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Need advice on buying a taxidermy business

Discussion in 'The Taxidermy Industry' started by jweav, Apr 18, 2013.

  1. jweav

    jweav New Member

    Hello all. this is my first post i need some advice. i have been doing some taxidermy on the side for about a year now and am getting the opportunity to buy an established shop in my area and he would help me get started for first few month .should i go for it or would i be better off to just hold off and just do it parttime until i have enough work to go fulltime?
  2. Dont waste your money,you cannot buy his clients. You will have to develop a clientele, his clients may or may not stay and when they find out he has sold, they may come and pick up thier skins and antlers.

    How you been to the World Taxidermy Championships? If not go to the show in three weeks and see what you need to know before buying someone elses business.

  3. jweav

    jweav New Member

    okay thanx
  4. gab

    gab Active Member

    I have actually been through that scenario.you would be better off starting your own business from scratch.
  5. Kyle Lakey

    Kyle Lakey Active Member

    Wait a minute. Are you trying to buy the whole thing and just take over or buy the equipment and space and start a new buisiness of your own.

    There are alot of factors. It not like you are going down the street to buy a harware store. So how good of work are you doing now, how good is his work and equipment, how much is he wanting for it and is it affordable enough you can pay for it even if you start out slow and basically part time until you build your buisiness up, what are your plans for it, can you make it there doing it only part time instead, how much do you know about buisiness and what it takes to make money at it, ect lots of questions to considered before everyone jumps on the no or yes train. You have to think about these things for yourself and figure out if its a cheap enough opportunity that you have some leeway and if this guy is going to teach what you need and you have the skills already to be able to survive as a buisiness in taxidermy. Yes most people start off building their buisiness from scratch but thats not always the case given the right opportunity. We don't know anything about you or your situation with this potential deal so you have to figure all these questions out for yourself and crunch some numbers as well. Only you can do that.
  6. socalmountainman

    socalmountainman Northwestern School of Taxidermy - Class of '73

    ...all we know about you is that you are 21. If you were my son I would be telling you to buy a house with that money. By the time you are 48 the house is paid off, your taxidermy business is doing well working out of your own basement or garage and, you never have to pay rent to anyone ever again!
  7. jweav

    jweav New Member

    I would be buying all his equipment his shop is 16 by 40 and i would move it to my place. He has work backed up till november right now and he would stay and help me up until all that is done. As far as running business goes i have no experience . am 21 i have a job right now where i bring in 400 a week. I would have to go in debt about 80k to do this. his shop brings in bout forty k a year.
  8. huntin_justin

    huntin_justin Active Member

    his shop brings in bout forty k a year! what will yours bring in. and how are you moving his shop to your place? I am guessing he does not have a building for sale. So what are you buying off him for 80K. I hope not all his showroom mounts. Wouldnt you rather have your mounts in your showroom? Like said above, customers could come pick up thier stuff. Alot of people are scared of change. Do you think you are going to generate enough business to pay your loans right away? If you have been doing taxidermy for a year, do you have customers that will continue to come back? Do you already have the supplies you need to keep doing it the way you are for now? What kind of work are you putting out now. I would seriously think about all this before jumping in.
  9. mimes

    mimes Member

    Is he grossing 40K or netting 40K ........HUGE difference! I am part time, grossing 20K but netting .....not enough! LOL Sounds to me like 80K is too much for that small of a building and some equipment. Like others said, if your quality is not there, his customers are not going to stay with you. Just being honest, doing taxidermy on the side for only a year......I bet your quality is not quite where it needs to be yet to keep all of his customers. Offer to help him finish his inventory for free in exchange for free training. Buy yourself a nice building to put on your place and start building your client list.
  10. jweav

    jweav New Member

    he is netting 40 a yea but thanx for all the input! def gave me a lot think about !
  11. Galen

    Galen 218-263-7177 www.EdgewaterTaxidermy.com

    Your buying a lot of Blue Sky,,,

    Was he the only taxidermist in town? Do people have to drive 100 miles to get something mounted . Does your work look as good as his. You have no way of knowing if everyone that went to him will come to you .

    I would pay him for the building if you need it and supplies and for his time to help you get on your feet with that whatever you think that is worth.

    YOU are the MAIN factor here. Can you do the work . IF you can people will pay for it . Can you get the work done in the same time frame as the other guy . lots of things to think about.

    If everything adds up to let’s say 20 grand , Building supplies and all that ,, are you worth the 60 grand so you can make 40 a year to get paid back ??

