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Thread: Starting a - Digital Photo Express Shop

  1. #1

    Default Starting a - Digital Photo Express Shop

    Hi Fellow Cs'ers,

    Would like to seek your opinion and advise on how to open a Digital Photo express shop. Lets make this a discussion room for all those who have a similar ambition.

    At the moment, i am looking for sponsors / branding. So far i've approached a few major brand names such as below, if anybody have idea of other sponsors in mind, do add on:-

    Sponsorship
    1. Fujifilm (Waiting for response)
    2. Kodak (Waiting for response)
    3. Konica Minolta (Ceased sponsorship)
    4. Agfa Photo (Cannot find contacts)

    The 2nd thing is about cost. Any advise on the minilab printers / workstations, leasing of shop lot, misc cost. Advise to populate the list below is greatly appreciated:-

    Cost
    1. High capacity Printer (Approx 7k ???)
    2. PC's and Photoshop (Approx 10k)
    3. Renovation / Shelving (Approx 15k)
    4. Leasing (Maybe 12k 2+1mth)
    5. Copying Machine (Lease basis, cost ???)
    6. Other Equipments ???

    The type of service i plan to provide

    Services
    1. Digital Photo Printing (All Sizes)
    2. Portrait Photo Services (Passport / IC / Etc)
    3. Photocopying
    4. Creative photobooks (Story book / calendars etc etc)
    5. Use my shop to advertise works of event photographers and i take a small cut

    Well, thats all i have in mind at the moment. Really, any advise is a good advise. Thanks.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Starting a - Digital Photo Express Shop

    I don't understand what u mean by sponsorship from companies like kodak and fujifilm. Are you seeking for free paper from them so that you could run your lab printing biz?

    Renting a shop space will depend on the location. Where do u have in mind? A hdb shop space can go anywhere from 2 - 5k per month depending on size and location. I'm not surprised some places can go even higher.

    From what I know, a digital printing machine can cost anywhere from 250K to 500K. You can work out a lease payment scheme with them. Not to mention there are also maintenance costs involved.

    As for the copying machine, I used to be in this line some years ago. It can price between 3 or 4k for a small machine and up to or more than 20k for those work horse types. That again depends on the brand and the optional features that come with it.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Starting a - Digital Photo Express Shop

    ya the noritsu lab machines (for kodak) cost at least 200k. Then factor in cost like their ct2 machines for customers to select photos from. What do you mean by sponsorship? Kodak does sponsor renovation sometimes to what i know, but things like paper and chemicals are chargeble.
    Chanxj
    my blog @ http://sgsnap.com

  4. #4

    Default Re: Starting a - Digital Photo Express Shop

    Quote Originally Posted by snowspeeder View Post
    I don't understand what u mean by sponsorship from companies like kodak and fujifilm. Are you seeking for free paper from them so that you could run your lab printing biz?

    Renting a shop space will depend on the location. Where do u have in mind? A hdb shop space can go anywhere from 2 - 5k per month depending on size and location. I'm not surprised some places can go even higher.

    From what I know, a digital printing machine can cost anywhere from 250K to 500K. You can work out a lease payment scheme with them. Not to mention there are also maintenance costs involved.

    As for the copying machine, I used to be in this line some years ago. It can price between 3 or 4k for a small machine and up to or more than 20k for those work horse types. That again depends on the brand and the optional features that come with it.

    Hi snow, well what i gather is, their sponsorship will be on the shop decorations, banner, digital media kiosk up to a certain extent. of course, you'll have to sign a contract with them and also to purchase inks and paper from em.

    As far as printer is concern, i am not sure yet, i mean do we really need to go all out and get those minilabs like the Frontier 3xx or Noritsu printers. those can go like up to 600 4r's an hr. seriously i dun think my business will be tat good though

    well hopefully they are able to provide leasing service, like the photocopying machines. you just lease them on a monthly basis.

    btw snow, how much issit to lease a copier machine / month. Thanks for ur inputs.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Starting a - Digital Photo Express Shop

    I would try and think of a unique angle or service which isn't already provided by the hundred of labs out there, not to mention the thousands around the world which are now accesible thanks to the internet.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Starting a - Digital Photo Express Shop

    do you mean a franchise, not a sponsorship? was always under the impression the whole deluge of kodak labs was under a franchise sort of thing.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Starting a - Digital Photo Express Shop

    Quote Originally Posted by cflee View Post
    do you mean a franchise, not a sponsorship? was always under the impression the whole deluge of kodak labs was under a franchise sort of thing.
    hi cflee, i think its a franchise. But they do provide sponsorship up to a certain extent, like decorations, reno and stuffs like dat.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Starting a - Digital Photo Express Shop

    Quote Originally Posted by ckuang View Post
    I would try and think of a unique angle or service which isn't already provided by the hundred of labs out there, not to mention the thousands around the world which are now accesible thanks to the internet.
    That's right. It's just like opening another chicken rice stall that taste just like any other chick rice stall. IMO, that's like the beginning of the end of a business.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Starting a - Digital Photo Express Shop

    Quote Originally Posted by sherman1979 View Post
    As far as printer is concern, i am not sure yet, i mean do we really need to go all out and get those minilabs like the Frontier 3xx or Noritsu printers. those can go like up to 600 4r's an hr. seriously i dun think my business will be tat good though

    well hopefully they are able to provide leasing service, like the photocopying machines. you just lease them on a monthly basis.

    btw snow, how much issit to lease a copier machine / month. Thanks for ur inputs.
    Those expensive high end printing machines are there for a reason. Not just becos of its capacity of output, but the quality is also different from inkjet-based printers. You can acquire these machines via leasing, which translates to high monthly payments (with interest) which will adds to the operating costs along with other factors like utility bills, rent, etc.

