Saturday, April 13, 2024

Case makes retailers sit up

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Bridgetown retailers say they will exercise greater caution when buying what is supposed to be brand-name gear.

A number of them made this point yesterday as they reacted to Tuesday’s historic conviction of Grenville Delpeache for selling knock-off Puma items in his City store Ouch Boutique. He was the first person in Barbados to suffer such a fate.

Delpeache faces a maximum penalty of $10 000 or six months behind bars. He returns to court April 17 to hear a pre-sentencing report.

Owner of Super Style Shoe Shop in Roebuck Street, Clifton King, whose business was established in 1994, told the DAILY NATION merchants should always abide by the rules and regulations that govern the buying and selling of goods.

“I don’t really carry any brand name; so the investigation would not affect me personally as an outlet. But the law is the law, so obviously merchants should do their research about where they are buying from and who they are buying from, which is important because, as you can see, you can run into trouble,” he said.

A Swan Street boutique owner, who requested anonymity, described Delpeache’s case as unfortunate, adding that the retail clothing industry was not as straightforward as it seemed.

“In this business it can be easy to find yourself in a situation like that because we buy based on appearance. If something is visually appealing, pretty or stands out, we purchase it.”

However, manager of customer service and corporate communications at Cave Shepherd on Broad Street, Mark Anthony, admonished business people to always sell genuine goods.

“We decline to comment on the [Delpeache] issue because that is a legal matter. But, as a store, it is important that consumers trust us and it’s about the integrity that we have built over the years as a business.

“We operate in a global environment and we have a responsibility to our customers to ensure we provide authentic stuff. Our things come directly from the manufacturers, in most cases, so the likelihood of us getting caught up in something like that is very, very unlikely,” he said. (SB)

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