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Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Stabbing Westward

It's happening: Desert Sky Games: Gilbert will be moving to nearby Chandler!
We know this is a big announcement and will set off a lot of questions.  It's too soon for some of them but perfect for others:

Q: Where exactly in Chandler?
A: We are not at liberty to give an exact address until (I think) July 1st.  The destination space and the lease arrangement involve existing businesses.  We don't want to start off our relationship with our landlord by upsetting his tenants, who have their own location moves, upgrades, and potentially closures underway.  It is not far from the current store, and is close to the freeway.

Q: How much room will you have?
A: When fully built, the new store will be five times the size of the current store.  Our gameplay area alone will be more square feet than the entirety of each other store in the East Valley.

Q: When exactly is the move?
A: We have to be clear of the Gilbert location in just under six months, so we're aiming for a late-summer opening knowing it's likely to be more of an early-fall opening.

Q: So why announce so early?
A: An explanation is warranted.  The trendy thing right now is crowdfunding (Kickstarter, Gofundme, Indiegogo) when a store needs to expand, or move, or survive a downturn.  We don't believe in that kind of thing.  Panhandling just isn't our way.  We intend that our clients always get their money's worth.

Meanwhile, construction always costs more than expected, and we intend to fund this entire move out of operating capital rather than borrowing.  (And if we do end up having to borrow, we will still have that option open.)

Therefore: We are starting our MOVING SALE... NOW.

With the plan being that the sale will supplement the construction budget at this early stage.  This also gives us the flexibility to refresh the sale a couple of times every week as we go, adding new deals to give our customers something more to discover.  We have even more merch stored away that there hasn't even been room for us to floor, and now we can bring that out.  Doing all this meant announcing early was best.

Q: So, what kind of deals are we talking about here?
A: We are offering 40% to 90% OFF all items in the moving sale.  Look for the yellow tag.  Prices are good in-store only and are while stock lasts. We are not messing around.

Q: What kind of merch is included in the moving sale?
A: Almost everything, but especially toys and collectibles, board games, miniatures, CMGs, apparel, and accessories.  You know, stuff that takes up room and is bulky or fiddly to transport.  Deep sales on lines like Warmachine/Hordes and Guild Ball, HeroClix, Ultra-Pro, and Funko.

Q: Wait, are you getting out of those categories and games?
A: NO.  In fact, at the new location we're going to have more of them than ever.  It's a paradox of retail finance that it makes more sense to sell off an item, even at a deep discount, and reorder it at full wholesale six months down the road, rather than conveying it.  It's kind of like how you're better off holding a big garage sale before you move, reducing costs for transportation and/or storage.

Q: So you're not dropping board games?
A: Nope.  Keeping them.  DSG Chandler will have room to feature a huge array of board games, including a demo library for players.  The way we always hoped to do it.

Q: And you're not dropping WarmaHordes and Guild Ball?
A: Not at all.  Miniatures players will finally have room to roam at DSG Chandler.  And Warhammer is hotter than ever right now.

Q: What about HeroClix?  You canceled your upcoming events.
A: We are rebooting HeroClix this fall at DSG Chandler.  We saw two straight years without player base growth, which is atypical for a game that is successful at many stores nationwide.  This tells us our processes for HeroClix were not working and not serving our player community.  We're going to give all local Clixers a parting gift with this blowout sale, and then rebuild from the ground up later.  Meanwhile Clix is strong at Imperial Outpost and Game On Prescott to tide you over.

Q: What about comics?  Gilbert moved them all to Tempe.  In fact, what about Tempe?
A: DSG Chandler will have room for all comics, but that's phase two or three.  Phase one is getting DSG Chandler open as a replacement for DSG Gilbert.  DSG Tempe will continue to host the vast comic inventory in the meanwhile.

Q: What about Gilbert?  DSG has a lot of customers east and south of the store.
A: We're still going to be close with easy freeway access.  But this move also gives us an option we didn't have before, that East and South Gilbert customers may like.  The San Tan Village Mall opened its first leases in late 2007.  That means the next 12 to 20 months will see initial 10-year and 5+5 option leases expiring, which opens up an opportunity for a perfect DSG Gilbert branch location at the STV in 2018+. I'm very excited about this as it's a strong commercial property.  It's possible this supersedes the Superstition Springs plan.  We'll reach that question at a later date.

Q: Isn't it going to be weird having a bunch of empty aisles and racks?
A: We have it covered: Another purpose of the sale is so we can take some racks down and move them to Chandler ahead of time.  This will also allow us to open more of the room to gameplay, and make DSG Gilbert a little more comfortable in its final months.

Q: Sounds awesome.  Thanks for explaining all this.  But wait, did you... did you just...
A: Yes, I have been waiting to use that article title for years.  Had we moved in the other direction, I would have used "Eastbound and Down" from Smokey and the Bandit.  North and South weren't really in play because I wanted to stay close to the freeway.  But we're loaded up and truckin', and we're gonna do what they say can't be done.

That's it!  Hope you're as jazzed as we are to move forward into the DSG future with our enormous new hub location and headquarters!  In the meanwhile, we hope you will visit DSG Gilbert and take advantage of deals that, honestly, we will probably never be offering again.

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