Polar put Polar4Less.com out of business

Discussion in 'Triathlon' started by NewsBirdie, Sep 12, 2004.

  1. NewsBirdie

    NewsBirdie Guest

    I ordered a Polar watch from Polar4Less about 3 weeks ago. I
    purchased the S210 and it was $136.75 with free shipping. The
    "standard" Polar price was $25 more, and everyone except Polar4Less
    seemed to be selling it at exactly the same (higher) price. I was
    very pleased with Polar4Less because not only did they get me my watch
    right away but they saved me $25!

    So today I was looking at their website thinking about getting the new
    Polar S-625x. I was shocked when I saw their message saying Polar has
    revoked their distributorship because they were selling the Polar
    watches cheaper! Here's the message on their website
    (http://polar4less.com/heart_rate_monitors.htm) :

    --

    Polar has decided to FORCE companies to advertise their products at a
    HIGHER PRICE than what we wanted to sell their products at.
    We felt a 25% profit margin was MORE THAN ACCEPTABLE
    POLAR feels that we needed to ADVERTISE AT A HIGHER PRICE
    LISTED BELOW ARE OUR FORMER PRICES and POLAR's FORCED PRICE
    MAYBE YOU SHOULD RETHINK BUYING A POLAR PRODUCT UNTIL THEY ALLOW YOU
    TO SEE PRICES THAT THE DISTRIBUTOR WANTS TO SELL YOU THE PRODUCT FOR.
    ALL WE TRIED TO DO WAS SAVE THE CONSUMER $$$
    AND THAT COST US OUR POLAR DISTRIBUTORSHIP

    --

    I find this totally unacceptable. I'm suprised it's not illegal. Can
    we let Polar get away with this? If we do we'll continue paying very
    high mark-ups for our watches. I hope some Polar competitors come up
    with some good quality products to compete with Polar, and if I can I
    will help them do so by buying my next HRM from a company other than
    Polar.

    -Michael
     
    Tags:


  2. Paul Cassel

    Paul Cassel Guest

    NewsBirdie wrote:


    >
    > Polar has decided to FORCE companies to advertise their products at a
    > HIGHER PRICE than what we wanted to sell their products at.


    Common practice. Note the company can SELL them for anything it wants,
    but it can't advertise them for less than Polar's standards. So you need
    to email or call the company instead of browsing. Inconvenient, but no
    biggie.
     
  3. Terry Morse

    Terry Morse Guest

    Paul Cassel wrote:

    > >
    > > Polar has decided to FORCE companies to advertise their products at a
    > > HIGHER PRICE than what we wanted to sell their products at.

    >
    > Common practice. Note the company can SELL them for anything it wants,
    > but it can't advertise them for less than Polar's standards.


    That's commonly called a Minimum Advertised Price agreement, and the
    FTC has real problems with it. See the following case for example:

    "The substantial anticompetitive effects of these programs, balanced
    against the absence of plausible efficiency rationales for them,
    give us reason to believe that these programs constitute
    unreasonable vertical restraints in violation of Section 5 of the
    FTC Act under a rule of reason analysis."

    http://www.ftc.gov/os/2000/05/mapanalysis.htm

    --
    terry morse Palo Alto, CA http://bike.terrymorse.com/
     
  4. Phil M.

    Phil M. Guest

    Paul Cassel <[email protected]> wrote:

    > NewsBirdie wrote:
    >
    >
    >>
    >> Polar has decided to FORCE companies to advertise their products at a
    >> HIGHER PRICE than what we wanted to sell their products at.

    >
    > Common practice. Note the company can SELL them for anything it wants,
    > but it can't advertise them for less than Polar's standards. So you need
    > to email or call the company instead of browsing. Inconvenient, but no
    > biggie.



    >> AND THAT COST US OUR POLAR DISTRIBUTORSHIP

    According to this Polar4less.com will not be selling Polar at *any* price.

    Phil M.

    --
    "Learn from the mistakes of others. You can't live long enough to make
    them all yourself." ­Martin Vanbee
     
  5. Mattlap2

    Mattlap2 Guest

    Michael,

    What they did is not unheard of nor illegal. They adopted or enforced what is
    known as a MAP (Minimum Advertised Price). They can not dictate what a dealer
    can sell a product for. But th ey can dictate what a customer may advertise
    the price for. Its very common in the photographic industry.

    It is there to keep vendors for low balling a product to use it as a loss
    leader. Its also there to keep a few big dealers from putting 100s of smaller
    dealers out of business and then being able to dictate the market. If there
    are only 2 big dealers out there for a product they suddenly have huge control
    of the company they distribute. They can decide they want X percentage lower
    than anyone else and suddenly they have an unfair advantage.

    My guess is that this company refused to abide by the MAP and continued to
    advertise below the allowed price. There are tricks around it that camera
    stores use and they probably could have used them as well.

