In this Prime Talk Podcast Sponsored by GETIDA – Talor Ofer - Founder & CEO - Retail Empire which deeply looks into your operation and finds your readiness level, then provides you with the best tools that are out there for your brand name to grow correctly & healthy directly towards becoming a winner brand name in physical stores of the biggest US retailers, also more information about his life's journey. #TalorOfer #SellOffline
About Talor Ofer of Retail Empire - Retail Empire is a group of individuals specializing in product development, manufacturing, logistics, and most importantly: Getting your product in front of the best audience. They can place your product in some of the most popular department and private label stores in the USA.
Yoni Mazor: (00:06)
Hi, everybody. Welcome to another episode of prime talk. Today I have a special guest. Today I'm having Talor Ofer. Talor Ofer is the founder and CEO of retail empire, which is a solution for expanding from online retail to traditional retails. So if you're only selling, for example, on Amazon you know, it can help you go into regular stores or to create TV sales and stuff like that. They'll share more with us about it later on, but in the meantime, hello, welcome to the show.
Talor Ofer: (00:32)
Thank you. Thank you so much for having me. It's great seeing you Yoni.
Yoni Mazor: (00:36)
How are the same here? Good. Good. Thank you so much. It's a pleasure to have you. But today's episode is gonna be all about you. It's gonna be the story of Talor Ofer. You're gonna share with us everything gonna share with us. Why are you, where are you from? Where were you born? Where'd you grow up? Where'd you go to school? How'd you begin your professional career station to station until where you are today, especially with the world of e-commerce helping e-commerce sellers expand their businesses. So I guess without further ado, let's jump right into it.
Talor Ofer: (01:02)
You got it. So yeah, it's quite different from other podcasts that I've been to and I've seen. So my story is a story like everyone else. yeah, I mean, to be honest, I started my business life with sandwiches and it was like when I was six or seven years old and my father was dealing with education. He was running schools and everything. And my mother was a library manager. She still is.
Yoni Mazor: (01:33)
Where did you guys live? Your family? Where were you born? Where'd you grow up?
Talor Ofer: (01:35)
Well, that's the thing I grew up in like, I think in 10 or 11 different places across Israel. I live in Intel Aviv currently, but with my family, I moved like, as I said, 10 or 11 times
Yoni Mazor: (01:48)
All in the same area or around the country
Talor Ofer: (01:50)
Around the country. Cause the thing
Yoni Mazor: (01:52)
North, middle, south, everywhere?
Talor Ofer: (01:53)
Everywhere. The thing with my father is, he passed away last year. But the thing with him was that he was always looking for the new, you know, new staff, new projects, something exciting. So he was keeping a job for like between two to five years and then he goes to the next thing. So we moved with him as a family when I was six or seven, as I mentioned, I remember he opened like a kind of store, like, you know, local grocery store, like the simple one in the school for volunteers that came from the states, from the USA. And that's how I started to learn English. Cae I, I did learn English in school, but in real life. And not only that, but I also learned how to trade. So I was the one who's selling them sandwiches and Sprite and Coke and everything. And that was cool. Cause you know,
Yoni Mazor: (02:39)
Alright, let me understand something straight. Your father was an entrepreneur, was a business, man or what was he doing?
Talor Ofer: (02:45)
No, he was not doing a business. He was like an education in the educational field. And he was managing schools, mainly internal schools you know, kind of schools where you sleep at or some of the people are still sleeping in it. Some of them are external and everything, but it's like,
Yoni Mazor: (03:04)
you're saying boarding schools?
Talor Ofer: (03:05)
Right, Yeah. It's lia ke small village kind of
Yoni Mazor: (03:09)
Got it, and with that framework, when you're six years old, you started to sell sandwiches from your initiative just to make money. Right.
Talor Ofer: (03:15)
So he thought we, he brought like volunteers from the USA to wanted to know the country and to know the culture and everything. And he thought like, all right, we have a vacation of two months from school every year in the summer. So why don't I just, you know, open something nice for them. So they don't need to travel around the city and look for a can of Coke or, you know, chocolate or sandwich.
Yoni Mazor: (03:38)
So basically make a people visiting Israel, feel that Israel is not that small, you know, we have food and drinks everywhere.
Talor Ofer: (03:46)
It’s true. But we're talking about, you on the ow the 80s and we're talking about, you know, not central Israel.
Yoni Mazor: (03:54)
Yeah. There are more places. Yeah. We're, we're developed even there are remote places somewhere in America out of nowhere, you can always get a Coca-Cola. You want to put that touch on the American visitor. Thatprettytty good.
Talor Ofer: (04:03)
It's not a desert herNotnot. I mean, if you would see what I see from the window, it looks almost like New York, if not the same anyway. So yeah, I wanting there and finding, you know, besides the English and everything, finding the secrets, the first secrets the of trade and I always remember that because when I grew up during the stations, I went through, you know, school, college and then I started to travel and so forth. And I said that I used to travel because you know, it relates to what I've been through with my family when I moved with them from place to place. And you have your, you know, friend friends from school and you have mates, you know, playing around afternoon and everything. And then after three or four years, you have to change the whole thing and start from zero. Then it's, it's not easy. You know, as a kid, as grown-up up. So when I just, you know, when I finished school and everything and went to them all, because back here in Israel, we go to the army three years must.
Yoni Mazor: (05:01)
Before we jump into the army. So where did you graduate? Where'd you go to high school and graduate? Well, that's more your, you know, your formidable years where you feel, okay, I'm a teenager. Where was the year's It just for my reference actually, which part of Israel
Talor Ofer: (05:17)
It was it's for your reference. It wsomeplaceace called Gadara if you ever have
Yoni Mazor: (05:22)
Sure. Yeah. Good deal. Yeah. Yeah. Quite, not too far from center re. Yeah. It's a little bit more this out, but yeah. Good. I think it's one of the colonies of the Baron of Rochelle, they say, right. It was right. So one of the colonies that the Baron from Rachelle a very wealthy family from Europe back in the day help to settle early on. Okay. So that's when you graduated high school and then you went to the army you know, just a kind background information here in the state of Israel armyrmy is mandatory for men and women, when you hit, you know, after high school, usually typically 17, 18 or 19 years old, you go for three years for men, two years for ladies take us there. What was the moment for you?
