MD-2017 price fixing

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radiosification
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MD-2017 price fixing

Postby radiosification » 31 May 2017, 09:39

I wrote a blog post last night on price fixing and the MD-2017.
https://goo.gl/ETQBWU
Would be interested to hear everyone's thoughts. Is it illegal?
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Re: MD-2017 price fixing

Postby mountainpenguin » 02 Jun 2017, 08:00

I am wondering about a group buy if its supported by the md-380 tools ! thats a significant "discount"

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Re: MD-2017 price fixing

Postby radiosification » 02 Jun 2017, 09:24

We'll have to wait and see if it is supported by MD-380 tools. I doubt it will be in the short term at least.

A group buy would definitely save a good amount of money, although we have to remember that there would still be shipping and import fees on top of the $110 per radio.
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Re: MD-2017 price fixing

Postby Admiral » 02 Jun 2017, 09:42

It doesn't just look like price fixing, there seems to be an element of exclusive dealer fixing too, I guess there may have been a brown envelope involved? I doubt a group of individuals would be able to purchase 50 units at trade price for the foreseeable future.

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Re: MD-2017 price fixing

Postby radiosification » 02 Jun 2017, 10:04

On second thought it probably wouldn't be wise to try and buy 50 of them anyway. I made a similar post in another forum and someone (who is also I user of this forum I believe) mentioned that there would probably be competition soon in the dual band DMR radio market and prices would have to drop anyway. I personally think I'll hold off buying until that happens.

It would be nice to see something done about the resale price maintenance (RPM) though by the authorities. I wouldn't be surprised if there was some kind of bribery involved in the exclusive dealer side of things, but it would be difficult to prove. Regarding the RPM though, it wouldn't be difficult at all to prove that, since there are extracts from emails posted online on trilogy's website. I'm surprised it's still up actually, I thought they might have taken the page down by now.
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Re: MD-2017 price fixing

Postby bigbloke » 08 Jun 2017, 09:03

radiosification wrote:We'll have to wait and see if it is supported by MD-380 tools. I doubt it will be in the short term at least.


KG5RCI has a 2017 and is already working on it

source=dmrtrack facebook group

Regards

BB

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Re: MD-2017 price fixing

Postby bigbloke » 08 Jun 2017, 09:05

radiosification wrote: Is it illegal?


sadly, no

regards

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Re: MD-2017 price fixing

Postby paulears » 09 Jun 2017, 07:50

People get so steamed up by price fixing, but we forget they're in business to make money. I've been selling one particular item on a web site and on ebay - for over ten years. A very cheap microphone - I sell it on ebay for £22 - I used to sell it for £29, and I was paying £9 per item for the first 8 or 9 years. Then it went up to £11. The wholesaler has increased the trade price to £19 - ebay and PayPal among to around £3 per unit. I cannot make a margin at these prices, and for a while I have been getting stock at the old price as a 'special' but that's finished now, so I've dumped a perfectly good product line because I cannot compete with idiots who make pence on each one. MOQ to go direct is now 5000 - and I don't have fifty grand to invest in stock that makes just a few quid.

I welcome any supplier who says you can buy this product ONLY if you sell it for £X. I would happily pay £19 to the wholesaler, and sell them on ebay for the old £29 price. Everyone would be making money. Without this, the only people benefitting are the end consumers, and while I am one too of course, it's unrealistic to expect the entire chain from factory to customer to suffer to benefit the end purchaser. It's basic business.

I'd like one of these radios for £140, but they're clearly going to be £200 at least. That is still excellent value for money. Why do we nowadays somehow think we are always entitled as a right to bargain pricing?

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Re: MD-2017 price fixing

Postby Admiral » 09 Jun 2017, 09:23

I am not a businessman Paul, so maybe as you are you could explain this in simple terms to a simple person (me).

If a manufacturer sells their product to wholesalers for say £100, what is the advantage to them to determine a fixed price to the end consumer? They still get their £100 whether the consumer pays £200 or £150 for the item.

And if you as a dealer were bound by a contract to sell at £200, if you were unfortunate to fall on hard times, then in theory you would have to legally liquidate that stock at 10p in the pound rather than a fire sale at cost to recoup some cash flow and maybe keep trading??

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Re: MD-2017 price fixing

Postby radiosification » 09 Jun 2017, 11:57

paulears wrote:I'd like one of these radios for £140, but they're clearly going to be £200 at least. That is still excellent value for money. Why do we nowadays somehow think we are always entitled as a right to bargain pricing?

It's not about thinking we are entitled to bargain pricing. It's about thinking we are entitled to buy goods in a free and competitive market, which, when we are in a capitalist country, we are entitled to.

The idea of a free market is that it balances itself out. If there is nobody selling a particular product anymore then somebody will be able to come along and sell it with a high margin, but then more people (retailers) will realise this and also start selling it. So eventually the price will balance out to a number that consumers are willing to pay, and retailers are able to sell at.

