Nova hockey Journal June 27

Some of you are aware of the various battles we had to fight to bring Nova Hockey to market. It took us three years from ideation to market launch. The parts went through many forms, and we had no choice but to sacrifice some prototypes that would have made the selling price too high, in favor of the minimum viable product.

Video of the evolution of Nova Hockey (Part 1) :

The wood goal prototype :

The white goal prototype :

The good news is that the product has been up and running since 2022, and our customer base is growing. We are reaching new milestones, though we still aspire to live our dream. It's a very difficult step to take. At times, the business thrives due to soaring demand, and other times sales drop to almost zero. We want to dedicate ourselves 100%, but when the business generates little income, due to our family obligations and associated costs, it becomes worrying.

Boost in sales :

Boost ins sales :

It's always to move toward this dream, to live our passion, that we recently launched a Patreon. So, for those who want to support us, this is one way to do it. Of course, we offer exclusive perks like videos with commentary and promo codes available only to Patreons (check out Le Nova Hockey on Patreon)

Another good motivation to follow us on Patreon, besides your crucial support, is getting a behind-the-scenes look. Often while we practice on the videos, we also discuss our aspirations, future prototypes, improvements, and our challenges. But in French.

So if anyone believes that Nova Hockey must exist at all costs, know that you share our belief.

As we are from Quebec, the only French-speaking province in Canada, we primarily communicate in French. We aim to break into the hockey market, dominated by the rest of Canada (English-speaking) and the ever-growing American market. Knowing our audience well, we add subtitles to our uncut Patreon videos. This way, Francophones hear what we say, and Anglophones can follow along by reading.

Initially, we started from tangible facts; the idea was simple to realize. It wasn’t like launching a space probe, but rather the commercialization of simple machined parts. This was the first observation that motivated our initiative to launch this product. Given its simplicity, our novice entrepreneurial minds took a bumpy road for a recreational crossing.

The second observation was the potential of a hockey game in Canada. For example, here's an article reminding us how dominant we still are in the NHL.

In light of these two observations, we believed in instant success. However, we are far from the $200,000 turnover forecast for 2019-2020, as we hadn't even passed the research and development stage back then.

We love what we do and have no other plans but to realize our ambitions. But for all the young people who aim to create their own job, know that it doesn’t happen overnight. I would be happy to share my experience in more detail with those who think they could benefit from it.

Yes, Nova Hockey always wants to improve its approach. The parts will evolve, and there will be additions, including targets, which will probably be the next item to make their debut.

But the goal could also see improvements. Our TikTok videos this week feature a slightly different model.

Sequence on the chinese prototype goal :

It's a prototype we had brought in from China with the intention of offering it. Some people have a rather negative opinion of outsourcing to China, but this country is currently establishing itself as a key player in the manufacturing of sports equipment.

Naturally left-leaning like most young people during higher education, I had formed an extremely negative opinion of outsourcing abroad.

One fact remains: it is true that our currency allows us to outsource cheaply, but this same currency has enabled China, in particular, to develop technologies that have positioned them as essential in the manufacturing of sports equipment for all major professional leagues in North America.

For this reason, when we sought to produce a goal through local outsourcing in Quebec, we hit a wall. Not only is it very difficult to get a competitive price, but we also end up with a higher unit cost than what China could offer, and for lower quality.

We are very proud of the goal we currently offer, which comes from outsourcing to two companies. One is based in Quebec City (yes, it can be confusing). This company manufactures the metal structures of the goal. A second company, based in Pakistan, handles the manufacturing of the Velcro nets. The result was interesting; I’m a fan myself. However, in terms of quality, we find ourselves a few notches below the goal you can see in our videos of the week on the Chinese prototype.

What prevents us from marketing this prototype through our offer is the minimum quantity we are required to order from the Chinese. Our working capital does not currently allow for such a substantial investment, which is why we offer the version you see available now.

Just to give you an idea, the Chinese have the machines that allow them to program the manufacture of mesh fabrics, like those you see on NHL goals, according to the desired size. For example, they could launch the order to produce 10 nets of such dimensions with 1-inch mesh holes. We don’t have this technology in Quebec.

For all these reasons, when liquidity permits, don't be surprised to see a goal made in China enter the scene, visually more attractive and at a more competitive price.

The goal you see this week in our TikTok posts is larger than the one currently offered in our store. Interesting. Some may wonder why we decided to use this goal suddenly for a series of videos. It was my brother's idea as we were about to film content. I casually placed the goal we currently offer, and he suggested using the Chinese prototype. We thought it would be an interesting idea, especially since several people had complained about the size of our goalie compared to the goal we currently offer. A number of people found the goal too big, which was a problem. My brother and I have a lot of practice, so we found it quite funny as we often managed to ridicule the goalie with precise shots in the current ratio.

The goal was to make a video with the larger goal, the Chinese portable one, to show how ridiculous it would be to enlarge the goal or shrink the goalie. Confident, we set up expecting a real offensive festival, a blowout for the goalie. What happened next surprised us. It is true that the match was more offensive but not categorically so. We found the score interesting, realizing once again that the community is not foolish. You have to listen to the comments of our audience and learn. It's hard to give a date, but amid the changes to come, it is very likely that the ratio will also be revised.

We hope this blog has given you a detailed overview of our journey and our challenges. Your support is crucial for us to continue moving forward and achieving our dream. Follow us on Patreon and stay tuned for new developments at Nova Hockey. Thank you for your continued support and for believing in our vision.

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