Talor Ofer: (06:07)
Well, the moment for me, I volunteered for a special unit because I wanted to be, you know, doing my maximum. I was there for like training for like, I don't know, six or eight months, something like that. And then I got injured in my skin.
Yoni Mazor: (06:19)
Which unit was that?
Talor Ofer: (06:21)
Which unit, Metar if you ever heard of
Yoni Mazor: (06:24)
And what they the, what's the specialty for that unit?
Talor Ofer: (06:27)
Well, they had some kind of equipment, I would say that is lia ke secret.
Yoni Mazor: (06:33)
Yeah, but this is the infantry side. This is more of a combative unit or more lian ke intelligent unit, more of a technological unit?
Talor Ofer: (06:40)
There are two parts. One part is the like tech side, which is the equipment, while we can talk about. And the other side how-to to is, is the like how would I call it like outdoor teams I would say that are out there. And you know,
Yoni Mazor: (06:58)
The field team is, on the field
Talor Ofer: (07:00)
Our team's job eventually was supposed to be like marking the target when it's like, you know, super far so that the equipment could be reaching it out. I think you understand.
Yoni Mazor: (07:14)
Very, very cool. Yeah, sure. So that was the first seven, eight months with your service.
Talor Ofer: (07:18)
Then I got insured in the skin. I had a lot of issues. I was carrying those skin issues here and there sometimes for years later on, but thanks God it's gone. anyways, I ended up being you know, like doing mellow-ended service in the army. I would say they wanted to dismiss me, but I didn't want, you know, to be dismissed because I wanted to be like everyone else. And
Yoni Mazor: (07:44)
You want to contribute to the more basic roles within the framework. Got it. So exactly
Talor Ofer: (07:48)
My other roles were just so basic that, you know, nothing they are interesting. The only thing I could tell you about the other, the rest of the two-year two-plus years is that I kind of realized that my, you know, contribution is not that really serious and big. So I ended starting three different works, jobs during the army. So I was working nights at days afternoons whenever I could just to make sure that I have enough money when I'm done with the army. So I can, you know, catch a flight and start my real life, which is what I was waiting for.
Yoni Mazor: (08:20)
Okay. So let's touch the years right now. So which year did you get drafted and which year did you finish your service?
Talor Ofer: (08:27)
95 to 98(1995 to 1998). It's quite a piece of history. yeah,
Yoni Mazor: (08:32)
Italy bit more on the peaceful side of things. Right. There was kind of the peace era. You know, everybody wants to have peace and 95 was a little rough. We had some Rocky stars, but it was a little bit of euphoria. I think it's gonna peace are in the middle east. So relatively speaking, but the middle east was a bit more on the quieter side. So that was okay. That's right. So 1998, you get released, you have some money in your pocket. What's the next session for you?
Talor Ofer: (08:59)
So I went, you know, I worked a little bit more in Israel and then I thought, all right, I'm I just wanna travel. First of all, before I start, you know, looking for my path and I ended up traveling for ng half a year in India with a motorbike and friend and we wely crossing.
Yoni Mazor: (09:15)
I wanna touch that. I don't think I ever touched this on the podcast yet, but what's a story with, I'm a part of the story, by the way, what's a story with the Israelis who finish their military service and they go out to travel the world. Six months is kind of the golden and the sweet spot. What do you think that is? Between two Israelis? The nobody listening.
Talor Ofer: (09:34)
Well, it's not only Israeli, but yeah, it's a major thing back in here. And I believe that this is related to two issues. Number one is the army cause for three years, you are re so-called property of someone else and you only have your own life. I mean, you don't, you can't just, you know, grab a bag or whatever it is, suitcase and fly to somewhere or just travel outside or whatever, you are a property, you know, you’re serving the military, like almost 24/7 not including weekly. So 24/6. But anyway that's the first thing that I see as a reason. And the second thing is that you know, at its nature being surrounded with a little bit, not a little bit, but some a few enemies
Yoni Mazor: (10:15)
unfriendly conscious. We're not saying, ing enemy. It's. Yeah. So the saying the oneighborhoodood is not so friendly too to, to on the social level. So you can go around and socialize with other cultures and this and that. So the combination of both mixes up, click the eject button, take us out for a few mon, this and then going back on track. Yeah
Talor Ofer: (10:36)
Exactly. So we, yeah, I mean, there's a lot of pressure in here, so yeah. That's like some kind of something that like a lot of people thinking, okay, I'm gonna done with the army before I'm going to college and starting my life, getting married, kids and everything. I want to have, you know, some space for myself. It's something li a compensation for those three years and the general pressure that there, there is out here in Israel. So anyway, yeah, I mean, traveled across the whole country in India. It was I think the best time of my life. Cause you know, you travel, you don't, you're not, you know, related to anything. It's just, you know, you're like
Yoni Mazor: (11:08)
Yeah, you live for your pleasure. So my trip after my service, I went South America, you went to India or Southeast India. I went South America, six months, every dathe y, the way you wake up. I, what do I wanna do? Which will give me tremendous pleasure. So it's a very, very sweet moment in life to have I do encourage people. It doesn't have to be Israelis only if you're listening to this, you have an opportunity in your life. You have a window, a few months s, a few weeks to go travel outside the world, does it cherish those moments put in your database because once you go back into the grind you're gonna need it. It's always fun to remember what used to be so true. If fulosesose you with energy, as you go along today day as you continue your life. Go ahead.
Talor Ofer: (11:48)
True. Anyway, I I've been after six months I flew to, to Thailand. Cause I heard about, you know, working in Japan options and everything. And I ended up flying to Japan to work while my mother was thinking that I'm gonna go back home, but I didn't, they were still waiting. And I went to Japan at 99, I think. Yeah. 1999s, beginning of summersmer. Started, you know, with sellijewelryery is in selling stuff like that. I ended the establishing wn stores in Japan with a bunch of with a team by my own with a team. And that's where I learned, you know, a bit more about trade because we used to import accessories and, you know pop products from Thailand aom Korea so that's where I started to learn how it works in terms of, you know, how to trade worldwide, like internationally, like how does it get on the plane? What do you pay? What does it cost? All the terms and everything. It was you know the w, the first steps. But it was good cause we had like a bunch of quite a lot of stores and with…
Yoni Mazor: (12:54)
which areas of Japan, if I may ask
Talor Ofer: (12:56)
Fukuoka, which is the south, it's the main cion in the south island, which is Kyushu. It's Japan is divided into five islands. So I was in the south one
Yoni Mazor: (13:07)
The most Southern one thing, the last one on the bottom.
