The MD of UK system builder YoYoTech – CK Kohli – says in this opinion piece that British system building will prosper as more firms turn away from Chinese production lines.
We’ve been operating for nearly 12 years and I’ve been doing PC building for 27 odd years now.
I don’t think we’ll have factory lines in the UK, but for me it’s going to be about niche products – I think that’s what Britain is good at. Especially now with the online marketplace, you need to have products delivered just in time. So even for the resellers, they don’t want to hold too much stock because technology is moving at such a pace the product may not sell that quickly. Something else may be announced [and the old stock can get redundant].
I’m working with some Chinese vendors now and I can see their headaches – the lead times for a reseller can be up to 16 weeks. And 16 weeks of forecasting is impossible.
Everything we build in the UK is custom-built, so we can adapt things or make changes very quickly. But if someone produces a desktop in China, they have got to have big numbers to begin with and the lead times are so long.
There will be major growth in the UK in the desktop market in the coming years. This is because not as many companies are producing them in the Far East because of the lead times. The Fujitsus and HPs will continue to do that, but behind that there is another market, a consumer market and a business market where they need up-to-date specifications. And they need them very quickly. This is something we can control within the UK. That is where we will see the growth – it will flourish in the local market initially then going onto other territories like Europe or anywhere else.
Chinese factories are so large, that first of all they need large orders, then they need time to build those orders, then there’s a transportation time. So all of that can mount up to 12 to 16 weeks. If you take Ebuyer.com where they’re shipping out boxes every day, how can they actually forecast what they will need in 16 weeks? So they have to buy their product from distribution and ask them what they have in stock, rather than saying this is what we want.
But for the local companies like us, people can come to us and ask if they need 960-based systems for example and need them in two, three or four weeks, and it’s very manageable. That’s where our growth is and where YoYoTech is totally homing into – the gaming market. We have a good name in the gaming industry and we try to manage that with local resellers to say: “There is a demand from your local suppliers, and even local universities, colleges, government bodies and everyone else – they require something up to date.”
You can quote them – and the deliveries will be prompt and up-to-date.