Yamaha Music Australia has confirmed that an unspecified number of dealers are transshipping Yamaha consumer electronics and musical instruments products into the country, however unlike the company’s US parent the local subsidiary is unable to terminate the dealers because it doesn’t own the Yamaha trademark locally.
A Yamaha spokesperson told US press today that a number of dealers had been transshipping ‘grey’ or unwarranted products into the country and selling them online at cheaper rates than at traditional retailers, causing problems for the company’s licensed resellers.
The spokesperson offered a $25,000 reward for information leading to the identity and prosecution of individuals who open cartons and alter factory serial numbers on Yamaha audio products – making them difficult to trace.
Yamaha Music Australia general manager, Simon Goldsworthy, told SmartHouse News this morning that he has been aware of “grey marketing coming in for a while now,” however local “parallel importation rules don’t prohibit this sort of thing.”
“Two suppliers can buy the same brand depending on terms of distribution because we don’t own the Yamaha trademark here,” said Goldsworthy.
Though importation laws don’t prohibit parallel importation – or two different importers/distributors bringing in the same products – Yamaha’s local component has the grounds to halt the selling of products with illegitimate serial numbers.
“We generally identify these products because of their [fake] warranties. All warranty numbers are checked by us,” Goldsworthy said.
‘Grey-marketed’ products are brought into the country and sold at prices below the recommended retail price, undercutting licensed Yamaha retailers.
Though Goldsworthy said he is “definitely not aware of large quantities coming in,” he said there are “definitely” a number of cases re-occurring locally, however these haven’t posed major problems to either Yamaha Music Australia’s bottom line or those of Yamaha resellers.