Talor Ofer: (13:10)
Yeah, exactly. It's built like something like that. So yeah, on the bottom and Tokyo is somewhere on the top, but not on ttopmostost, and also is in the middle just for the general info. So yeah Fukuoka is I think the third or fourth biggest city in Japan, that's where I was living and working. It was fun. It will be cool. And I ended up being there for three years
Yoni Mazor: (13:36)
Whois ch pretty like a military service. He served the Japanese side of things. Okay. So that's 1999 to like 2002. I want to jump, I guess, to a bit deeper into your experience in Japan, you know, three years in a nutshell, how do coming from the outside middle east Israel in Japan? What was your impression and what was it like for you?
Talor Ofer: (13:56)
Well, it felt like jumping from 1999 directly to 2000,,250 or something like that especially after, yeah. Especially after being in India. Cause when you land in India, the first steps before you see, you know, all of it, you feel like you've been dropped a hundred years, you knbackwardrds. So anyway, here was the vice versa was going like, you know, moving forward everything. I mean, think about it 2001, I already have the ad TV on my mobile and I could buy, you know, cans, drinks, food, whatever, in those bending machines with the mobile, like, you know, just pushing those things inside he, the machine and getting it on my monthly bill and pulling it from the machine. And we're talking about what 20, 20, 20 years ago? 20 years
Yoni Mazor: (14:40)
Yeah. Got it. So we're saying that it was tartar contrast for you, you know coming from media, especially, which is you know behind especially 20 years ago was even more behind to, into Japan. And so propelling a few hundred years into the future. It's quite a change quite a boom.
Talor Ofer: (14:56)
Yeah, it's a boom. And then, you know, I realized that you know, Asia is my theme cause enjoyed every second of the three-pluses years. 2001, I got back to Israel. Eventually, lately, I had to see my family again and I really
Yoni Mazor: (15:11)
Three years you haven't even visited Israel. You just stay there three years consecutive doing business. And you said you had stores or was this outside stores, indoor stores, both. How many stores?
Talor Ofer: (15:21)
Indoor and outdoor, mostly indoor. We had 21 of them, three partners and yeah, it was quite, quite a nice operation, like yeah, quite a lot of money. That's what I can tell you. We did like crazy money there, which I mean, back in those days, the money was not related to the efforts you put in the business. It was ridiculous. Like you could work four, five hours a day or even less, and you would do so much money that you wouldn't even care working another or two hours or not. That's how it was, especially, you know, 21, 22, 23 years old as I was, you only know how to appreciative I thought back in those days that this is like, this is life, you know, that's how it is. You work with that's
Yoni Mazor: (16:04)
That’s business. Business just works this way
Talor Ofer: (16:05)
Yeah. And everything is easy. And you do your bunch of money, you know, every day, like boxes of money and everything is cool. But o, obviously t's not.
Yoni Mazor: (16:15)
I mean, yeah. You'll take us to the other side of the stain dry, but 2001 you call back to Israel and what happened just to visit
Talor Ofer: (16:22)
I just came to visit and then, I realized that it's, you know, too hard for me to stay at the same place, especially in Israel. Cause you know, after so many years, no, I mean three and a half years I outside it felt like, you know, wrong for me to stay in Israel and I didn't know what really to do next, but I kind of realized that I wanna go on with trade again. So yeah. I just, I mean, I went, flew back to Thailand. I was searching for opportunities.
Yoni Mazor: (16:47)
Hold on, let me get this share. When you left Japan and you sold you are, you, you closed the business. What was the dynamic of the actual operation?
Talor Ofer: (16:53)
I sold my share. Yeah
Yoni Mazor: (16:55)
Yeah. Okay. So a new page. Yeah. A new page. You went to Israel I said, you let me go. ack to.
Talor Ofer: (17:01)
I mean I still had my, I still had my contacts even today. I still have some contacts from Japan left from those days. Good contacts, but you know, just contacts yeah, got it for my share. And I was done with the business there. And yeah, I mean, when I got back to Israel and I flew to Thailand again, back and forth, I realized that you know, something is missing in my base. So I went to college, I realized that I want, to learn, and being in college for a year, taught me that life is a better cDo young. Do you know? I mean, I'm not saying it from, you know, from the bad aspect, but or from, you know, point of view, that's only my point of view. That's what I'm saying. It's only my point of view. It's not necessarily the right thing for everyone.
Yoni Mazor: (17:43)
So which year did you go? You went for one year for university or college, whicwereears was that?
Talor Ofer: (17:47)
That was 2002 until the end of it like 2003. I was,
Yoni Mazor: (17:54)
So for a year, a year plus you're kind of moving from Israel to As, it. Also, hit school, realized the school of life, the school of life, the school of the hard knocks as some call it that's the best university and education for you.
Talor Ofer: (18:05)
Right. And I, during that, those days, I mean, I was still doing business locally in Israel. The good bus wellsomehowsome how do you call it money exchange and stuff like that.
Yoni Mazor: (18:19)
Foreign Currency. Fx
Talor Ofer: (18:20)
Foreign currency. Yeah, exactly. But locally
Yoni Mazor: (18:23)
TradAsah. As you said, the word trade, the keyword word for you is tr, ade, sell selling. Yeah.
Talor Ofer: (18:27)
Trying to be close to the money. With, again, with friends from Japan those days. But yeah, I mean, I learned one of the courses and it was interesting for me, it was statistics and my father originally was a math teacher when he started his you know when he was young and I found myself teaching afternoon students there're learning with me for paying, for money, teaching the em statistic. And then I realized like, all right, I'm good at that. I should go on. But thonrom the other hand, it's so boring and it's so, you know, like not giving me what want. Cause whatly want is to know what happens in real life. Not in theory and that wasn't there. So that's why, yeah. Those are the reason why I kind of quit. Not kind of but I quit later on yeaafterwardrds, I started to, I went back to, to college. I'm still learning actually for my first degree. It's been like 20 years that I'm doing my first degree in taking.
