It's that time of year again - last minute Christmas shopping, scouring the supermarkets for the best turkey and trying to plan how you'll fit 14 family members around a 6-person table on the big day.
While I've got all of this to come (I'm a Christmas Eve shopper, but try and add some sense to proceedings by using a notepad list I've built up over a few months with gift ideas when shopping - no last-minute dashes because I've forgotten someone), at the moment my focus is on creating a list of things we've done well at DMGRS in 2014, and a list of things we'd like to achieve in 2015.
As many of my customers I've met through the various forums and owner's clubs will know, I originally started DMGRS as a part-time business to streamline the sale of L Series Cambelt Kits, Oil Cooler Pipes and the Heater Resistor Packs for the 25/45/ZR/ZS via a sales platform that would keep a track of orders and allow me to process them when I arrive home from the 'day job'. The shop you're viewing now was opened on the 23rd April 2013.
By the start of 2014 I'd already left my regular employment and we had over 100 products available - with an average of 6 being added every week. On average we'd take around 6 orders per day in January 2014 - now we tend to deal with between 18 and 25 on a given day. Plenty to keep us busy!
2014 - The high points
If we had to pick 5 achievements in 2014 we're most proud of, it'd be (in no particular order):
- Sourcing and having a large batch of 75/ZT Rear Upper Arms manufactured and stocked, and using a Group Buy to finance the initial production run
- Securing a deal with a major MG parts dealer in China, allowing us to stock many of the Roewe 750 / MG7 parts
- Securing several contracts with courier companies, allowing us to keep shipping costs low and shipping times brisk by having a selection of couriers available
- Starting our contract with First Line for the supply of their suspension components, and Borg & Beck brakes and clutches
- Finally, meeting a lot of our customers at various MG Rover shows and events - and hopefully a lot more to be met in 2015.
So, what are our plans for 2015?
2015 will bring some rather large changes - we'll be updating the Shop Theme to something a little more modern, and also stocking a lot more 'No Longer Available' parts we've sourced from MG.
Production of the MG7 has now ended, so we're expecting a lot of end-of-line parts to become available left over from production - we'll bring as many to the UK as possible to keep our cars on the road.
The future beyond 2015...
As time goes on, it's no secret that parts for our MG Rover vehicles are going to become a little harder to find - we've got an ever-growing list of items that will put our cars 'in danger' if they're no longer available or disproportionately expensive to purchase.
We'll keep growing this list, and stocking items from it - we work with several engineering companies that can create identical copies of a part if needed, and several plastic moulding companies that will be able to produce items of trim, clips and other small parts. In addition to this, we're also dealing with several part manufacturers in China for the reproduction of some already 'No Longer Available' parts.
Our long-term plan is to carry on as we are for the next few years, but towards the end of this period we'll find that more parts will need to be 'custom sourced' rather than being available off-the-shelf from a variety of suppliers. In these cases, we'll have the parts created for us, and sold under our own brand name.
We aim to service the MG Rover parts market for at least another 10 years, so there's no need to worry about the availability of parts - even far into the future.
Finally, a big thank you to all of our customers - both new and regular. We hope to deal with you for many years to come.
Remember - Above all, it's a Rover!