Transcript of Video Titled "Massage Chair Industry Update - September 1, 2021"
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Alan: Hi, I'm Dr. Alan Weidner from 'Massage-Chair-Relief.com' and today is our biweekly massage chair industry update for Wednesday, September 1st, 2021. Thank you so much for joining me. We've got lots of good information this week, and we'll begin with Labor Day, which is just around the corner.
[SCREEN TEXT: Labor Day Sales!]
Alan: There are some sales going on. Infinity is offering their Sharper Image Relieve 3D chair for $3499, regularly $4999. Also, Osaki is offering the Osaki Admiral and the Osaki First Class, well, they're offering a two-year extended warranty for both chairs, but they're keeping the price discounted on the First Class at $4999, which was the sale from last month. Furniture for Life is offering a $500 Omaha Steak gift card for their OHCO M.8 series, their D.Core Cirrus chair, and their Panasonic MAJ7 chair. They are offering a $350 Omaha Steak gift card for the other models they have, except for the Positive Posture Sol, for which they are not offering any gift cards. Then those are the sales right now.
[SCREEN TEXT: Ogawa Travel Surcharge Bumps Up to 12%, Increasing Overall Cost of Their Chairs]
Alan: Now, today is September 1st, today is the day that Ogawa increases their travel surcharge from 7% to 12%. So, the cost on those chairs has gone up steadily for the last couple of months. Originally, it was a 5% freight surcharge, then it was a 7%, and now they’ve bumped it up to 12%. So, the cost on these chairs has gone up 12%, and pretty much every company, except for Luraco and Daiwa has increased their prices through a travel surcharge because of the exorbitant cost of shipping these chairs from China to the United States. I don't know why some companies only offer 5%, like Furniture for Life, and other companies offer 12% surcharges, or charge us those charges, like in Ogawa's case. And Ogawa, by the way, is Ogawa, Cozzia, JPMedics and Brookstone, those are all Ogawa or Cozzia labels. I don't know it's 5% for one and 12% for the other, but that is pretty much apropos in the market these days, with these increased shipping costs. Of course, the companies are expecting these shipping, these exorbitant shipping costs to go down. We just don’t know when, some are presuming maybe October, November, but I have a feeling it's not going to because there's going to be a higher demand, more shipping during the Black Friday through Christmas season, and I can't imagine that shipping is going to get easier, but anyway, or cheaper, for that matter. So, but anyway, just so that you're aware of that.
[SCREEN TEXT: D.Core Cloud Discontinued and Out of Stock]
Alan: Also, the D.Core Cloud has been discontinued by Furniture for Life. The chair had been discontinued for quite some time, but we still had them available for sale until the stock was gone, and the stock is now gone, so that chair is no more, but you still have the D.Core Cirrus and the D.Core Stratus options.
[SCREEN TEXT: New Luraco i9 Massage Chair Coming Soon!]
Alan: Luraco is coming out with their i9, and it's coming out pretty soon, and I'm going to be putting up an article this week on my blog about what we know about the i9 so far, and this is a summary of what we know about it. It has what they call a split L-track, and I don't know if that’s like, they had a video that accompanied the intro to this chair, and I'll post that as well, but I don't know if a split L-track, and they didn’t go in to this is great detail, but I don't know if the split L-track is going to be like what the Daiwa Supreme Hybrid has, where it's two separate tracks that are hinged, as part of the L-track, but this i9 is an L-track with a split L. It'll have side doors that'll slide back. You know, the OHCO has side doors that open, like a car door, this one has slide doors, or side armrests that slide back like a sliding door on your patio, you know, door, or something like that. Of course, it's US made. Now, in the past, their other chairs, you know, the i7 Plus and the Luraco Legend Plus have been, they're made in the USA, but many of their noncritical components have been made in Taiwan. As a matter of fact, Luraco is the only chair maker that does not have any components made in China. Even the chairs that are made in Japan, quote, unquote, made in Japan, have their components, most, if not all of them, made in China, but Luraco is the only company that doesn't. Now, from what I understand, they’ve moved a lot of the other building, a lot of the other components are being built in America now too, like the frame, and I don't know if the body itself, like the armrests, or if the motors are coming from Taiwan, I don't know yet, I'll have a better idea.
