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Chinese May Put Me Out of Business

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posted on Jul, 23 2011 @ 10:53 PM
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Forgive me mods if this is not the right place. Please feel free to move.

I know better than to label an entire nation because of the actions of a few individuals, but I am in desperate need of advice. My wife and I have been working 100 hours a day trying to get a technology better introduced to the US that China has basically monopolized for decades. Called electroluminescent lighting (EL), it is beautiful and probably the most energy efficient lighting and ambient decoration in the world. The short story is that when it came down to pulling everything together, we made the decision to put all our apples, oranges, and money into the same basket. Not that we had much of a choice, we really didn't. So we not only spent all we had left in the savings account, but we borrowed money to contract a factory in China to produce some proprietary and original materials for us. After weeks and weeks of sweating, the shipment arrived only hours before we had to hit the road to the UFO Festival in Roswell where we hoped to sell enough to jump start the business.

The products we received were of such horrendous quality that less than 5% of over 1,100 total items were usable. If we had sold all of the 5%, we would have still lost three times our investment. Nothing was up to specs, not a single piece matched our designs as presented, none worked for more than a few minutes, and the only thing we could do was basically remake all of it using the components. Once completed, we now have a superior product, but the cost is so high we cannot possibly charge enough to recoup anything close to our investment. We are trying to put together a Clearance link (www.wyldlites.com...), but I cannot afford the e-commerce assistance I need to finish that.

So, we talked to the pre-paid legal folks who basically told us to get lost. We were forced to pay cash by Western Union, who was the only payer source the manufacturer would accept so there is no credit card assistance coming, and the factory refuses to respond in any way whatsoever.

Add to this the fact that the officials at the Roswell Festival misrepresented their efforts (we took lots of pictures to prove this assertion), lied to us, tried to blame us for their errors, and caused every vendor we visited with to lose money as well and the situation becomes almost unbearable. My wife has lapsed into such a deep depression she rarely leaves bed, much less the house. My 11 year old son continues his unconditional belief that we are perfect parents and is oblivious to the severity of the problem, but I am spiraling into a psychological abyss as well. If we had more options and chose the incorrect path, we could at least look back and say "What if?" If it had happened in the US, we would have considerably more legal recourse. The list of alternative outcomes may be endless, but we made the best decision we could at the time and honestly can't see anything we would change given the information we were working with.

Can anyone tell me if there is a legal course of action that we could explore that doesn't cost even more money we no longer have? Is anyone aware of process and procedure with the Chinese consulate's office? So far, they won't take or return calls. I thought China was interested in trade talks and trying to improve their long-term standing with foreign businesses. What we lost was thousands, not hundreds of thousands, so we cannot garner any support or interest in the Chinese government. I cannot get anyone to understand that regardless how little or how much the amount we lost totaled, it was more than MY FAMILY could afford. If we were General Motors or someone with that type of portfolio, I am certain they would be at our door immediately.

Finally, it would be a terrible shame if we were denied the opportunity to produce this beautiful, incredibly energy efficient product because of circumstances so far removed from our ability to address. We very sincerely were and are proud to have perfected a means improving EL enough to be successful in the US, but do we really have to go down in flames instead? I am dedicated to my family, but moral and honest which actually is only another weapon to be used against us. I will not and cannot cross ethical lines, so constructive input and advice is needed and would be greatly appreciated.

Meanwhile, be careful what you buy from China, do not introduce new, energy saving ideas, and consider strongly whether or not you should support the greediness in Roswell Thank you for your time.



posted on Jul, 23 2011 @ 11:02 PM
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You said "if it happened in the US".

Where are you? This would help be able to possibly answer your questions a little better.
edit on 23-7-2011 by geraldcole because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 23 2011 @ 11:06 PM
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I thought China was interested in trade talks and trying to improve their long-term standing with foreign businesses.


They are, just not with a single small business. I am not trying to be rude, but, you mean nothing to them.



What we lost was thousands, not hundreds of thousands, so we cannot garner any support or interest in the Chinese government.


You answered your own question. I know you have heard/thought of this before but, you really should have talked to a liar....sorry, lawyer first. It would have cost a bit, but, it would have saved you from this nightmare you are now in. I suggest you talk with import/export lawyers and see if they would take a case to get your money back for either a % of what you will be suing these people for, or a % of your business. Either that or you cut your losses and move on.



posted on Jul, 23 2011 @ 11:13 PM
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reply to post by geraldcole
 


We live in the great state of Texas. Fort Worth, to be exact.



posted on Jul, 23 2011 @ 11:15 PM
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reply to post by superman2012
 


You are correct. If I can find an attorney willing to accept a contingency fee, I sincerely believe it will be one of his/her easiest cases ever. I document everything and I must have over 50 communications clearly laying out our needs in advance. Thank you for the input.



posted on Jul, 23 2011 @ 11:21 PM
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Western union ONLY!
You've been scammed.
This can happen to anyone.

Hopefully someone will offer some useful advice for you and yours.

I'm a manufacturer and I deal with well established manufacturers every day. I wouldn't not part with my money to a company I didn't fully trust.

The thing for me, is that the company must be answerable to opinions in some ways. These people have been in business all their lives dealing with OS wholesalers etc. When they catch you, an unknown and small player they already know your limited to what you can do. They probably offloaded faulty goods to you.

I wouldn't have touched the merchandise. You want your money back.

.. if you transferred the money through traceable routes.

I lost money like this. If you don't have their bank account # you won't trace the money. They got me cold too. The guy heard my Australian accent and knew I would be inclined to trust him. He knew I couldn't him.

