Paying attention until my brain hurts

I’m still focused on PI – and will be until I adjust my infrastructure for the Rubicon changes. It might take me a while.

My previous PI setup had two Alts managing 6 planets each, running on a two day cycle. I balanced the extraction so that I gathered 12,000 units each of Reactive Metals, Precious Metals, Toxic Metals and Chiral Structures, and processed the same number of units into 450 Robotics.

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I did extra bits and bobs with excess capacity, but that was the core of my PI.

The cost of doing business in Empire space was straight forward.

. You paid a 10% Tax to export goods via a Custom Office
. You paid a 5% Tax to import goods via a Custom Office
. You paid a 15% Tax to export goods via the Command Centre

The tax was based on a static value for the various tiers of PI goods. The old values were:

Tier – Type – Old ISK Value
P0 – Basic – 500
P1 – Refined – 9,000
P2 – Special – 70,000
P3 – Advanced – 1,350,000

For simplicity sake assume each cycle I exported 48,000 P0 from extraction planets, imported 48,000 P0 to factory planets, and exported 450 produced P2 units. The cost was:

48,000 x 500 x 10%
+ 48,000 x 500 x 5%
+ 450 x 70,000 x 10%

= 2.4M + 1.2M + 3.15M, or 7.75M ISK in taxes

It fluctuates, but on average over the years I’ve sold my Robotics at around 60K each – so for around 27M ISK. Take away the tax and selling costs, and I made around 19M profit each cycle. If I was diligent this would earn me 3.4B ISK a year profit. I wasn’t diligent.

With Rubicon things have changed. For starters the base value set against the PI goods – for calculating taxes, has dropped:

Tier – Type – Old – New Value
P0 – Basic – 500 – 400
P1 – Refined – 9,000 – 7,200
P2 – Special – 70,000 – 60,000
P3 – Advanced – 1,350,000 – 1,200,000

In addition you can train up a new skilled called Customs Code Expertise. This drops the taxes you pay through Custom’s offices by 10% each rank. I am going to presume the casual PI player will get this to Rank IV. That means the new NPC taxes you pay will be

. 6% Tax to export goods via a Custom Office
. 3% Tax to import goods via a Custom Office
. 15% Tax to export goods via the Command Centre

Now – if I owned the POCO on every planet I used, and set the tax to 0%, my costs will be down.

48,000 x 400 x 6%
+ 48,000 x 400 x 3%
+ 450 x 60,000 x 6%

= 1.152M + 0.576M + 1.620M, or 3.348M in taxes

I’m 4.4M better off, or I would make around 800M extra profit over a diligent year. Score!

But I don’t the POCO on every one of my planets. I am now reliant on using either some Interbus Customs Offices, which seems to charge a flat 17% tax regardless my rank in Customs Code Expertise, the very limited (time and size) 15% taxed export via the Command Centre, or a Player Owned CO with total tax rates (NPC and their own) that so far seem to average between around 11 and 16%.

I am also at the whim of other players. An Interbus Customs office can be replaced at any point in time, and players can change their own tax rates from 0 to 100% as frequently as they want.

I’m now struggling a bit with what to do.  Do I hope / trust the other players will keep their taxes at around the same levels, or do I change my method to only export P1 goods from planets I don’t own the CO on via the expensive – but consistently priced Command Centre export? Even the process of changing from P0 to P1 export really hits the volumes I will produce in the end.

7 thoughts on “Paying attention until my brain hurts

  1. I would consider it a bad business decision and a waste of my time to try and make a profit from POCOs I don’t own. There is too much uncertainty on what my overhead costs will be, i.e. the tax rate charged by other player POCOs. Just ask any entrepreneur in the real world if they would move their business to a state/country where the tax rates can and do change overnight and possibly every night. The answer is an unsurprising, “Hell no.” That’s what New Eden currently has in high-sec. Taking the risk is just asking to lose money to some buffoons who own a lot of battleships but not much else. They can suck hind tit for all I care. I’m done with PI.

    • I understand where you are coming from. I like being self-reliant, but when it comes to PI and POCO’s I’m simply left to hope I’m ignored or not noticed. (It is what my next post is about.)

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