[SCREEN TEXT: I Am Traveling to Luraco's Head Office in Arlington, TX on 9-16-21 to Try Out the Luraco i9]
Alan: I'm actually flying out to Denver, or to Denver, to Dallas, on September 16th to spend the day there, and to get some video of the new chair, and kind of get introduced to the new chair, and I of course, will share that with you on my blog and you can kind of, you know, you can go to my blog any time and see what we're talking about, but you can also download my free report from the website, and when you do that, then you'll be automatically emailed with my newsletter every week, which kind of gives you an update on what we've learned and what we're seeing, what the latest blog post is, and what the latest video is, etcetera, etcetera. So, if you want to do that, go ahead, there may be some mailers that you don't want to read, and that’s OK, but if you want to get updated on what's going on, downloading one of our free reports will put you on our newsletter list right away, and you'll get updated. The new chair has three, or sorry, calf rollers, two calf rollers on the calves. This is first chair with calf rollers and they're having three rollers on the feet, so a little bit more full coverage, full roller coverage on the feet and they're coming out with arm rollers, arm-and-hand rollers. So, right now, the D.Core Cirrus is the only chair, and Stratus, I believe, the D.Core Stratus, that has arm rollers, and this is the second chair that will have it. Now, we tested this chair, the prototype of this chair about two years ago at the CES, or Consumer Electronics Show in Vegas, and it was very, very rudimentary back then. It was not, it was not a terribly comfortable chair, because it was just a prototype. They just put this thing together for the show, but you could see that it had some great capacity, like a better stretch program, the arm rollers, the sliding doors on the side, it was all pretty cool, but we knew it at that time that there needed to be a lot of improvements on it, and they knew it of course, they told us. They didn't let anybody else sit in it, just dealers, because they didn’t want, they didn’t want the general public to sit in it and go 'Holy cow, this doesn't feel like a new chair,' and because it wasn’t, it was still a prototype. But it's all, it's about ready now, it was supposed to come out the fourth quarter of last year, COVID came along and everything changed, as you know, and so now it's been delayed until this week, or this next quarter. So, we're expecting to see it either at the end of September, or the beginning of October, something like that, but they will have it out before the shopping season, for Black Friday and the Christmas holidays. So, anyway, when I go there, I will make a report of that experience, and take videos, and hopefully, have some chats with the engineers for made in America, new i9 from Luraco. I'm very interested to see how it's going to be, we're going to have it in our showrooms, so people will be able to come and give it a whirl. Also, I noticed back when we saw the prototype at the Consumer Electronics Show, I don't remember much about the body, but it didn’t look like the i7 or the Luraco Legend, from what I recall. But now, I've seen the video, and they’ve patterned the body style the same as the the other chairs. So, their chairs will have, they are kind of homogenous in the way they look. So, you see one and you kind of get a vibe for how they all look, it's very, I would have to say, it's part of their brand to have the same body styling on their chairs, but of course, the chairs are completely different. The i7 Plus is an S-track chair, the Luraco Legend Plus is an L-track, and the i9 is an L-track, but with all these additional things, like the sliding doors, the calf rollers, the split L-track, all these different things, but the brand look is very similar.