Nothing much I can add.



posted on Jul, 23 2011 @ 11:28 PM
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reply to post by bowtomonkey
 

Thanks for the time. They certainly did unload a bunch of faulty goods on me, but with a new face on it. I had original designs for almost everything, but that didn't prevent them from pawning off sub-standard internal components. Sorry about your experience. I will take from your comment that you survived, and somehow so will we and hopefully in the same home (if you understand what I mean). Best wishes.



posted on Jul, 23 2011 @ 11:34 PM
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Just curious was there an American manufacturer who could have filled the order for you?



posted on Jul, 23 2011 @ 11:35 PM
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I am not versed in legal matters, but I am a web developer and can tell you, you need help with your website. E-commerce does not have to cost a ton of money. You can accept paypal and incur only paypal fees. While I can do the coding behind the scenes I am not a web designer or what can also be considered a graphic designer.



posted on Jul, 23 2011 @ 11:38 PM
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reply to post by samstone11
 


OMG, I wish you would have asked someone if that was a good idea here. This is what China does. Now they will steal your idea, copy it and mass produce it on a global scale. Even if they make half work they will profit and leave you and your family homeless.

Lesson learned NEVER DEAL WITH CHINA!!!!!

Invest in your own country even if it may be more to make in the U.S., you put a made in the U.S.A label on it and it will sell. People do not want their junk anymore. They are ruining this country with the help of greedy people here too but don't listen to anyone promoting China because its a glass house that will fall harder than most.



posted on Jul, 23 2011 @ 11:41 PM
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Originally posted by samstone11
We are trying to put together a Clearance link (www.wyldlites.com...), but I cannot afford the e-commerce assistance I need to finish that.


If you need help with this, setting up an ecommerce website I can do it for free



posted on Jul, 23 2011 @ 11:41 PM
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Originally posted by samstone11
reply to post by superman2012
 


You are correct. If I can find an attorney willing to accept a contingency fee, I sincerely believe it will be one of his/her easiest cases ever. I document everything and I must have over 50 communications clearly laying out our needs in advance. Thank you for the input.


Yeah but nothing will be easy dealing with the Chinese government first. They protect these clowns because thats how they make their money.



posted on Jul, 23 2011 @ 11:47 PM
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reply to post by samstone11
 

Check your messages U2U sent.



posted on Jul, 24 2011 @ 12:38 AM
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reply to post by samstone11
 


Sorry to hear of your business and family troubles, I hope you can resolve these obstacles quickly. Regarding these matters, I have 3 bits of wisdom to share that I hope will be of some help.

First, I never forget that my family always comes first! All the money in the world can never restore the health and love of your family once they are lost. To the greatest extent possible, always try to insulate your family from business troubles.

Second, find out who else is a major customer of the Chinese company delivering poor quality. Contact the purchasing department at these other purchasers, explain your situation, ask for their contact names in China, and ask if they can help you resolve your issues with this supplier. Now, contact the offending Chinese company again and carefully drop the name and contact of this significant other customer while telling the folks in China a clear, simple, and reasonable solution to your problem. If this is only about a few thousand USD, they may decide it is best to make you happy than to risk upsetting a major customer relationship.

Finally, the cost of starting up an oversea manufacturing operation smaller than several million USD is too high and too risky to ever consider for a business start-up (unless you have personally done this several times already). Instead, if you truly have a great product, raise your prices and invest in partial automation manufacturing technology. Full automation is very expensive but 20% to 50% automated assembly will keep your costs low enough to expand your markets and allow you to maintain control of your technology and quality. Regarding costs, also consider small market USA suppliers for some of your components. I have personally used small, ISO9000 certified, sub-assembly suppliers in Nebraska and Montana that easily beat the prices of same quality Chinese manufacturers.

Good luck and best regards,
Z

edit on 7/24/2011 by DrZrD because: Corrected a few repeated and missing word errors



posted on Jul, 24 2011 @ 12:44 AM
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Originally posted by samstone11
reply to post by bowtomonkey
 

I will take from your comment that you survived, and somehow so will we and hopefully in the same home (if you understand what I mean). Best wishes.


Sure, but at the time I needed the money. I made it back fast - the upside of being a manufacturer. Then again those were wild and crazy times as I started a business whilst on a working holiday in Europe. That said, it's amazing how quickly I trust people again when I'm in my comfort zone.

It took me a while to grow a thicker skin... a long time, I'd say.



posted on Jul, 24 2011 @ 10:49 AM
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reply to post by samstone11
 


you deserved what you got. sad but true.

just like the corps that have gutted the USA, left millions bankrupt, jobless, and homeless on the continent our forefathers conquered.

1. you wanted to outsource the labor (your business expenses) and import the profits (use cheap foreign labor, which further twists the dagger in americas back) and sell it to americans at a mark up..

typical detestable mentality that has thoroughly ruined this country, shaft your 'neighbors' (american workers) in order to turn around and profit off of them..

lesson learned no?? don't contribute to corporate goals, and dont trust china
edit on 24-7-2011 by rebeldog because: spelling



posted on Jul, 25 2011 @ 01:04 PM
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reply to post by rebeldog
 

You thoroughly misunderstood the situation. If there was a manufacturer here that I could use or trust, I would have. In fact, that is exactly my goal to not import even the components and assemble from scratch here as a solid, reliable, always dependable US domestic product. This type of quality is all I have ever got from the Chinese and I agree it is time we take back some of our ingenuity and resources as well.



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