and currency exchange rates that have been working against the Australian dollar.
// SMALLER + STRONGER + BETTER LOOKING
We re-designed our packaging! Each product now fits better on a pallet (for more efficient shipping to our warehouses), they fit better on our warehouse shelves (for lower storage costs), they’re more durable when delivered to the customer (to ensure the product arrives undamaged) and they should look better when they arrive (with newly designed artwork).
// NOW OPEN + SHIPPING SOON
We're dropping new gear onto our warehouses all around the world. If you're dying to get your hands on some Chief Products gear for your machine, we encourage you to check out our latest.
WK2 ROOF RACK
// PINNACLE OF PERFORMANCE
Chief Products WK2 Roof Rack provides the pinnacle of performance for roof rack systems on the WK2 (Jeep Grand Cherokee, 2011-2020). It delivers industry leading load ratings (150kg dynamic & 600kg static) in a light weight, low profile design with unparalleled fit-and-finish. Best of all, the modular design delivers unprecedented configurability, allowing you to mix-and-match components to create the exact roof rack system you want.
// JANUARY 2020
—> STOCK STARTS ARRIVING
—> HELLHAWK - RELAUNCH
—> LAUNCHING IN MIDDLE EAST
—> WK2 FENDER FLARES (1ST PROTOTYPE ARRIVES)
—> WK2 OFF-ROAD FRONT BUMPER (1ST PROTOTYPE ARRIVES)
—> 5 NEW WK2 PRODUCTS DECLASSIFIED
—> JL WRANGLER PRODUCT LINE ANNOUNCED
—> T-SHIRTS GO TO PRINT
—> POSTERS GO TO PRINT
// CHASING THE HORIZON
We’re still chasing the horizon, but looking back after six years, there’s no doubt we’re a long way from where we started in our garage.
Thanks for rolling with us. It’s been an unbelievably incredible adventure so far. I hope you’ll join us, as we up shift and accelerate into… what is sure to be something exciting.