[SCREEN TEXT: New Brand of "Made in Korea" Massage Chairs Coming Very Soon to the USA]
Alan: Alright, so that’s coming out and speaking of new lines, there's a, and I've alluded to this before, and I'm not allowed to mention yet, the name of the new brand, the new model line, but there's a new line of chairs coming out. They're Korean chairs, and apparently, quite good, and they have some interesting features that we've not seen in a chair before, and it has to do with sound, audio waves, soundwaves, sonic waves, and that kind of add to the comfort and the relaxation of the chair, and I've sat on the chairs. There's two models coming out, and we will have one of them in our showrooms. But I can't mention the name of the chair, or what, it's going to be, this line is going to be part of an existing brand. It'll become another line of chairs under an existing brand, an existing company's brands. So, we'll let you know about it, we're excited about it. It'll be interesting to see what's going on. We don’t have many Korean chairs. As a matter of fact, the Health Mate chairs, the 8200 and 5200 are the only Korean chairs that we carry. We used to carry the BodyFriend, and we don’t carry them anymore, those were considered Korean chairs. And again, when they say made in Korea, the chairs are pretty much made in China, but Health Mate and this company, they export the parts to Korea, where the assembly, the testing, and the programming go on, and maybe even some added parts. I believe Health Mate does add some made-in-Korea components that are compatible with the chair that give it some extra functionality. But this brand will be promoted quite thoroughly by the company that is bringing the brand to market here in the US, and we're excited to see it. And so, I will be, like I said, I've sat on those chairs already back a few months ago, and I will be, we'll have those in the showroom, and we will sit in them, and go through them a little bit more thoroughly. But anyway, so that is going on there, and I believe that’s just about it for this week. You know, we're coming up to the busy season, the summer season, which is typically slower is fast passing, and I'm kind of melancholy about it because I love summer. I'm a Canadian boy, and winter was like, I don't know, it just felt like complete isolation and solitude, except for when we outside and played hockey and froze our noses, and our fingers, and our toes off. And that made that, if it wasn’t for hockey, I think a lot of us would go even more insane during those cold winters out there. But you know, now I live in Utah and the winters are very, very mild compared to Canadian winters, not nearly as cold when the snow comes, and it melts within a few days. It's quite a bit more enjoyable, but I still am not a big fan of winter, except maybe, of course, for, I do miss having outdoor hockey rinks, and I do miss sometimes, you know, I love the snow falling at Christmastime, and a nice, still, quiet night, a winter night, in the dark, it's beautiful. But anyway, I don't know why I'm rambling on about that, but anyway, just know that right now, of course, I was talking about how melancholy I am about summer being over. But anyway, we're looking forward to an exciting fourth quarter with new chair lines, new chair models, with of course, Black Friday/Cyber Monday coming up, and Christmas sales. So, it'll be an exciting time, and we'll have a lot more information to share with you. Let's keep our fingers crossed that we're not going to have the COVID problems with the ports, because there are chairs that will be back-ordered, and I'll guarantee you, as we come close to Black Friday/Cyber Monday, stock will diminish, chair stock will diminish, and colors will go out, and people will start to panic and want to get what they want, but we're going to be, just brace yourself for the, you know, back-orders taking a while to get through, and last year, we had a phenomenally difficult time getting chairs through. I remember chairs that were ordered at the end of November that didn’t get through the ports until March. So, anyway, order early if you can. There's good stock right now on most companies, and but that’s because summer is typically a little bit slower time, and so they stock up for the holidays. But those, and I've been telling you this for years in this massage chair industry update for those of you that have been following me. The stock does disappear, and people didn’t believe me at first, they thought I was just trying to get people to hurry up and buy, and that’s not the case at all. This is just the way it is, and at Christmas, it gets crazy, and Black Friday through Christmas gets crazy with the popularity of these chairs at Christmas.
[SCREEN TEXT: 888-259-5380]
Alan: Anyway, I guess that’s just about it for this week. If you have any questions, feel free to give me a call at 888-259-5380. I'd be happy to answer any questions for you. You can also reach out to us through our Facebook page, our YouTube channel, if you have any comments or questions about a particular chair there, or you can chat with us online through our chat feature. There's lots of ways to get a hold of us, and we're quite responsive. We try to answer the calls during every waking hour of the day, we don’t just have fixed hours.
[SCREEN TEXT: Please "Thumbs Up" Like This Video!!]
Alan: So, anyway, that’s just about it for this week. If you found this video helpful, please feel free to thumbs up 'Like' us on our YouTube channel, and of course, help us spread the word about massage chairs by sharing this video, or any of our videos with your friends and family through your social media platforms. I'm Dr. Alan Weidner from 'Massage-Chair-Relief.com,' and I will see you again in two weeks. Bye bye.
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