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establishing a business (AtB)
#1
I've been playing an AtB merc campaign as an introduction to the tabletop rules.  It's been an enjoyable and enlightening experience.  I've now read my way through most of TW, TM, SO, TO, and FM mercs as well as a handful of other books.  My mercs have had several profitable contracts of late and so I'm now sitting on a decent pile of C-bills and was thinking I would like to "invest" them in a business venture, something that would give a monthly payout to help offset operating and maintenance costs.  I've poked around with the "manage assets" tool in MekHQ as a means to do this.  In all my reading though I have been unable to find any rules, guidelines, or tables as to how this might be done.  I'm perfectly ok with being GM to do something reasonable, I just don't have any context as to what "reasonable" might be (I've fiddled with the lab and made my own custom BAs, so thought I might establish a BA factory).  Are there any established rules or guidelines for something like this already? What is the typical use of the manage assets function?

Thanks for the assistance
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#2
Manage Assets puts in a way for you to establish a permanent source of income, that you can draw off of while you are between contracts. You could I suppose set it up as a net negative (such as a factory) and use it to keep your unit in constant supply of LRM munitions or something similiar. There is a page in the ATB ruleset regarding playing as a noble, I haven't tested them out to its fullest yet, but they seem reasonable and is a good place to start experimenting.
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#3
(12-12-2017, 03:34 AM)Sidewinder Wrote: Manage Assets puts in a way for you to establish a permanent source of income, that you can draw off of while you are between contracts.
That's exactly what I'm trying to do, just want to do so in a manner that is fair.

(12-12-2017, 03:34 AM)Sidewinder Wrote: There is a page in the ATB ruleset regarding playing as a noble, I haven't tested them out to its fullest yet, but they seem reasonable and is a good place to start experimenting.

I assume you mean the excel file I just found in the docs folder? I'll check it out, thanks.
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#4
In the RPG book A Time of War there are rules for managing investments and that sort of thing. You might want to check those out.
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#5
AToW has annual income for example property but no buy cost (uses trait TP), AtB excel sheet has costs for a few things (factories, starports, etc) but no incomes. If I try to combine the 2 (factory costs from AtB and income from AToW) then the estimated return on investment would be 200 years!

Using the costs from AtB ( 20,000,000 c-bills for a factory) with a 3% return monthly (600,000 c-bills, 7,200,000 a year) then full return on investment (RoI) would be seen in 2 years 9 months. Alternatively, if I calculate for an estimated 5 year RoI then the monthly income would be 333,333 c-bils (4,000,000 a year) or 1.67%.

Anyone who knows the lore does 20,000,000 seems like a reasonable cost for a moderate factory? Do either of those values seem like reasonable payouts? One more than the other?

RP wise I figure I will get the Dragoons permission to make it on outreach and will be a small producer of new design battle armors from salvage I obtained defending against the clans and reverse engineered (the year is 3055, I fought the clans at the end of 51)
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#6
It all really depends on what you are producing.

And here's where the economics of the whole thing really gets fuzzy. The building itself, 20M is probably a little excessive. But, you'd probably have to include defensive weapons, auxiliary power, testing grounds, target dummies, landing site, etc. So maybe it is about right.

Now the big question, is what does it COST to build your Battle Armor? This is not what the final price is, this is what the resources to construct it, the manpower to put it together, and the techs to test it. Not to mention the engineers to design it. If you figure on a reasonable markup, RLC (Resource+Labor Costs) is probably somewhere around 70%.

Once you have that, then you would have to determine how many of these do you build per month? A dozen? A hundred? A hundred seems on the high side especially if its just a start up, maybe start it off at a dozen, and then scale it up to somewhere around 50 or 60, once you get past the initial production problems that always plague a first generation product.
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#7
I found rules in Campain Ops and Tac Ops for construction of buildings and land purchase. A factory 2 stories tall and the size of a football stadium (7 hexes) would cost about 15 million and 2 months to build. I really have no idea on the scale for this, but I'm assuming that to be a reasonable space to produce battle armors at 12 a month. The purchased land would be the size of an entire map sheet.

The Basilisk Combat Armor costs 4,492,500 new and ships with 6 suits per squad. Assuming as you suggest that RLC is 70% of that than the 30% profit would be 1,347,750, or 2,695,500 a month for 2 squads (12 suits). The Cockatrice Scout Armor is 2,820,000 million new, so would be 1,692,000 a month profit at 12 suits a month.