Yoni Mazor: (19:24)
Yeah. It's all good. Yeah. Life is all about learning
Talor Ofer: (19:26)
Yeah, exactly. It's for fun. It's for education. It's not, you know, not for the career or something. Anyway, 2003. No, end of 2002, I flew to Spain for a couple of months. Cause I realized that I'm able to do a good businetherewithith, again, people that I knew from Japan and I started selling in south Spain started selling again, bags, wallets, accessories, stuff like that to local stores. And just to mention, you know, going back to Japan, I learned the language from the street and now I had to learn another language because you know, Spain. So I speak quite good Japanese. My Spanish is quite bad, especially not using it for so long. And you know, I mean I've only been there for like whatever seven, eight months, not more than that. So,
Yoni Mazor: (20:18)
Which part of Spain by the way?
Talor Ofer: (20:20)
southern, south Spain. I was living in Bernalillo Madana, a small city on the beach.
Yoni Mazor: (20:25)
Is that by the beach area, right?
Talor Ofer: (20:26)
Yeah. It's just near the sea. I could see the sea from my window, which was terrific. But I was working on the coast of DSolsol, which is like the whole, you know the whole beach to beach, south side of Spain up till Gibraltar and everything. Anyway when I was working then I was, ly importing from China and I realized that you know, I started to think thasike the real goal, the real thing is in China, not in here, cause what I'm doing here, I'm selling, but you know and I have kind of a limit because I could sell to this amount of stores I could expand to the south to north Spain to middle Spain, Barcelona, Madrid, whatever. But I realized that in that the real thing is happening in China because you know, so many factories and so many options and so many ways to change the products and everything. And if you are, you know, near that, it's different when it's like, you know controlled like from overseas.
Yoni Mazor: (21:27)
Yeah. You touch. You said you wanna be close to the money. Well, this e-money is usually raised at the source. So sourcing and manufacturing, that' the money starts. And you realize that's where the source is. That's where you need to be. And that I guess, that drew you to your next station. Yeah.
Talor Ofer: (21:41)
Right. So the next station, I mean, I flew to Spain to China just to make sure that I have the sources and everything. Planning planned for a month. I stayed there a than it more than seven years and I fell this
Yoni Mazor: (21The The year
Year was that, that was already 2003 or four.
Talor Ofer: (21:58)
This was 2003 and yeah,
Yoni Mazor: (22:02)
China and boom hit it for seven y way to 2010.
Talor Ofer: (22:05)
Right. Cause exactly because a lot of stuff happened in China. Well, first of all, I started to understand what's happening in real, you know, real business, big business factories, manufacturing, big quantities. You know, the first time I remember it, I walked into a factory asking them guys, I wanna produce bags. So the first question was, what's your quantity? And I was like, mate, they don't even, you know, nothing polite in here. I mean, what's happening quantity, but the second we haven't spoken, you don't know my name, quantity. That's all they asked me. And I was like, I'm gonna make a thousand bags at least. And they were like, sir, we don't bake those or that kind of orders. And I was like, oh my God, I'm living in a dream. I'm not on this planet. It's like a thousand bags is nothing for them. What's happening here. Right. Anyway,
Yoni Mazor: (22:45)
The source, maybe the source,
Talor Ofer: (22:46)
Exactly. They work volume anyway. Not that you can't order such quantity in China, but back in those days and the place that I specifically been to anyways, I met a guy, a very interesting guy. I'm still in touch with him, very close touch, very good relationship. And this guy was in the business for already, I don't know, 20, 30 years. And he identified my strong size and I identified him and anyway, we got connected and he was selling to Walmart. So together with him, I started working and selling to Walmart, producing for them. CMT. If peoplelistenstens to that know what is CMT, like cost making, trimming, you know, you get the fabric from them and everything. You just produce the t in the factory for them. We went also and produced for BCBG and Maxazaria. If people know that name, we also did 95% o, the Darion James, which is what's her name? Beyoncé’s denim line. It's quite bad today, her line. But back in those days, it was a hit, like quantities ally insInsanensane.
Yoni Mazor: (23:55)
Say bad, I mean, the volume is not as big or…
Talor Ofer: (23:58)
yeah. The volume went down. The whole line went down. I don't know why, but anyway, it's not, I'm not related to that for years by now.
Yoni Mazor: (24:05)
Yeah. But let me get this straight. So 2003, when you hit China which region? which area? what was the story there?
Talor Ofer: (24:10),
Well I hated, I h Guangzhou because I knew that my products are coming from there. So that's where I went. Might have been a mistake. I could have been going to Shanghai having a little bit easier life cause Shanghai is cleaner and nicer, more Westernized.
Yoni Mazor: (24Finer fine. Yeah,
Talor Ofer: (24:27)
Exactly. But that was, you know, that was my luck. So I ended up in, in Guangzhou, wasn't easy in terms of living and, you know, lifestyle and everything. But then again, it's a matter of, you know, what you expect
Yoni Mazor: (24:38)
Yeah. Now you visit Guangzhou, in 10, 15 years. It made a boom remarkable progress. It's just it's like New York, you know, it's full of people.
Talor Ofer: (24:46)
I haven't seen that,
Yoni Mazor: (24:49)
But I had been there in 2017 last time. And it was gorgeous. It was top of the line. Yeah. The towers of beautiful. I think it was four seasons hotel. It was like phenomenal, phenomenal, phenomenal. It was skyscrapers everywhere. Bridges. It was pretty clean. So it was a good experience
Talor Ofer: (25:03)
Quite different. Quite different. Totally.
Yoni Mazor: (25:05)
Yeah. Got it. So you hit it Guangzhou area, factories, sourcing, MOQ, MCT, Walmart, brands, this that was kind of the summary of the seven years or what was the evolution?
Talor Ofer: (25:19)
Yeah, aa mong few things that I did. I also established my brand in Canada. That was electric item brands. I was brave enough to take a partner in Canada and we managed to sell Costco. And that's where I kind of understood that you know, Hey, I'm working with Costco, I'm working with Walmart. Mainly I'm working like with, you know, physical stores. That's what I do. I don't, you know, and I've seen, it was the beginning, even before the beginning g of the movement of vendors going to the online platform. So you had the beginning of Alibaba, you had made in China, which I even knew the owner and everything, but they were going down in Alibaba, going up,
Yoni Mazor: (25:59)
what's been in China, was the website for e-commerce.
