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Competing with AMA

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Old 05-22-2007, 08:02 AM
  #1  
ferocious
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Default Competing with AMA

I just saw on page 12 of the May issue of MA that I now have to compete in the foam wing business against the largest modelling organization in the world, and I practically have to be a member.

I've been cutting foam wings with CNC equipment, both custom and for our own kits, for 25 years. I really don't see how AMA, as a non-profit organization, can justify starting businesses that compete with their members own. Why not start building radios, hmmm??? The AMA is supposed to be a non-profit, educational organization. Cutting foam wings for sale just doesn't fit in with that. Selling trophies is a bit different, since nicely done aero trophies are hard to find almost everywhere. But even there, they are competing with several member run trophy houses that specialize in model aviation.
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Old 05-22-2007, 08:26 AM
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Default RE: Competing with AMA


ORIGINAL: ferocious

I just saw on page 12 of the May issue of MA that I now have to compete in the foam wing business against the largest modelling organization in the world, and I practically have to be a member.

I've been cutting foam wings with CNC equipment, both custom and for our own kits, for 25 years. I really don't see how AMA, as a non-profit organization, can justify starting businesses that compete with their members own. Why not start building radios, hmmm??? The AMA is supposed to be a non-profit, educational organization. Cutting foam wings for sale just doesn't fit in with that. Selling trophies is a bit different, since nicely done aero trophies are hard to find almost everywhere. But even there, they are competing with several member run trophy houses that specialize in model aviation.

This is outrageous. With all the things AMA needs to be doing this not one of them.
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Old 05-22-2007, 11:10 AM
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Default RE: Competing with AMA

The current leadership is not interested in the actual mission of the AMA. It is profit oriented. With a declining membership, instead of cutting costs, they are looking for ways to increase income.
This is basically the same beef I have with them over the ad prices in MA. They will try to use leverage to put you out of business and take your market from you. I am sorry to see this happen.
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Old 05-22-2007, 12:09 PM
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Default RE: Competing with AMA

As someone who is in the industry as well, I was very surprised to see this when I got the magazine. You reckon they are paying an employee to do this as part of his or her job description there at AMA? Or are they farming it out? I guess the next thing will be a line of Li-po batteries and brushless motors followed by a line of foamie arfs. []
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Old 05-22-2007, 12:12 PM
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Default RE: Competing with AMA

The pictures looks like it's in-house.
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Old 05-22-2007, 03:58 PM
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Default RE: Competing with AMA

Ummm... Though I agree that the AMA probably shouldn't be getting into this, I have to say that I see this as no different than the trophies. A trophy store would have the same ability to do what the AMA is doing in regards to trophys. The AMA does not make the trophy parts, another company that specializes in trophy toppers does. The AMA just puts them together.
I see this type of increasing income a relatively good idea.
\Look increasing income while reducing costs is smart business. This is the same reason that a local government has their own electric company.
Now having said this I agree that the AMA needs to work on reducing costs and focusing their efforts in other ways, but if this income stream helps this process(which remains to be seen) than fine with me. It's better than raising the dues. I see no real issue with additonal revenue streams
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Old 05-22-2007, 05:00 PM
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Default RE: Competing with AMA

No you wouldn't see any problem with it as long as it did not hit you in your pocket. I cannot say it any better than fercious, mike or jugflier.
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Old 05-22-2007, 05:04 PM
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Default RE: Competing with AMA

Not for nothing, but what's the difference between doing this and running ads in their magazine? You don't think they are pulling from the pockets of the other rags? If MA went down, those other publishers would be quite please with the new revs.
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Old 05-22-2007, 05:15 PM
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Default RE: Competing with AMA

ORIGINAL: ferocious

I just saw on page 12 of the May issue of MA that I now have to compete in the foam wing business against the largest modelling organization in the world, and I practically have to be a member.

I've been cutting foam wings with CNC equipment, both custom and for our own kits, for 25 years. I really don't see how AMA, as a non-profit organization, can justify starting businesses that compete with their members own. Why not start building radios, hmmm??? The AMA is supposed to be a non-profit, educational organization. Cutting foam wings for sale just doesn't fit in with that. Selling trophies is a bit different, since nicely done aero trophies are hard to find almost everywhere. But even there, they are competing with several member run trophy houses that specialize in model aviation.
Ferocious,
While I have not seen the ad, I would agree based on what little I know. The AMA should stick to insurance and advertising model airplanes, and not selling products. After all, aren't they a 501-C3 organization?


