I once worked with a technical contractor (let’s call him Bill) that had the special gift of seeing opportunities that others would consider as garbage. Not only was Bill a technical contractor, Bill was also became an accidental eBay entrepreneur!
During a four-year time span, my friend became an expert at creating opportunities on eBay which helped him become rich! Today, I’m going to tell his story of the way he made over $100, 000 on eBay by selling what some considered junk Cisco parts and routers!
It was the year 2001, and the tech industry was coming out of a spending freeze. A few years in the tech market is like 20 years in normal time, or so it seems. Many of the companies had old outdated Cisco routers and now those businesses suddenly had a budget for spending on new technology once again. So many companies pitch or sold their Cisco routers at bargain prices since most businesses considered them junk because they were older and slower than the new Cisco stuff.
Back then, Bill had a desire to learn the ins and outs of Cisco routers, so he went on eBay and started looking to buy a few routers that he could use to setup a lab to help him get Cisco certified. He quickly found a few cheap routers and bought them. To his surprise, he realized that the price he paid for the router didn’t take into consider the T1 communications card. The T1 card was worth as much as he paid for the entire router! Also surprising was the fact that there were a huge number of these exact routers for sell on eBay. Instantly, Bill realized the great opportunity that he had!
You see Bill only paid around $1,000 for each router, but he could take the T1 card out of the Cisco router and turn around and sell both the card and the Cisco router for around $2,000! That is a $1,000 profit, and a 100% profit margin percentage return! He didn’t waste any time buying and selling this Cisco cash cow that he discovered!
As he was making money via his discovery, he still got his Cisco certification with the routers that he bought to learn with. This is when he came up with the brilliant idea of creating a Cisco Certification kit! He would provide the configuration need to accomplish 2 types of certification and sell his new creation for a more profitable price that just selling the Cisco routers alone. This little modification increased his profit margin percentage return to 160% on his Cisco certification kits!
Both fortunately and unfortunately, demand outstripped the amount that he could buy. Since we worked as a contractor, he would miss deal during work hours and during night. At least until he came up with the idea of writing a program that would detect the auctions of this particular Cisco router target, and email him. He had his application setup so that if he replied to an email, his application would buy the Cisco routers for him! This enabled him to overcome the supply problems because he was not buying them up as fast as they would be listed on eBay!
He actually went so far as to modify this program to automatically buy such auctions when they came online, but he only used it a few times because of the potential risk associated with a bad buy.
During these times, Bill confided to me that he was making over $80,000 a year on his little eBay business that he created. And the beauty was that it was big bucks right from the start! Often times a new business could take years to build up to profitability, but here he was making great money right of the bat!
Just guessing what he was making as a contractor at the time, I would have to guess that he was clearing over $200,000 per year from working as a contractor and selling his lucrative Cisco kits!
I learned from my friend to keep my eyes open for opportunities, because there are opportunities all around us, waiting to be discovered.
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