Talor Ofer: (26:02)
Yeah, Used to be, they started with Ali Alibaba with the same platform and Alibaba went to the place you know in today. While Made in China just went down and down, they had. Their platform wasn't good. Anyway so yeah, people were selling it on Alibaba, they were selling retail, like consumer wise on eBay. And then, you know, the Amazon thing existing, but you start, you started to hear about it. You started, there was something in the era, you know, I heard here and there, I knew the name, but that's it. But anyway, I understood like this is my thing. Retail is my thing. So I'm staying here and there is a say in business in life in general, if you do something, go on and do the same thing, make it different and different. And until you are an expert at what you do, and that's what you do rather than spreading all over the place and not, not gaining anything. So anyway, I went on with the physical stores and everything, and I stained on 2010. Oh, by the,e way small issue, small thing, 2007, I went into the shoe.
Yoni Mazor: (27:09)
Show me a Jewish synagogue argument.
Talor Ofer: (27:11)
Right. Yeah. The Jewish synagogue. Sorry. And I just met my wife there. So the same day I met her, we went to drink a cup of tea in my house, litera ally cup of tea. And I told her, you know, I looked when they say
Yoni Mazor: (27:26)
Tea in China, in Guangzhou, do you mean the regular tea o.the.
Talor Ofer: (27:29)
No. The one I brought from Israel, the one I brought from, from Israel,
Yoni Mazor: (27:31)
I the Chinese tea. They bring the do. Oh, I love it. The whole ceremony or the heated. Oh, I love it. I think it's called what's it called? The plate. Ths the whole plate.
Talor Ofer: (27:43)
Then, I don't know. My Chinese is quite bad. I mean, I know Chinese a little bit, but not that far anyway. I mean, I love the cold Japanese green tea, but not the Chinese one. The Chinese make me feel like I'm stoned or something. I don't know
Yoni Mazor: (27:57)
No, that's great. I love it. It's natural energy. Yeah. I can have it all day long. okay. So 2007, you go to synagogue. I guess you met yourntly, cause you guys started with tea, and what happened with the tea?
Talor Ofer: (28:11)
So at the end of the tea, I just told her we'll talk later tomorrow or whatever, but I just wanna tell you that I have something to tell you, but I'll tell you in a week from now and afterwardwards, I offered her. So,
Yoni Mazor: (28:23)
Wow. Just like, that you saw her a week later like you realize that that's it? Yeah. That's the one.
Talor Ofer: (28:27)
Yeah. Yeah. That's great. Two months, two moafterwardwards, which was planned to be three wafterwardwards. But anyway, two moafterwardwards, we were already been married until today
Yoni Mazor: (28:35)
And you got married in China or Israel?
Talor Ofer: (28:38)
We wanted to get married in China, but our families, they were like, Hey, are you serious? Now we wanna see you in your marriage. So yeah. That's why it took two months at otherwise it would take three, three weeks.
Yoni Mazor: (28:47)
Wow. You got, when you know something, you do it, that's it? No time-wastingsting. It's pretty impressive.
Talor Ofer: (28:51)
Yeah. It's just happening to happen. It's just, I mean, it doesn't happen like that all the time, but you know, when things like happenppens, like I knew it. I mean I, the minute I saw her, I knew like, this is like,
Yoni Mazor: (29:02)
Oh, she's listening and appreciating its good stuff. Okay.
Talor Ofer: (29:05)
I am telling her that every day.
Yoni Mazor: (29:08)
That's great. Good romance. You're keeping the romance going. So, okay. So 2010, it seems like there's a next station or shift in your evolution. So take us there.
Talor Ofer: (29:13)
Exactly. So we went back to Israel in 2010, we were a little bit fed up. If not a lot from China we went back to Israel
Yoni Mazor: (29:23)ally I do, I apologize. I wanna jump into China. You seem fed up because you tasted so many, right? You tasted India, Japan, Spain, China, and China seems, to be for now, the story shows the longest time, about seven years. So in a nutshell what's your pressure with the culture where it's going, where, you know, you probably also severely a little point on China. Make your point.
Talor Ofer: (29:48)
My point on China, I think they are not going to control the world. But they
already are controlling the world. Cause it's not only production and everything. I mean, you could see even back at 2003 and four, you could see how they, I mean, I could see how they think and how they, how they do. They weren't asking me questions about my life, about my town. They were asking me questions that were leading to the point of who can they invest in something in Israel or can they invest something in the states, that was the point where they were interested at. And if you look at it,
Yoni Mazor: (30:25)
So they are thinking globally. So they made advancements obviously in the 70s, they backward words countries, so to speak and then they lived forward when they kind of opened up to the world, they made tremendous progress in 30, 40 years. And now they're in a position where what's out there in the world we can invest in. Yeah. So that,
Talor Ofer: (30:46)
Exactly, exactly. And, and I mean, later on, you've seen it, I mean, that was in the micro, but in the macro, you could see that a lot of Chinese can see today. A lot of Chinese companies are investing worldwide and we don't know where it's gonna, it's gonna go, but an event, rally it's giving them a lot of power. And I think they're yeah, I think they're the biggest empire right now in the world. That's, that's how I see it. I mean
Yoni Mazor: (01:10)
And what dodo you when you said we got fed up of China in seven years, just because, you know, culture, you miss home kind of homesick or other elements?
Talor Ofer: (01:17)
Not only homesick, but I mean, back in those days, for me, at least it was hard to live there. I mean, the city wasn't clean and the people, I mean, I don't wanna say, you know, stuff that I shouldn't, but anyway it's the right. I mean, the environment in Guangzhou, because it's a business environment and it's been like that for 500 years since the Yemen people came and wanted to buy ceramic. And that's why called Hina because China is ceramic and everything. Anyway, since then it became litradingtrade play ace, trade city. And it's so, you know, trade vibe, there was a little bit, not a little bit, but quite too much for me and my wife in terms of air pollution, in terms of, you know, it's only business all the time. There's no, there's no life. There's no like, you know, going out, out enjoying and stuff like that.
Yoni Mazor: (32:01)
Yeah. Got it. Got it. Okay make sense
Talor Ofer: (32:05)
It's a like working camp, it felt like a working camp.
Yoni Mazor: (32:07)
It's like a business army. It's like, you're in the army now in the business world. It's like, you're the property of the trade, you know, everybody, the whole town, mega place. Got it. So makes sense. You hit the home base in 2010 and are okay. Take us there.