For this mechanism to work properly, suppliers should not interfere in the price that retailers sell their products at. That's why there are laws against it.
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Re: MD-2017 price fixing

Postby paulears » 09 Jun 2017, 16:27

Those laws have been around for a very long time, and plainly don't work. A free market is surely one where people are free to sell, as long as they play by the rules. We cannot have it both ways. We complain our local shops shut, but we buy online because it's much cheaper to buy from somebody with a store full of goods, who may be abroad, who often have no intention of offering any service whatsoever, and have no real outgoings - but we expect shops to still be there, but don't support their prices - which HAVE to be higher. Price fixing may well be illegal, but the price of a washing machine rarely gets chopped about, and even car dealerships have price bands that they cannot shift out of. They seem to operate by saying that we would like you to sell this radio for no less than £220, which will give you a decent X% margin, and for that we will give you some support in any service issues, access to firmware updates, software, accessories (which you can sell for lots), and we will forward enquiries from your geographical area to you and nobody else. What they don't say is that if you sell it cheaper and other dealers tell us, then when we are short of stock, we will send it to our toe the line dealers first. We might have difficulty in supplying accessories at a good price, and service wise - you're on your own.

You join the club and follow the rules, and if this week you want to knock a fiver off, or offer a free microphone - we are happy. If you start selling at low margins, then we would prefer our limited stock to go elsewhere.

You may think this is illegal, immoral or just be very cross, but in sales, with limited stock availability, you walk the line. You also need to face facts that foreign suppliers can sell to us at whatever price they invent. Our laws do not apply in their country.


You've got the free market mixed up - it's very capitalist to want to maximise profit. Driving prices down is not good business.

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Re: MD-2017 price fixing

Postby troffasky » 17 Jun 2017, 16:47

paulears wrote:I welcome any supplier who says you can buy this product ONLY if you sell it for £X.

Really? How would you feel about paying an extra £50 on your weekly shop because someone decided retailers aren't making enough margin? I think you would rapidly discover why people get so steamed up.

paulears wrote:Why do we nowadays somehow think we are always entitled as a right to bargain pricing?


Why do you think anybody is entitled to a margin? If one of your competitors decides they're going to make next to nothing competing with you, then so be it. Either they'll go bust, or they're more efficient than you, or they're not paying as much as you assume.

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Re: MD-2017 price fixing

Postby paulears » 19 Jun 2017, 14:49

You can't have it both ways. Somebody who could make 50% margin on a product is pretty entitled to be upset when somebody starts a downwards price war. I spend more and more time trying to source products worth selling, that nobody else is virtually giving away. Is it really OK for Tesco to sell milk for less than water? Farmers cannot make a living. That's fine?

It's great to get bargains, but at some point the chain breaks and you find that cheap radio is a pile of junk because all it needs is one small part but nobody's interested. Nobody will sell me a repeater for even fifty quid less than everyone else. The pair of sunglasses my wife fancies is the same in every dealer - price leeway on desirable goods is very narrow. You cannot have cheap prices and good everything else.

I'm reading up on a couple of items I want and people are complaining that the programming software wasn't supplied, or the cable isn't available, or all the other things people moan about - on a piece of kit selling for less than a meal for two at a nice restaurant.

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Re: MD-2017 price fixing

Postby troffasky » 19 Jun 2017, 17:34

paulears wrote:Somebody who could make 50% margin on a product is pretty entitled to be upset when somebody starts a downwards price war.


Annoyed, yeah, but upset? Really? It's capitalism. If it upsets you then it's probably time to move on.

paulears wrote:Is it really OK for Tesco to sell milk for less than water? Farmers cannot make a living. That's fine?


Personally I take a hard line on this stuff - if you are consistently unprofitable, just give up. Why do farmers keep selling milk below the cost of production? I don't get it. If enough of them give up, then at least whoever is left might make some money doing it.

Farming is somewhat different to radios, however, due to the level of subsidies:

https://fullfact.org/economy/farming-subsidies-uk/

I wish the government would give me some money to spend all day playing with radios.

paulears wrote:It's great to get bargains, but at some point the chain breaks and you find that cheap radio is a pile of junk because all it needs is one small part but nobody's interested.


People have a choice. If they're interested in a branded radio with commercial support, local dealers, parts availability, etc, then they can buy a Motorola or a Tytera and pay a premium for it. If they want a Bumfeng, they can buy a Bumfeng.

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Re: MD-2017 price fixing

Postby radiosification » 19 Jun 2017, 17:55

troffasky wrote:People have a choice. If they're interested in a branded radio with commercial support, local dealers, parts availability, etc, then they can buy a Motorola or a Tytera and pay a premium for it. If they want a Bumfeng, they can buy a Bumfeng.

Just a small note, Tytera (also known as TYT) is a chinese company who make cheap radios. They are not the same as Hytera (aka HYT), who make good quality radios and is a competitor to Motorola.

I'm sure you probably know this already and it was just a typo, but I just wanted to point it out so that it's clear for anybody else reading the thread.
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