Over the past 10 years, the hockey industry has been dominated by 3 brands: Bauer, Reebok/CCM, and Easton.
We have all seen the trend of high end equipment pricing: They add some new "feature" or "design" that they feel warrants increasing the price another 5-10 % from the high end model of the previous year. Skates going for $800 cost the company making them less than 1/7th of that price. Sticks suffer the same crazy mark-up: A stick like an RS from Easton or APX from Bauer cost about $60 at most to make, yet retail for nearly 4 times that amount.
I believe that prices will start to fall next year because of what we are doing at HockeyTron.
As we continue to roll out product that has all the features of the high end vendors but at fractions of the cost, the other companies will feel the pressure and be forced to compete. Since they will be unable to produce any products that are vastly superior to ours, they will be forced to match prices with us. The only way they can match our prices is if they sell direct to the consumer and eliminate all the re-distribution mark-ups.
Take a stick for example. Other than curve and flex, the main feature of a stick that drives the price sky high is the weight. Grab the Elite Blank or the 405 and grab ANY other stick with a price tag that DOUBLES it. You could literally grab scales and weigh them yourself. The numbers won't lie to you. These sticks are so comparable, you will almost feel silly for choosing anything else. Backed by the industry-wide standard 30-day warranty, it's looking more and more like choosing TRON equipment is a no-brainer. All of our $129.99 high-end sticks will offer a guaranty unlike anything else on the market: “If you purchase one of our three high end sticks for $129.99 and feel that the stick is not lighter, more balanced and performs better than your $250 Bauer, Easton or Reebok stick we will take the stick back and give you a full refund."
Let's face some facts head on: Since the better part of 2007, the economy has been suffering. During these times especially, people turn to their hobbies and past-times as much needed stress re-leasers. But what good is your hobby doing to relieve your stress if half your paycheck buys 1 stick that very well COULD snap in your hands the very first time you you use. If the companies feel like they can continuously nickle and dime even their LOYAL customers for all their worth, our company will continue to grow with customers who aren't fooled by gimmicks.
If you change something every year, you drastically cut into yourself over time. They need the sales, so they change products year in and year out. What happens to the old stuff? It still cost the same to make, but now they have to sell it for 219.99 because the NEW thing (The exact same thing in a different color) has the $249.99 tag on it. That hurts manufacturer margins, the retailers margins, and customers STILL get the raw end of the deal. It's a completely broken system.
Bauer, Easton, and other companies have already taken notice of us and are doing everything they can to stop us. We've gotten letters and e-mails from the lawyers and representative from various companies regarding products on our site. No one knows exactly what the future may hold for any of us, but at HockeyTron, trust us when we say this: We have only just begun to do the damage we know we can do in this industry. All because we know what the customers want: Something the other companies just seem to have lost touch with.