Talor Ofer: (32:22)
And then I started, you know I, I joined a couple of businesses and one of them, which was the major one, was a company in New York, which I joined them and became an alike partner with them. And they were selling, we were selling tech, accessories, like wearable tech, accessories and well, at our peak, 2015, 16, we were selling to approximately 60 or more different retailers, which was crazy. We were selling to American Eagle, Macy's Bloomingdale, urban outfitter, free people, William Sonoma, you name it like you just name it. So anyway, I like, you know, that as a very good, I would call it second trade degree for me, learning not only how to work with those guys, but how to work with them in a higher level and not only how to work with Walmart or Costco, that's in, like, I knew how to work.
Talor Ofer: (33:19)
I still think I know how to work with like a bunch of them because I started to realize what is retail, you know, what's happening in retail, which is gonna be our next topic. Like, how do you work with them? What do they, what do they expect from you? How do they make the definition? Which is, you know, the most CRI critical thing if to take your product or to say forget it, you know, which is like the biggest question and the biggest thing that you want to fall under. Yes. Because that's what brings the business. So anyway, I was working that way for approximately seven years we did a great job. We had a great office in New York, but it started to go down because a lot of competition came in. But not only that we've been very special with our designs that nobody could copy us. They nobody could copy us. We were competing
Yoni Mazor: (34:04)
Because when some sort of patterns design.
Talor Ofer: (34:09)
No, because we did crazy designs and the finishing we did on the product was something that people couldn't beat. We were working like days and nights to bring something like crazy stuff we did. For instance, I assume, you know, Kate spade, so we did Kate spade, paired their bags. We did the same designs of the bags on our accessories, like power banks and speakers and so on. Like, we took the same patterns and did it, and then the quality was something that usually
Yoni Mazor: (34:38)
Didthinkought about a license here? you did with the license, or just, you took inspiration from other designs? It made all these undesignsesign that
Talor Ofer: (34:44)
It was, it was co-branding, it wasn't licensing. You don't need licensing when you sell them directly, because they're the only ones who scheme them. And that's part of the purchase orders and contracts that you sign.
Yoni Mazor: (34:56)
No, let me understand. So how do you work with Kate spade? For example, what was that? Co-branding? How do you mean,
Talor Ofer: (35:00)
I mean, their brand, their brand, logo, and everything was there with their patterns and everything, but our company's logo was also there on the bottom. This is co-branding, like
Yoni Mazor: (05:13)
Co accessory. Got it. Okay. Got it.
Talor Ofer: (35:16)
We did the same thing by the way, with the Kenneth call, if you know them. Sure. And also anthropology and free people. Yeah.
Yoni Mazor: (35:27)
Got it. So you a have relationship with all these. Got it. So have all these relationships with all these brands, unique patterns, unique designs. It's very hard to mimic it. And if you are, it's a knockoff, that's an issue. So you have to a have competitive edge on
Talor Ofer: (35You'reou're assigned that you cannot sell even one piece out of it, even a sample before you do the simple before you ship it, you have to get authorized. It's not a license, license a little bit different, but yeah. You have to get authoreveryevery step in the process because of this sensitivity, you know, big brands, big names. Yeah.
Yoni Mazor: (35:57)
Yeah OK. So business started to down, I mean, or started kind of relaxing because of competition. What else?
Talor Ofer: (36:03)
I quitted the business. I didn't sell my part. I just quit. I left everything to the partner. And I mean, I have been in touch,
Yoni Mazor: (36:13)
But let me ask you this, besides the fact that competition came in, was there another reason business started to decline or that was the main reason?
Talor Ofer: (36:19)
Yeah, because this particular line of products was not so exciting anymore in 2017. Cause you know, new stuff came in new technologies in terms of technology, we knew that we don't have enough strength with both me and the other guy partner
Yoni Mazor: (36:37)
With the wearable accessorDo you. You mean? Right. Cause that was kind of your specialty.
Talor Ofer: (36:40)
Right, So we didn't have, we've seen, we understood that if people are producing rings on, you know, literally ring that are containing Bluetooth devices inside, then you know, we're gonna be out of the game very soon. So we realized that any have. I been in touch with a couple of Amazon sellers back here in Israel. And when that happened, they approached saying, Hey, Talor we know where you understand what is retail and how to sell there. And we have, you ka know, a bunch of products we have so-called sort of branding and everything. But we dally know where to start, how to approach all these retailers. Cause you know, if we sell online, we wanna sell offline as well. They didn't know the numbers. But the numbers, even if until today is like more than almost 90% of the products that are being sold in the states still, even now when it's COVID times and everything are being sold in the retail space, like in physical stores, which is like a little bit shocking to hear this, this number.
And it's like, it's on Google. You can, you can search for that. Like it's not numbers that I brought. And, and, and I knew that number. And when I told them that number, they were like, what are we selling at 10%? I said, guys, you're not even selling seven-lightweight because Amazon is the biggest the online, but they're the alone there. So yeah, you're selling it the best day at a good day. You're selling to 10% potential. So you have nine times potential than what you do right now. And they were like, wow. Anyway, I started, you know, to help brands to go inside retail. And then it became coached I started to do coaching, coaching people how to do? what do you need to do? How do you approach these people? What do you need before you approach them?
What do you need to know? What's the informathat'shat's happening? Cause it's the like same thing with Amazon. It's a language, you know, if I wanted to sell on Amazon, which I don't and I won't probably not in this life, I would, you know, I would go to someone who knows what Amazon, eh, teach me, PPC, teach me, hijacking, teach everything. And let me go, you know, at the fast way, rather than spending two, three years of my life and not getting results. And that's the same thing did but from the retail aspect. So the last year or so I got a little bit tired from coaching because when you coach, obviously you're, you know, putting a lot of energy into that coaching and everything. And at the end of the day, the students are succeeding and doing whatever they do. But you're not part of it. You are part of it. You're not part of, of, you know, close to the money.
Yoni Mazor: (39:07)
So also the source. Yeah. You won’t step remove from another source. Yeah.