50%

p.s. do you have a website for your business?
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Old 05-22-2007, 05:19 PM
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Default RE: Competing with AMA

I agree, I think this is out of the AMA's realm of services it should be providing.
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Old 05-22-2007, 06:38 PM
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Default RE: Competing with AMA

You all act surprised? The AMA stopped being what it needs to be for some time. The membership lost control years ago and its going to take a mass exodus to bring them in line. It started with the Muncie site (spending our money without asking) to losing its ***** every month publishing that so called mag. The only thing there trying to promote is the bottom line. If they think cutting foam cores is the answer... they need to think again. But what the He$$ it anit there money.
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Old 05-22-2007, 07:25 PM
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Default RE: Competing with AMA

Thankyou for letting me know about this. I will take that in to consideration when and if I rejoin AMA.
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Old 05-22-2007, 07:53 PM
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Default RE: Competing with AMA

First and foremost, please do not think for a moment that I do not know about competition in the open market!!! I opwn a retail store and compete in retail against chain stores and the like, so before you make the assertion that the reason I do not see a problem with it is because it does not financially effect me think again!! Everytime someone goes to a Wal-Mart or big boxs store I feel it, and they do this to save a few dollars.
Second, if you cannot handle the competition than maybe the retail market is not for you. In business there is competition. I am sure that the AMA and you are not the only 2 dogs in the foam core yard, so please gimme a break!!
Third, the 501-C3 status has nothing to do with what they are doing, the money is still going to a non-profit organization. So lets drop that argument quick, because it is clear that if that is the argument, than it is lost before it has begun. You need to read what a 501-c3 can and cannot do before you throw that out there.
fourth, although I agree that they probably are delving into realms they ought not, if this revenue stream keeps dues stable and pays for more overhead, than great!! Stop complaining, if they did not try this first and just upped the dues you all would be screaming from the mountains.
Fifth, As I said before increasing revenue is only half the game, the AMA needs to cut costs as well. give them a chance. But for god sake stop the whining that they are financially effecting you. Anyone could potentially effect you financially!! This is called a FREE MARKET ECONOMY!!!
The AMA needs to fine tune the things they should be doing before getting into other avenues, no argument here, but if you have a problem with this, than why no problem with the banners trophies, t-shirt printing etc...... It's the same thing, you are not looking at this objectively.
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Old 05-22-2007, 09:04 PM
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Default RE: Competing with AMA

SSRCCprez, you overlook one serious problem. It look like AMA will be advertising their service in their magazine paid for by us the members FREE OF CHARGE. While ferocious will have to pay for the same advertising. Now AMA is not playing on the same field, advertising subsidized by you and me. That's not free market. That's called taking advantage of you and me. I don't want my dues paying for a business that another fellow modeler is capable of supplying without my subsidy.
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Old 05-22-2007, 10:24 PM
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Default RE: Competing with AMA

Im not a big fan of the AMA but I see nothing wrong with them providing a service
to its members while at the same time bringing in more income.
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Old 05-23-2007, 07:38 AM
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Default RE: Competing with AMA

Jug, the AMA loses money on MA every month as Hoss always let's us know. If the AMA does not increase evenue streams they will increase dues. As for your advertising,point, do you think I pay the same in advertising than does BesBuy,Saverite,Rite-aid,Staples, etc.? Do you thin I pay the same as them for the same products fromt he same manufacturer...NO, I don't. That IS a free market. Everyone has their own particular advantages. Your argument is that the ad space is free and Ferocious has to pay, therefore it's not fair........... I ask again what about the t-shirts, mugs, signs, trophies, plaques,plans printing, etc.? These are all advertised and are all found out in the open(free) market. There is NO difference.None whatsoever.
Again, I am thinking the AMA is swimming in the wrong pool, but I applaud the effort. Let's not be so quick to judge the AMA on EVERYTHING they do!!!
If you are so nhappy witht he foam cutting and other services, than by all means send them extra money for dues, because without the additional revenue streams they will have no choice but to increase the dues!! Be thankful they are using that as a las resort not a first!
HAving said this I again wills ay that YES they need to reduce costs as well, and Yes they probably need to focus on the things they are currently doing and work to do them betterbefore getting into other things, but to say they shouldn't do it because it efects other people in business is sily.
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Old 05-23-2007, 03:25 PM
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Default RE: Competing with AMA

How do we the members even know if the core cutting business is or will make money. Based on the AMA's track record I'm not convinced they know how.
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Old 05-23-2007, 03:38 PM
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Default RE: Competing with AMA

I agree I think it will be a money losing venture for them. I would rather see them only provide cores and parts for plans which they distribute. There is no real difference in that than what RCM used to do. My guess is that this is probably what the venture was originally intended for, and then it became one where anyone could send in something just to generate work.

