por Barbara Kram
, Editor | November 15, 2006
About five years ago, Carlos Vargas
started selling medical, laboratory, and test equipment on eBay. But hes found DOTmed to be more affordable and efficient. DOTmed is far cheaper than eBay because eBay has high fees, he said.
Keeping costs down helps him keep prices down. Half of inCAV Technologies customer base is overseas in South America, Europe, and Asia. About half are end users, half resellers of all types of equipment -- monitors, ventilators, anesthesia machines, x-ray, ultrasound to name a few. Based in San Jose, Calif., inCAV gets its inventory from hospitals and auctions.
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Vargas is in a good position to spot international trends. He has observed that customers in South America used to buy only odd pieces or cheap equipment. But now they are asking for state-of-the-art, newest models, more expensive equipment and they can afford that because the economy is growing. Another thing is prices in late model used equipment are dropping.
Vargas also reports new equipment coming into South America directly from China, driving down prices. American companies had the whole market, like Philips and GE, but now they have competition from China. So the end price of medical equipment [is dropping] a lot. Most people know they can buy top-of-the-line equipment.
His simple formula for success: Customers want the best price possible. I dont try to get a high profit, just a little profit and sell quickly, Vargas said. Right now my goal for the next year is to increase my customer base. We didnt use to have [repeat] customers but since using DOTmed we found two or three good customers who have become regular customers.