Talor Ofer: (39:11)
Right. Again, I took, yeah. I took a step back. So anyway, with that being understood on my end and with another, like very important sentence or idea that I had, I had heard, I heard from, from a friend in the industry, he told me something, you know, he said, you know what, Taylor, you think that people want your information and they do, but they don't want to learn, especially not their online vendors. They don't want to learn; they want things to be done. So I was like, oh my God, I'm doing the wrong thing. I shoulda service. Now, if I do a service, which is what I do today, a solution. That's
Yoni Mazor: (39:51)
Awesome. But solve this they see the opportunity. They want a piece of it instead of doing it, just solve it for them, just do it for them or with them.
Talor Ofer: (39:59)
Exactly. I do that for them. But then, I mean, I've been looking backward and thinking and seeing that if I do so, but when I, okay, I'll, I'll start again. When I was loobackwardwards, I saw that the biggest money that I've seen was not from coaching obviously, and not from anything else, but from being involved in the sales. And this is what I love most. So I'll do like, I decided, and that's what I do today that I'm gonna do it as a service. I will offer it as a service, you know, obviously for a certain amount. And then when the service is done, like when the brand and the service is written ready service, when the service is done, like when the brand is written ready, and we'll talk about the six points of how to make written ready when it's done and ready, then I am offering myself as a sales agent. Like I'm working from percentage. If I sell, I get a percentage. If I don't, I don't get, okay. So I have a motivation to sell it. Cause I wanna see the percentage. And that's where the money is for, for me at least. And it’s a just percentage. So obviously the money is there also main my for, for the brands that are working in the written space, not only with me, you know, a lot of brands are working with the written, the written space.
Yoni Mazor: (41:11)
Got it. So I wanna, I wanna touch the six points. Cause I think this might be extremely valuable for anybody out there listening. So take us to the six points that would help, I guess, online sellers become, you know, retail-ready or traditional or offline retail ready, which is, as you mentioned, could be a huge potential. You cado nnot extra business or more or beyond. So take us there.
Talor Ofer: (41:30)
You got it. So the main thing is to think and that's where I started to build the six points from, cause I came with the same issues all the time, again and again. And I started to think, okay, how am I solving all the problems in minimum levels and minimum of effort and with maximum results. So I was like, all right, I have to think about what the buyer is thinking or the GMO or the sourcing manager, whatever title it is, but what the retailer is thinking about, what he's seeing. So the first thing I wanted to do, that's the first point, not necessarily in that order, buis market research. And when I'm saying market research, it's different om market research that you know, online sellers are doing. Cause I'm not looking for a product here. I'm not looking to see what is selling or not.
I know the product, the product is what I sell, right? What the seller that works witsells sell, for instance, if a seller that works witise are selling whatever earbuds, then I'm looking for earbuds. But then the market research has the o be the focus, not on what's happening on the online platforms because this is not an indication I have to know what's happening in the physical stores. Now there's a lot of tricks and ways how to do so without moving you’re, whatever a step, you know, from the chair, you can do everything on your computer and it'll do it. Took some time for me to learn how to do it, but ially doable. You don't have to fly in whatever, you know, go physically to stores or send someone for you. You can find out you're
Yoni Mazor: (43:01)
There areere's data dedicated databases where usually do data analytics on the situation of products and categories and brick and mortar stores and do the market research. That's the first point. What's the second?
Talor Ofer: (43The secondecond point is branding. And that the branding is divided into two inner points. So the first branding thing is the website. When a buyer or when a buyer looks at your website as a brand, and he can us they identify if you're an online seller or Amazon seller, typically in seconds, in seconds. Just think about those five stars, yellow stars from Amazon, that people are putting on their website, or think about the feedbacks from Amazon that are putting on your web. Now mate, the website is yours. This is not Amazon. This is your, this is your house. This is your room. This is your place. This is your business. You don't have to show it as it was as if it was Amazon. Anyway, website, there’s a lot of branding topics going into the website, the second thing would be which is the third, act,ually the catalog, which is also falling under the branding section ccataloglogue, you know, tcataloglogue, thea re's book.
Look, there's a teaser deck. There are different ways to present your line of products, but a good catalog, not word, not Excel, not PPTX, preferably PDF put anyway, a good catalog making the other side, looking at it like this. Wow. I wanna see more. Okay. In one sentence, if I open as a buyer, a catalog, and the first three or four or even eight pages are only telling about the company and what they did before and where are they coming from? And the brother was flying to New Zealand. He found those great amber stones and he thought, forget it. Nobody wants to hear stories. They want right, exactly to the point. And they wanna see something that they haven't seen before. Even if it's a common product, just a matter of, you know, how you design it and how you present it. So that's the third thing, the things thing, which you have to refer to and that's one of the big things in retail is the packaging think about it. You know, the majority of the packaging that people use on Amazon or online channels is a like polybag or simple box because nobody sees it, right? You sell it, you sell the picture, you sell the listing, you sell whatever images out there. And the product comes in, you know, comes with the courier and that's it. Nobody cares about packaging, wholly different in retail because the packaging is what is selling the packaging in retail in one sentence, the packaging on the retail side is your Amazon front picture. So, but there's a lot of things invoin lved how to make it correct and so on. Cause it depends. It's gonnhung hang, it's gonna be on the floor. It's gonna be on the shelf. It's gonna be stuck and so on. And so on. Last thing not last,
Yoni Mazor: (45:40)
Two more, two more,
Talor Ofer: (45:41)
Two more. So obviously another thing that you have to keep in mind is pricing. Cause when you approach, you know, retailers and you know, your MSRP, your retail price, customer price, you have to know what's gonna be the whole surprise. Now the whole surprise, if you sell to bed, bath, and beyond, for instance, would be half 50% off your MSRP. Cause that's how they work
Yoni Mazor: (45:58).
Keystone. Yeah. Keystone. Yeah.
Talor Ofer: (46:01)
Yeah. But then if you look at Neiman Marcus, for instance, they work on an IMU of 60%. So that brings you to around 37 to 40% of your MSRP.
Yoni Mazor: (46:13)
What's IU, what's the acronym mean?
Talor Ofer: (46:16)
It's, I forgot that, but's a mark-up. The mark-up.
Yoni Mazor: (46:20)
Inventory mark-up. Yeah, yeah. Or something like that.