    That 40 K a year ,,,, ==== Is the 40 K what he makes after ALL Bills are paid ??

    Galen Getting
    218-263-7177 Central Time
  12. smittys llc

    smittys llc New Member

    Buying a established business is a good Idea.You will be much further ahead they trying to start out fresh.A few factors may come into play......
  13. critterstuffr

    critterstuffr New Member

    One important thing to remember is to go full time you have to be in most cases a very well rounded taxidermist. Meaning game heads, fish, birds, mammals. Some can and do find a one or two species niche and do rather well but most are of the other kind and few are good at it all . . . very few. JMO. Good luck. :)
  14. boarhunter67

    boarhunter67 Well-Known Member

    Most of his prior clients will continue to call the same number or drive by the same place. You've already said the building will be moved. Will you keep the same phone number? It sounds like you are buying the building, taxidermy name (which is different from buying a business as it would be if you were buying a restaurant or hardware store), and tools.
    When I started, I built a shop in my back yard. It cost me about $8k and I put another $4K over the next few years on tools, freezers, etc. My shop is 15x30. I can't see paying $80k for what you are describing unless you are in the exact same location, with the same number, the $40k a year is after every other bill is paid, and you are experienced enough to handle the volume and keep the same quality he has built up. Even then, you'll lose some customers because many are loyal to him, not the business name. Having only a year of experience, I can tell you that I doubt you are skilled enough or fast enough to handle the volume yet. I might be wrong; only you would know that. I can tell you that after 3 years of working with an experience taxidermist in my area, he retired and I sort of took over. The last couple of years we handed out all my cards to his current clients. I started off very slow. I had three years of experience and thought I was pretty good. If I had the type of year back then that I had this year (and I'm still only part time) I wouldn't have been able to handle the pace because I'm so much quicker now. Also, as good as I thought I was back then my quality is so much better now that I'd be embarrassed to put out what I used to. I've raised my prices such to where my deer prices have gone from $350 to $600 in the last five years alone. If I were to sell my business to my skinner who has worked with me for a little over a year, the business wouldn't last. His mounts are passible, but only because I still tell him what to adjust and troubleshoot. I might be wrong. This is just my opinion. ALthough I'm probably one of the best in my town, I'm nowhere near the quality of many on here. Depending on where you are, you'll be competing with other taxidermists who are really talented.
    I would recommend buying tools, shop, and his time. You will learn more working with him than you will on his own--assuming he is good.
  15. Unless you are buying a "Name" Shop Jonas Bros used to be or A similar large shop where you get to keep the employes, clientele, location etc. I wouldn't. In my experience you will probably loose 50-60% or more of his clients. They are loyal to him and would rather get nothing done than send it to you. One man shops are just that "One Man" Not something that can be sold.. Yes you could buy all his equipment and his client list.. But honestly.. for $80K Its probably not worth it... 3-4 Months worth of Hands on training with the guy may be a good idea though and worth a portion of that.
  16. gab

    gab Active Member

    there is no such thing as blue sky in this business.don't do it!
  17. bowerbird

    bowerbird New Member

    Do the maths son
    40 K a year BROUGHT IN thats 800 a week, 160 bucks a day ( and thats if its a 5 day week) before tax and expenses.
    Maybe by the end of it a third is costs, say 13 grand, so your on 550 a week, say one hundred bucks a day, if you dont invest in expanding the shop
    Your job pays you 20 grand a year ,,400 a week clear we presume.
    Thats one head a week , and if you picked that up part time ,, your already in front
    If you had the financial backing, id rather pay more and buy something turning over a lot more, and merely transfer the ownership, keeping staff and good will.
    But that aint the case.
    Buy a house now whilst housing prices are down,,and learn to do pets,, and for those who just thought what are you talking about,,i make more for a tabby cat than i get for a mountain lion or bear mount,,,and it aint any different if your good at it.
    Most of them supply there own cushion for the base,,,,happy days
    good luck
  18. 10,000 would be way to much!!! YOu would also have to make sure he would not start a new business.

    No real estate??? 80 grand you would be just stupid to pay that. never for a one man portable shop!! here is not $20,000. in work and not even close to $6,000. in machinery and supplies.

    Back long of work to November??/ Number how much is the back long. Look at his books, how many mounts a week are going out and coming in.. 16X40 shop is not much space!!! No way is he sending out much work in that small of a space.