The plan, the aeroplane and the missing 2

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This is going to be recorded down as one of those failed investment.

**Warning: This is a very long posting**

The plan
Few weeks ago, T forward me a link to our company’s intranet page. Its a laptop promotion for staff. Acer, Lenovo and Apple. What caught my attention was the Macbook.

1.83Ghz Intel Core 2 Duo Macbook selling at $1565. Wah. That is quite a good deal. Was tempted to buy one for myself, but had to remind myself that the current 13″ Macbook is too heavy for my liking.

Then I got an idea. Why not I buy the Macbook, and try to sell it in the internet for a small profit. Surely it should be able to fetch a selling price of at least $1700 since the retail price is $1889.

If I couldn’t find a buyer at $1700, at least I should be able to get $1600. Worst come to worst, I’ll sell it at $1500 at a slight loss. If you want to make a profit, you must be prepared to make a loss first. I’m ready to take the risk.

I started posting ads on HWZ and SPUG. At first I quoted $1750, knowing people will surely bargain their way. But what I wasn’t prepared was the bargaining power of people from HWZ. I got people who quoted me as low as $1000 for a brand new, unopen 1.83Ghz Intel Core 2 Duo Macbook!!! Crazy. I didn’t even bother to reply that guy.

Things wasn’t as smooth sailing as I expected. I thought people will fly to grab that brand new Macbook as its almost $200 cheaper than the original retail price. I was wrong. It seems that the Macbook doesn’t have much resale value. I thought I’m going to make a loss.

Then someone came to me and offered to buy at $1650. Great. Sure… no problem. I told him that I haven’t recieved the Macbook yet and will be getting it on Wednesday. He said ok. So we waited a few days.

When the Macbook was about to arrive, I tried contacting the buyer.

The aeroplane
Firstly, the buyer ask me if he could deal at the end of the month when he gets his pay. I was reluctant but still agreed since his price was the highest. A short wait should be worth the money. Then he told me he saw a lower end model which is more suitable for his budget as he is a student. I was pissed off.

If you can’t afford the item, then don’t bid for it in the first place. You bid a high price and got the deal, only to back out because it is out of your budget. Great. I know, he didn’t do anything wrong as there wasn’t any written agreement. But I’m just pissed off by such behavior.

The aeroplane flew by….

So I contacted the next highest bidder at $1600. He said he could only meet during the weekend. Fine with me…. at least he didn’t back out or anything.

The missing 2
The Macbook arrive late due to some delivery cockups. It is supposed to be delivered to my office in the morning, but they forgotten about the delivery date and delivered to me in the afternoon. As I was in a meeting, I didn’t check the goods and trust that everything should be in place.

It was only later at night when I’ve settled my work stuff that I managed to check the Macbook. That is when the shocker came.

Its a 1.83Ghz Intel Core Duo Macbook. Not a Core 2 Duo!!!

Did they delivered the wrong Macbook to me? Core Duo and Core 2 Duo are 2 very different thing. Core Duo is surely not worth the $1565 that I paid for it. So I email to the admin incharge of the staff sales.

It turns out that there was a typo error in the Intranet page. It is suppose to be a Core Duo and not a Core 2 Duo. Left with no choice, I asked for a full refund.

1 big wasted effort. Wasn’t even able to make that mere $35 profit.

Lesson learnt
It is not so easy making profits by such buy and sell.
Be prepared to make less profit or even losses.
Pay attention to details.

Hmmm…. pay attention to details…..

Those who knows me well should know that paying attention to small details is not my forte. I’m well known to be careless. Yet I don’t know why I managed to notice that small details this time.

I’m glad that I notice it. And I must remind myself to always pay attention to the small details in the future. FYI, I’m not the only staff in my company who bought the Macbook. But it appears that I’m the only person who notice the error.

Am I going to continue doing this buy and sell thing?

Acutally, I had a small discussion last month with a friend of mine regarding doing a buy and sell business together. Our intention was to buy in expensive toys from USA to sell in Singapore thru blogs.

That is one of the reason why I bought the Macbook to sell. So that I can experience the process and see if it is feasiable. But this Macbook deal turns out to be a failed one.

So am I still going to go ahead with the plans? I’m having second thoughts now. Pehaps I’ll still continue, but with proper planning first. We’ll see…..

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