Although I agree that I hate to see them do this, I will say that within this very forum we spent 8-10 pages discussing the fact that we wanted to see them do something to help support the magazine which is obviously losing money and coming out of the members' pockets. We cannot have it both ways. This is obviously something they probably did not think about to clearly. Ferocious, I would suggest you pick up the phone or email your District VP and let him know how you feel about this. It might have some impact.
Good luck
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Old 05-23-2007, 05:19 PM
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Default RE: Competing with AMA

Tommy!!! What would you have ferociouse say? Hey I have the foam core market cornered so get out? What about trophy makers, screen printers and plans services printers...Should they call too? How about Geico, should they call and tell the AMA to get out of the insurance business? Gimme a break..Ferociouse needs to be a business MAN and deal with the realities of competition. If his product and pricing is competitve or superior he will be fine, if not well than....too bad.
PLease spare me with this liberal crud...it's not fair waaaa waaaa waaaa. It's called competition its life!!! Anyone with a CNC machine is a potential competitor in this segment of the market. It just takes a good bank loan and some advertising.....GET a LOAN and get your name out there, but for god sake stop whining.
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Old 05-23-2007, 07:17 PM
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Default RE: Competing with AMA

I say If hes a AMA member than he can advertise his product at our expense. Fairs Fair ........ or is it?
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Old 05-23-2007, 07:59 PM
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Default RE: Competing with AMA

Does the NRA make and market guns? Does the EAA make and market experimental aircraft kits? I don't know, and knowing might help me put this in context. My drug plan insurance company pays for drugs they sell me. This has struck me as a possible conflict of interest on their part. However, they also pay for drugs I get elsewhere. so maybe not.
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Old 05-23-2007, 08:33 PM
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Default RE: Competing with AMA

ORIGINAL: Jim Thomerson
Does the EAA make and market experimental aircraft kits?
What they do sell a lot of is insurance and airplane loans for experimental and GA aircraft, which is unrelated business and they sell a whole bunch of it. This service is not part of membershp dues either, oh and they do a heck of a lot of advertising for the insurance and loans in their magazines. They also sell a bunch of aviaton subscription based magazines, 6 total, unrelated to the membership magazines. They know how important to get the word out in print. They also sell a bunch of training DVD's, books and other materials in a market which they know they can capture.

Funny thing is they sell more rubber kits them most hobby shops. Check out their whole store while your here: http://shop.eaa.org/html/04_model_kits.html?cart_id=
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Old 05-23-2007, 09:46 PM
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Default RE: Competing with AMA

Fair is fair? are you kidding? Lets take a step back here..The AMA is not the big Muncie evil. They MA mag is a REQUIREMENT for 501C3 status, why shouldnt they advertise in their OWN MAGAZINE to increase a revenue stream. Free advertising equals lower overhead which means greater profit, whichm eans NO DUES INCREASE!! Is it fair that Hannaford gets a better ad rate than me? Is it fair they can buy the same product cheaper than me? How about BJ's or Sam's club? Again I go back to the fact that the AMA offers print services, sign services, plan printing, t-shirts, trophies, plaques etc. Noone has complained when they advertise this in their mag for free, so why now and why this? Because a single member might be effected by it someday maybe? Furhter there would be no concrete way to prove if his business would be effected. This is obsurd!!! it's not fair? what are we 6 years old? C'mon.....we are better than this.
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Old 05-24-2007, 07:38 AM
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Default RE: Competing with AMA

Well, I can understand why people are upset. You can't fly a trophy or a plaque. They are competing directly with a member. It's tasteless. Before you ask, an exception is made for plans (in my mind anyway) because they aren't competing directly with anybody. Not even other magazines that offer plans. Each plan is unique.
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Old 05-24-2007, 08:13 AM
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So you mean to tell me that none of the members are printers,engtavers, screen printers, plans copiers,advertising agents, foam cutters,insurance agents, not to metion the 4 pages of gift ideas at x-mas...no othe rmembers are efected other than this ONE MEMBER? or is it that the others that are effected are in the REAL business world and accept that it is normal compatition in the market place!! furhter, should the AMA really decidse what to or not to do basedon a single member? Taht is not only ludicrous but not even feasible.
If four members benefit should they be denied this based on a SINGLE member. I am all for doing what is in the best interests for the majority, but to ask them or expect them to stop because of ONE member...C'mon.....really?
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