    But bear in mind that these lab machines do not automatically create fantastic photo prints. Which explains why most of the labs out there are not able to give excellent prints. Only those lab operators with an flair for color and details, are able to manipulate the settings and controls of the machine to churn out beautiful prints.

    For the copier machines, you can take a lease of 3 to 5 years. Depending on the price of the machines, the monthly lease can work out to be from a few hundreds to a few thousands.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Starting a - Digital Photo Express Shop

    Quote Originally Posted by snowspeeder View Post
    That's right. It's just like opening another chicken rice stall that taste just like any other chick rice stall. IMO, that's like the beginning of the end of a business.
    Yah true, if you sell chicken rice that taste the same as any other stalls, of course that's the start of a costly ending. But nevertheless, the most important thing is the spirit of daring to "start".

    To me, honestly i am earning a decent living as an engineer but deep down inside there's this entreprenuership spirit inside me tat has this urge to just take up the challenge and well, just sell chicken rice hehe

    But once you've started, then you can haf the chance to move on to the next level and start looking at things from a different angle to spice ur ofcourse "your chicken rice"

  11. #11

    Default Re: Starting a - Digital Photo Express Shop

    Hi Folks, another update on my journey

    Suprisingly there are lots and lots of refurbished printers that can be found abundantly on the web. My studies on various forums seem to point that the color reproduction on the FUji Frontier printers are excellent. There are a few being quoted to me like the Frontier 350 going for US30K and the newer Frontier 330 going for US35K. These machines are approx 5 yrs old, and haf printer count of maybe 0.8m to 1m.

    Also, since the location i m looking at already have various KM & Kodak outlet, this left me with an easier choice to select Fuji FDI as my sponsor. Will be meeting with a sales rep soon.

    If any1 knows of any1 who plans to share my ambition, we can even share the printer cost, of course i dun mind if the printer is located in your or my location.

    Cheers!

  12. #12
    Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Singapore
    Posts
    810

    Default Re: Starting a - Digital Photo Express Shop

    Good luck in your venture. I only hope you have done your maths and have got some professional help looking over your figures. FYI, many labs in SG have closed down and many more are on the verge of doing so. Its a sunset industry, at this point in time. Spend more time on doing your market surveys and costings before committing any money on your venture.

  13. #13

    Default Re: Starting a - Digital Photo Express Shop

    Fuji are more lax then kodak interms of deco and selling of items etc.

    But dun open printing labs, now it's like earning in cts only.
    Eat breath LIVERPOOL!!!

  14. #14

    Default Re: Starting a - Digital Photo Express Shop

    Good luck in your journey. But please please factor in cost like maintainance. Some machines need to change their rollers aft certain time, while some may need to be cleaned by the service guy aft x time so rmb to factor these cost in.
    Chanxj
    my blog @ http://sgsnap.com

  15. #15

    Default Re: Starting a - Digital Photo Express Shop

    Best is to speak to a friend who runs a lab and he will tell you the real life challenges of operating a lab and all the maintenance time consuming issues that has to be factored into the complicated running costs.

    From there, you will have a rough idea as to kind of money your new lab has to earn consistently just in order to be profitable in the long run.

    But if you do have a good strategic plan, I'll be delighted to buy you coffee and we can brainstorm over caffeine.

  16. #16

    Smile Re: Starting a - Digital Photo Express Shop

    new player like harvey norman has started providing digital printing services at its stores. currently, 19 cts per 4r.

  17. #17

    Default Re: Starting a - Digital Photo Express Shop

    Quote Originally Posted by reachme2003 View Post
    new player like harvey norman has started providing digital printing services at its stores. currently, 19 cts per 4r.
    Are those instant DIY print machines? If so, these machines can be purchased new between 5 - 8K these days. Some shops are charging 40 to 50 cents and pple still pay. Then again, these machines are ink-jet based. Quality is quite different from the lab printers.

  18. #18

    Smile Re: Starting a - Digital Photo Express Shop

    not completely diy. one download files(self-service). then, printing done by their staff with their machine/s.

    Quote Originally Posted by snowspeeder View Post
    Are those instant DIY print machines? If so, these machines can be purchased new between 5 - 8K these days. Some shops are charging 40 to 50 cents and pple still pay. Then again, these machines are ink-jet based. Quality is quite different from the lab printers.

  19. #19

    Default Re: Starting a - Digital Photo Express Shop

    Quote Originally Posted by reachme2003 View Post
    not completely diy. one download files(self-service). then, printing done by their staff with their machine/s.
    oic. They most likely outsource the service to some labs offering low cost printing in bulk, while HV gets a small cut over it.

  20. #20

    Default Re: Starting a - Digital Photo Express Shop

    Quote Originally Posted by snowspeeder View Post
    oic. They most likely outsource the service to some labs offering low cost printing in bulk, while HV gets a small cut over it.
    HV staff have no control on the photos. They are there just to click to print orders which customer has made payment at the cashier.

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