Both of these values seem unfairly high to me, and 60 suits would be a ridiculous 13.5 million a month.

mekHQ has some orbital station factories which are listed having "1 factory unit" or "1 small factory unit" I have not been able to find what this means in any of the books. my only guess would be that a "factory unit" (FU) would be game terms for someplace where you could do factory class refits for 1 mech per "unit". Pulling an old trick from DnD, if I assume that 1 mech bay can be used as 2 vehicle bays which can each be used as 2 battle armor bays, then a 54million c-bill orbital factory could produce 4 suits at a time. For simplicity, let's assume a 1 month build time (reasonable as most factory refits I've found take ~1-2 months for a single tech team) and using your suggested 70% RLC monthly profits would be 898,500.

Does that seem more fair?

Edit: Realized this opens a new question. If I buy an orbital factory will the game try to somehow make it travel with me when I go out on contracts?
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#8
(12-13-2017, 07:57 AM)Bczretribution Wrote: I found rules in Campain Ops and Tac Ops for construction of buildings and land purchase.  A factory 2 stories tall and the size of a football stadium (7 hexes) would cost about 15 million and 2 months to build.  I really have no idea on the scale for this, but I'm assuming that to be a reasonable space to produce battle armors at 12 a month.  The purchased land would be the size of an entire map sheet.  

The Basilisk Combat Armor costs 4,492,500 new and ships with 6 suits per squad.  Assuming as you suggest that RLC is 70% of that than the 30% profit would be 1,347,750, or 2,695,500 a month for 2 squads (12 suits).  The Cockatrice Scout Armor is 2,820,000 million new, so would be 1,692,000 a month profit at 12 suits a month.  

Both of these values seem unfairly high to me, and 60 suits would be a ridiculous 13.5 million a month.  

mekHQ has some orbital station factories which are listed having "1 factory unit" or "1 small factory unit" I have not been able to find what this means in any of the books.  my only guess would be that a "factory unit" (FU) would be game terms for someplace where you could do factory class refits for 1 mech per "unit".  Pulling an old trick from DnD, if I assume that 1 mech bay can be used as 2 vehicle bays which can each be used as 2 battle armor bays, then a 54million c-bill orbital factory could produce 4 suits at a time.  For simplicity, let's assume a 1 month build time (reasonable as most factory refits I've found take ~1-2 months for a single tech team) and using your suggested 70% RLC monthly profits would be 898,500.  

Does that seem more fair?

Edit: Realized this opens a new question.  If I buy an orbital factory will the game try to somehow make it travel with me when I go out on contracts?

Some thoughts...
Just keep track of it in an XLS. Add it to Assets. Don't forget you will have to pay taxes on the profit. I used 30%. The building seems pretty cheap. My 5 hex (CF: 90) factory building was about 40m CB. You might also want to randomize your profit. Just for instance... roll 2d6, for every less than 7 -5%, for every 1 more +5%.
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#9
(12-13-2017, 11:52 AM)scJazz Wrote: Some thoughts...
Just keep track of it in an XLS. Add it to Assets. Don't forget you will have to pay taxes on the profit. I used 30%. The building seems pretty cheap. My 5 hex (CF: 90) factory building was about 40m CB. You might also want to randomize your profit. Just for instance... roll 2d6, for every less than 7 -5%, for every 1 more +5%.

I made the factory cf 50, though I think that my prior number is wrong, that was the cost for the first floor, its 2 stories tall so it should be double that around 30 mil. I did make it with heavy superstructure and high ceilings too. No weapons just filled it with random equipment for simplicity. I was planning to use some of my administrators to do administration rolls using the rules from AToW (+-5% per 2 MoS or MoF). Out of curiosity what do you make with your factory? is it for profit, supplies, or something else?
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#10
Like I said I was just tossing stuff out. I make Armor as IMHO something as small as a Merc unit probably doesn't have the kind of expertise it takes to design, prototype, test, and manufacture something like Battle Armor, Mechs, ASF, etc. I limited myself to things like Small Arms, Components (like a Medium Laser), and Armor. Also 30% is probably far too high. 15% might be a better baseline.
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