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How I Figured Out Manufacturing

Like to most other people, starting a company was an extremely scary idea, and the scariest part was how we would create a product when none of us had any experience with engineering. My group and I decided that I would find and talk to a manufacturer so we could get input on creating a prototype. Of course, talking to a big Chinese factory is a scary task, and I didn’t even know how I would ever find one. Fortunately, I found a website, made-in-china.com, which actually listed manufacturers and their contact info. I search for phone case makers I messaged a dozen. Their representatives’ English was shabby at best, but I made do with Google translate. Pretty soon, I found one to whom I described what we wanted. After asking some question, he was able to make a computer generated image of exactly what I was looking for. He quoted us ridiculously low prices, $1.80-2.30 per case that we could sell for well over $30. I had learned that manufacturers have a MOQ, or minimum order quantity, which is offsetting because you’re ordering many cases before you know you can sell them. However, because the margins looked so good and I was able to negotiate with my manufacturer to include different color cases in the MOQ, I felt confident that even if we couldn’t sell all the cases we ordered, we could still turns profit. And just like that, in 45 minutes, I had taken care of the part of the company-starting process which had scared me the most.

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