Monday, July 23, 2007

The Fate of AAC Direct / All American Computers

A fellow AAC Direct client found my blog and got in contact with me, so I have learned more about what happened to the fabled, ill-fated AAC Direct / All American Computers (AAC), owned and operated by Kyle Felstein.

The Downfall
In the closing months of AAC, when you purchased a computer, the money you paid wasn't spent on your parts, but the computer that had been built before it. AAC was using each new order to pay for the one before it - they were behind, but it was manageable for a time.

The hardware resellers, however, were not amused; their payments had to wait until the next computer was ordered at AAC. Because of this, they were reticent to send out new equipment to a buyer (AAC) who didn't pay them on time; this delay, in turn, prolonged the build of each computer, which made things worse for both AAC and the resellers expecting payment.

Some venture capitalists became a glimmer of hope; however, negotiations not only fell through, but because the LiquidXS the potential investors had ordered was two months overdue, they threatened to sue AAC for the bill.

The carpet was pulled out from under them rather rapidly after that.

The Fallout
I am not certain, nor was the customer, who had ordered a LiquidXS prior to my PureXS, but apparently Kyle's assets were liable for AAC's debt. This would include his car, his house, bad things. We speculated on that based on what rumors we've found on teh interwebs and a few forums.

A week or so prior to folding their store doors closed; gleaned from a local computer store mentioned in the comments of this blog.

Apparently my PureXS may have been one of the last complete computers built there, if not the last. I can't find anyone who had a full, successful build after mine, in which case I have a bit of a collector's item.

There was at least two computers that went out immediately after mine, and both were shipped incomplete - if debt collectors are after Kyle's personal assets, I'm sure everything in the building was seized. Since Kyle didn't have the parts needed to complete the order, he had the option of leaving it with the store to be seized or shipping it as it was to the customer.

Things went bad quickly after that; Kyle never had a chance to e-mail the customer what happened, so imagine his surprise. This created a bit of a stink online - as the customers couldn't reach anyone at AAC or find any way to contact Kyle.

My Initial Reluctance to Post My Findings
The initial reports came in badly worded English, slathered in vitriolic phrases. All I knew for sure (I checked) was that AAC was indeed dead; I wasn't about to publish what could have been slander without knowing what happened - it has taken this long for the picture to become clear.

The poor unlucky souls whose orders were after mine - they spent money and got an incomplete system back - at best. If I had known AAC was going under I would have gotten a Dell XPS; I wanted the support. Having the complete PureXS in my house, I have no regrets; I've seen Dell XPS's up close to compare the quality and performance and I can deal with one last computer I support, despite having four children.

To the people who were burned for hundreds or thousands of dollars, there is no amount of anger at the service rendered that is unjustified. I would tender to my fellow AAC clientele that it appears AAC tried to hold back the end; their last bid failed, and everyone suffered in the end.

[All My Blogs about AAC Direct / All American Computers]