    Matt LaPointe
    Chicago
    >Polar has decided to FORCE companies to advertise their products at a
    >HIGHER PRICE than what we wanted to sell their products at.
    >We felt a 25% profit margin was MORE THAN ACCEPTABLE
    >POLAR feels that we needed to ADVERTISE AT A HIGHER PRICE
    >LISTED BELOW ARE OUR FORMER PRICES and POLAR's FORCED PRICE
    >MAYBE YOU SHOULD RETHINK BUYING A POLAR PRODUCT UNTIL THEY ALLOW YOU
    >TO SEE PRICES THAT THE DISTRIBUTOR WANTS TO SELL YOU THE PRODUCT FOR.
    >ALL WE TRIED TO DO WAS SAVE THE CONSUMER $$$
    >AND THAT COST US OUR POLAR DISTRIBUTORSHIP
    >
    >--
    >
    >I find this totally unacceptable. I'm suprised it's not illegal. Can
    >we let Polar get away with this? If we do we'll continue paying very
    >high mark-ups for our watches. I hope some Polar competitors come up
    >with some good quality products to compete with Polar, and if I can I
    >will help them do so by buying my next HRM from a company other than
    >Polar.
    >
    >-Michael
     
  6. Harold Buck

    Harold Buck Guest

    In article <[email protected]>,
    [email protected] (Mattlap2) wrote:

    > My guess is that this company refused to abide by the MAP and continued to
    > advertise below the allowed price. There are tricks around it that camera
    > stores use and they probably could have used them as well.



    Probably advertise at the minimum but make coupons for discounts readily
    available.

    --Harold Buck


    "I used to rock and roll all night,
    and party every day.
    Then it was every other day. . . ."
    -Homer J. Simpson
     
  7. Terry Morse <[email protected]> wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...
    > Paul Cassel wrote:
    >
    > > >
    > > > Polar has decided to FORCE companies to advertise their products at a
    > > > HIGHER PRICE than what we wanted to sell their products at.

    > >
    > > Common practice. Note the company can SELL them for anything it wants,
    > > but it can't advertise them for less than Polar's standards.

    >
    > That's commonly called a Minimum Advertised Price agreement, and the
    > FTC has real problems with it. See the following case for example:


    Gee, that's really stopping companies from doing it. They all must be
    quaking in their boots.

    dkl
     
  8. In article <[email protected]>, [email protected]
    says...

    >Gee, that's really stopping companies from doing it. They all must be
    >quaking in their boots.


    The FTC may change their mind and do something about it. I hope they do
    because it is simply another way to do price fixing.
    ---------------
    Alex
     
  9. Terry Morse

    Terry Morse Guest

    Douglas Landau wrote:

    > > That's commonly called a Minimum Advertised Price agreement, and the
    > > FTC has real problems with it.

    >
    > Gee, that's really stopping companies from doing it. They all must be
    > quaking in their boots.


    Sarcasm? Let me try:

    The federal enforcement of antitrust laws is the best our tax
    dollars can afford.
    --
    terry morse Palo Alto, CA http://bike.terrymorse.com/
     
  10. I just sent an e-mail informing them that the 625SX I just purchased
    will be my last unless I see Polar4Less back in business. Dave
    >
    >>>AND THAT COST US OUR POLAR DISTRIBUTORSHIP

    >
    > According to this Polar4less.com will not be selling Polar at *any* price.
    >
    > Phil M.
    >
     
  11. jim beam

    jim beam Guest

    NewsBirdie wrote:
    <snip>
    > Polar has decided to FORCE companies to advertise their products at a
    > HIGHER PRICE than what we wanted to sell their products at.
    > We felt a 25% profit margin was MORE THAN ACCEPTABLE
    > POLAR feels that we needed to ADVERTISE AT A HIGHER PRICE
    > LISTED BELOW ARE OUR FORMER PRICES and POLAR's FORCED PRICE
    > MAYBE YOU SHOULD RETHINK BUYING A POLAR PRODUCT UNTIL THEY ALLOW YOU
    > TO SEE PRICES THAT THE DISTRIBUTOR WANTS TO SELL YOU THE PRODUCT FOR.
    > ALL WE TRIED TO DO WAS SAVE THE CONSUMER $$$
    > AND THAT COST US OUR POLAR DISTRIBUTORSHIP
    >


    old problem. easily solved. set up an operation [or several] that
    buys, and another that sells. there's nothing preventing the "buyer"
    from selling to the discounter at cost, and if you do it right, the
    manufacurer can't choke off supply because it can't associate the two
    [or more] operations. don't be such a victim.
     
  12. No idea about Polar's treatment of its distributors. But Nashbar and
    Performance both sell Polar hear rate monitors. Each usually has a
    few models on sale in every catalog. And you can always find a 10% or
    20% off coupon for Nashbar or Performance. So if you want a Polar
    heart rate monitor, its easy to get them for much less than the MSRP.

