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Baros

Baros can refer to:

  • Milan BaroŇ°, Czech soccer player
  • Baros, an island at Maldives
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Makes us seem like we're profiteering
From ERT Weekly, 3/24/05 by Tracy Baros

Dear ERT Weekly,

I AM writing to offer our full support for the comments made by Tom Hayes and subsequent dealers since.

We have been experiencing problems with internet pricing on both brown and white goods that has been worsening for over two years.

We are a considerable size independent with four branches and employ 38 full-time staff.

We have been trading for over 80 years and up until two years ago we maintained acceptable profits and turnover.

We have always prided ourselves on our high levels of service, which our customers undoubtedly appreciated.

Now it is impossible for us to argue that our service is the reason for a customer to buy from us instead of the internet, when the price difference has become so great.

We recently surveyed our local competition on an LCD TV. Most of them were 1,800 [pounds sterling]; the cheapest price on the Net was 929 [pounds sterling], which dropped to 919 [pounds sterling] the next day, both cheaper than we can buy it in for, including our retro and settlement terms.

We have argued this case and many others with the suppliers who have conveniently turned a blind eye to the problem insisting that e-tailers get no extra funding.

This example in itself poses many points:

* It makes our customers think we are making extortionate profits at their expense and this now includes our regular customers;

* The "price" is being driven so low that even the Internet companies can't be making satisfactory profit margins;

* It will be the end of retail shopping of any kind, as we cannot survive without making a profit;

* If this happens the manufacturers will end up supplying the same amount of stock, but getting less for it;

* Long term the customer will suffer, as even if they want to pay extra for a service, there won't be any choice.

I am the third generation involved in the running of our business, and I am not prepared to let 80 years of trading end without a fight.

During at least 20 of those years my own family life was compromised while my father worked 13 to 15 hours a day building a successful business through "the three-day week" of the early 70s, recessions. Sunday trading and more recently the intervention of the MMC.

I realise that three major manufacturers are changing their price policy shortly, but it's not enough.

If something major doesn't happen quickly, in favour of the high street, it will not only be the demise of the independents, but of the manufacturers, CIH and Retra as we know them today.

As my grandfather used to say: "Anybody can sell 1 [pounds sterling] notes for 10 shillings."

TRACY BAROS, Mains Electrical, Bishops Stortford, Herts

COPYRIGHT 2005 DMG World Media Ltd.
COPYRIGHT 2005 Gale Group

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