Talor Ofer: (46:22)
Inventory Mark-up. Yeah. So anyway, that's how they work. And if you look at PJ, PJ would buy half of your benchmark wholesale price. Meaning if you sell a hundred dollars MSRP, they would expect to buy it for $25 PJ Marx. But again, you have volume. So anyway, pricing is something that you have to prepare upfront because you're not gonna wait until someone
Yoni Mazor: (46:42)
Yeah. Tiered, tiered. Yeah. Different product lines for each kind of I guess retailer and tier. And it's the tier differently. It's already built, you know, turn-key for them. So they, you speak the same language. Exactly. Cause you’re saying pricing for different retailers. It's kind of different language in a way,
Talor Ofer: (46:57)
Right. Even if you're not ready, but if they ask you for price and you're quoting the wrong price to one of the retailers, you Lose it.
Yoni Mazor: (47:04)
Exactly. Last whole arrangement. Okay. The last thing is?
Talor Ofer: (47:08)
The last thing is brief. I call it brief. The main, thing with the brief is like, how do I present myself in 5, 6, 7 sentences, email, LinkedIn, whatever it is. And, if you have seven lines to define yourself or 10 lines to define yourself in an email, you have to think about how not to make the people bored and how to make it even shorter in LinkedIn. Because if you get those, you know, huge messages on LinkedIn, you're like, oh man, I'm gonna sleep. I'm gonna go sleep. No, you wanna send two sentences and you want a gift, a small gift to be running on the message box and getting their attention. So these things are being implemented into the brief side, which is like differ from a platform to platform. But it's something that you have to have on hand. And this is very crucial. Those are the so six points in like very, very general Idea.
Yoni Mazor: (47:57)
Yeah. Okay. So let's recap the six points. So number one is?
Talor Ofer: (48:02)
Market research, pricing, website, catalog,
Yoni Mazor: (48:07)
You call it, you call it branding. Yeah. You call it pricing and branding, which is inside. And then you said packaging,
Talor Ofer: (48:13)
Yoni Mazor: (48:15)
Packaging and pricing. And the last thing was brief. Yeah. Got it. Yeah. Okay. Very, very cool. All right. So this is where you are today. This is your power. This is your energy. This is your focus. The transition from you know, online to offline is based on these six fundamentals. Exactly. And great. So I want kind of thank you so much. It's been a crazy wild, and interesting ride for me to experience. So I wanna package this story, see what we got so far. Right. So born and raised in Israel and move moved all around, graduate in good your high school years and then 1995 to 1998. You did your military service. You left and around 1999 you went out for a trip you started in Southeast Asia, and then you had an opportunity to be in Japan.
You opened your businesses 21 and retail shops for about three years. Then 2002, you went back home a little bit to Asia again and then a little bit to Spain again, around 2003, you already hit China Guangzhou area. You stayed there for seven years. You got extensive experience with sourcing manufacturing in global trade and then 2010 until 2017, along the way, got married around 2007, but 2010, you went back to Israel from 2010, 2017. You know, we've evolved in, you know apparel you know electronics apparel wearable technology, I guess. And then you know, mostly selling to 60 plus retailers here in the United States at a New York office and then 2017, you transitioned to, you know, supporting sellers you know, online sellers into offline mainly on the coaching side.
And then three years after around 2020, when the COVID hit, you kind of evolve into partnering with the sellers who's out there is interesting to put themselves offline. You take the six fundamentals, you set it all up, set in motion. You basically, you become their agent and operator and you're you know, strictly motivated by sales. If no sales, you get zero, all the efforts are new, but if you do generate it you always be focused on generating it because you have you know, an important stake in it. That's kind of the dynamics that you find yourself today you know, after all these years. So this was a kind of a good summer or what happened?
Talor Ofer: (50:30)
Yeah. It is just too precise the last point. I mean, when I do the written ready service at first, I do like, there's a link that I will share and everything. I do like I'm looking at the line at the products and everything, and I'm thinking, and I'm checking and I'm testing if it is, there's like potential in the retail side. Cause if there's none, I wouldn't,
Yoni Mazor: (50:47)
Yeah. That's the first step. The market research, if market research says, yes, you go for it.
Talor Ofer: (50:51)
All these six points are being like, this is a service that I sell afterward. The second part, which is my interesting part, is to become a rep. So if you know, a company says, all right, we are ready, ready, thank you so much. We're gonna go ahead and, and sell ourselves. That's fine, but that's, you know, an option for my side and that's preferable on my end at least. But yeah just,
Yoni Mazor: (51:10)
That makes sense. So if after they graduate, they're free to fly on their own, but if they want a partner along the way they can partner with you, I think it's a very, very good, useful combination where everybody's always uncomfortable with their decisions. I think that's very, very good and very,
Talor Ofer: (51:24)
But even, even if they don't proceed with me as a rep, I would always open like a couple of doors for them so they can get, you know, a kick-start of, you know, things getting moving with. And I'm talking about introducing stuff like, you know, Costco, PJ, the big guys, so it's valuable.
Yoni Mazor: (51:37)
That's great. I love that. Okay. So that's kind of the story so far. I wanna kind of finish up with two points. We've gotta do a couple of bits quickly than usual. And the first point is if somebody wants to reach out and discover more and connect with you, where can they find you? And the last thing will be is what is your message of hope and inspiration for entrepreneurs listening out there?
Talor Ofer: (11:56)
Don't be afraid, go and sell on other platforms with me, with others, with yourself. It doesn't matter. There are so many platforms I didn't even speak about it today. TV segments, I'm selling to subscription boxes.com. You know, macy's.com, samclub.com, all these channels. There are so many things out there to do. Don't get stuck, you know, and put all your eggs in one basket called Amazon or whatever, just, you know, free your mind and build your brand. This is the big thing here. Build your brand.
Yoni Mazor: (52:24)
Look at the global show for your mind, build your brand. And I think globally and put myself wherever I can. Got it. And where can people find you if they wanna connect?
Talor Ofer: (52:33)
Well, www.retail-empire.com. There's a contact us. You can reach me out very easily, and there's also a link for the form for the written ready service, which we'll share with you. Yeah. Then I also, Talor Ofer on Facebook. Very easy to reach out. Yeah.
Yoni Mazor: (52:50)
Awesome. Beautiful. Okay, Taylor, thank you so much. I enjoy it very, very much and learned a lot. I hope everybody else enjoyed staying safe and healthy everybody. So next time,
Talor Ofer: (53:00)
Thank you so much. And thank you for having me. And I think you are a brilliant guy. Thank you so much.
Yoni Mazor: (53:06)
Thank you so much. Take care, everybody.