    The S210 is listed at $162 at Performance. Less a 20% off code gets
    you down to $130. And if you buy lots of stuff it makes sense to join
    Team Performance for $20 and get 10% credit on future orders. Its not
    difficult to get Polar heart rate monitors, or anything else, for less
    than the price you paid.

    http://www.edealinfo.com/Coupons/performancebike.shtml Go here to
    find various coupons for Performance and Nashbar and others.


    [email protected] (NewsBirdie) wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...
    > I ordered a Polar watch from Polar4Less about 3 weeks ago. I
    > purchased the S210 and it was $136.75 with free shipping. The
    > "standard" Polar price was $25 more, and everyone except Polar4Less
    > seemed to be selling it at exactly the same (higher) price. I was
    > very pleased with Polar4Less because not only did they get me my watch
    > right away but they saved me $25!
    >
    > So today I was looking at their website thinking about getting the new
    > Polar S-625x. I was shocked when I saw their message saying Polar has
    > revoked their distributorship because they were selling the Polar
    > watches cheaper! Here's the message on their website
    > (http://polar4less.com/heart_rate_monitors.htm) :
    >
    > --
    >
    > Polar has decided to FORCE companies to advertise their products at a
    > HIGHER PRICE than what we wanted to sell their products at.
    > We felt a 25% profit margin was MORE THAN ACCEPTABLE
    > POLAR feels that we needed to ADVERTISE AT A HIGHER PRICE
    > LISTED BELOW ARE OUR FORMER PRICES and POLAR's FORCED PRICE
    > MAYBE YOU SHOULD RETHINK BUYING A POLAR PRODUCT UNTIL THEY ALLOW YOU
    > TO SEE PRICES THAT THE DISTRIBUTOR WANTS TO SELL YOU THE PRODUCT FOR.
    > ALL WE TRIED TO DO WAS SAVE THE CONSUMER $$$
    > AND THAT COST US OUR POLAR DISTRIBUTORSHIP
    >
    > --
    >
    > I find this totally unacceptable. I'm suprised it's not illegal. Can
    > we let Polar get away with this? If we do we'll continue paying very
    > high mark-ups for our watches. I hope some Polar competitors come up
    > with some good quality products to compete with Polar, and if I can I
    > will help them do so by buying my next HRM from a company other than
    > Polar.
    >
    > -Michael
     
  13. RWM

    RWM Guest

    "jim beam" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]
    > NewsBirdie wrote:
    > <snip>
    > > Polar has decided to FORCE companies to advertise their products at a
    > > HIGHER PRICE than what we wanted to sell their products at.
    > > We felt a 25% profit margin was MORE THAN ACCEPTABLE
    > > POLAR feels that we needed to ADVERTISE AT A HIGHER PRICE
    > > LISTED BELOW ARE OUR FORMER PRICES and POLAR's FORCED PRICE
    > > MAYBE YOU SHOULD RETHINK BUYING A POLAR PRODUCT UNTIL THEY ALLOW YOU
    > > TO SEE PRICES THAT THE DISTRIBUTOR WANTS TO SELL YOU THE PRODUCT FOR.
    > > ALL WE TRIED TO DO WAS SAVE THE CONSUMER $$$
    > > AND THAT COST US OUR POLAR DISTRIBUTORSHIP
    > >

    >
    > old problem. easily solved. set up an operation [or several] that
    > buys, and another that sells. there's nothing preventing the "buyer"
    > from selling to the discounter at cost, and if you do it right, the
    > manufacurer can't choke off supply because it can't associate the two
    > [or more] operations. don't be such a victim.


    Don't fool yourself, if the discounter is really a pain to the manufacturer
    they will find them. It is easy to do with serial numbers, or other product
    codes. If you have done it and survived it was only because the
    manufacturer didn't care.

    >
     
  14. NewsBirdie

    NewsBirdie Guest

    > No idea about Polar's treatment of its distributors. But Nashbar and
    > Performance both sell Polar hear rate monitors. Each usually has a
    >
    > http://www.edealinfo.com/Coupons/performancebike.shtml Go here to
    > find various coupons for Performance and Nashbar and others.


    Great link! You're right, Nashbar almost always have 10% off and
    sometimes 20%. Worth waiting for the 20% for a big purchase.

    Thanks!
    -Michael
     
  15. Mattlap2

    Mattlap2 Guest

    >old problem. easily solved. set up an operation [or several] that
    >buys, and another that sells. there's nothing preventing the "buyer"
    >from selling to the discounter at cost, and if you do it right, the
    >manufacurer can't choke off supply because it can't associate the two
    >[or more] operations. don't be such a victim.


    Until your warranty is voided because you bought the product from an
    unauthorized dealer.
     
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