Fender Europe fined £4.5m for preventing online discounts

Discussion in 'Telecaster Discussion Forum' started by Lefty Addams, Jan 22, 2020.

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  1. Lefty Addams

    Lefty Addams Tele-Afflicted

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    Guitar maker Fender has been fined £4.5m for illegally preventing online discounts on its products in the UK.

    Fender Europe required sellers to set a minimum online price, breaking competition rules, the Competition and Markets Authority said.

    This meant that customers could not shop around for the lowest price, the regulator said.

    Fender said it cooperated with the investigation and has changed its practices.

    The company, founded in California in 1946, is famous for its guitars, which have been the choice of musicians ranging from Eric Clapton to Jimi Hendrix and David Gilmour.

    [​IMG]Image copyrightDOUG MCKENZIE
    Image captionJimi Hendrix was one influential player to have used Fender guitars
    The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) said its investigation concerned conduct between 2013 and 2018,

    The fine is the largest penalty the regulator has ever handed down for such behaviour. It follows a £3.7m penalty for keyboard maker Casio Electronics for similar practices.

    "It is absolutely essential that companies do not prevent people from being able to shop around to buy their products at the best possible price," said Andrea Coscelli, the CMA chief executive.

    "This is especially important for expensive and popular items like guitars, and so Fender's actions could have had a big impact on customers."

    Guitars account for a "significant" part of the UK's £440m in total instrument sales - 40% of which take place online, the regulator said.

    Those statistics make it "even more important that musicians have access to competitive prices online," the regulator said.

    A Fender Europe spokesman said: "As a result of the investigation, we have taken additional steps to enhance our compliance procedures and our new EMEA executive team will continue to rigorously monitor the business' adherence to antitrust and competition laws."

    Fender Europe, based in West Sussex, was fined £25,000 in March after an employee hid notebooks related to the CMA investigation.

    That employee no longer works for the company.


    Interesting....
     
  2. Nubs

    Nubs Friend of Leo's

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    As a lefty, you know that doesn't matter to us anyways :p
     
  3. BigDaddyLH

    BigDaddyLH Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    Meanwhile, in North America :mad:
     
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  4. kbold

    kbold Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

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    AFAIK they do the same in Australia.
     
  5. rob2

    rob2 Tele-Holic

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    THe CMA?.....where were these guys when Arbiter and Rosetti had a monopoly on Fender and Gibson respectively in the UK and Ireland?:rolleyes:.....those were the dark ages of prices.....and a total lack of choice,spare parts,service etc.....its a golden age for guitars IMHO,disappointing to see the gouging still goes on but I suppose thats corporate nature....:twisted:
     
  6. Apache Snow

    Apache Snow Tele-Meister

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  7. Apache Snow

    Apache Snow Tele-Meister

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    If I was Fender I would tell them to go pound sand and supped all sales immediately.
     
  8. Fendereedo

    Fendereedo Friend of Leo's

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    (Deleted)
     
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2020
  9. Torz Johnson

    Torz Johnson Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    If I didn't know better, I would think the government was just shaking Fender down. But we all know that governments don't do such things.
     
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  10. tele12

    tele12 Friend of Leo's

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    I'm sure they will find all of the buyers of the price fixed products and divide the fine among them.
     
  11. 8barlouie

    8barlouie Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    Here, they practice Mininum Advertised Pricing or MAP. Not sure what they call it in the UK, but at any rate, it’s illegal over there. Here, it seems to be tolerated if not downright legal. I think it’s ultimately going to be good for the consumer, but bad for the mom and pop shops. The one near me has already dropped Fender because they require their dealers to purchase in numbers that they simply can’t afford.
     
  12. Chunkocaster

    Chunkocaster Poster Extraordinaire

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    I used to shop globally for the best price but someone made that practice fruitless.
    I'd love to be compensated for that. I'm off to the shop to by 40 of the cheapest cigs available for $45 bucks.:rolleyes:
     
  13. TheGoodTexan

    TheGoodTexan Moderator Staff Member Ad Free Member

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    I just locked a thread on the same subject in The Bad Dog. The subject matter is just too political.
     
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