Nikon fights grey imports with 'peace of mind' campaign

Offers extended warranty and sealed boxes for quality assurance

Nikon Australia has hit out against resellers offering cut-price ‘grey market’ international stock to Australian customers with its I AM Peace of Mind campaign.

The initiative promotes the value of buying genuine Nikon Australia stock, touting an extended warranty, buying advice from local resellers, no taxes or ‘hidden’ import tariffs, and membership of the My Nikon Life club:

<img src="http://demo.idg.com.au/pcw/inlineimages/nikon_iampeaceofmind_thumb.jpg"class="left"border="0"alt="Nikon Australia I AM Peace of Mind campaign">

Click the image to see the full details of Nikon’s I AM Peace of Mind initiative.

Today’s media statement says the I AM Peace of Mind campaign was engineered in response to “an increase in direct import or ‘grey market’ trading” — the final straw of which may have been JB Hi-Fi’s move to sell imported stock through an online-only store in November last year.

Late last week, industry Web site Smarthouse reported JB Hi-Fi and Nikon had reached a deal: the retailer would no longer be selling ‘direct import’ Nikon products — usually sourced from markets like Thailand or Hong Kong — and would instead be exclusively selling Australian stock at competitive prices.

All Nikon products have been removed from JB’s Direct Import Web store, and the Australian-sourced Nikon products on JB Hi-Fi’s local online store — like the Nikon D7000 — are selling for prices close to those offered by international Web stores.

It is unclear whether other Australian resellers will be offered similar wholesale prices that would allow them to compete with overseas importers. A representative of Nikon Australia told GoodGearGuide the general I AM Peace of Mind initiative was not limited to JB Hi-Fi, and any Nikon authorised reseller in Australia could join it upon agreement to not take part in direct importing.

Nikon has previously offered an extended year of warranty (for a total of two years) to any local buyer registering through My Nikon Life, and this service will continue through the I AM Peace of Mind initiative. The media statement released today notes warranty repairs will be performed “by trained technicians using genuine Nikon parts”.

In addition, some Australian Nikon stock sold through Nikon authorised resellers will be sealed at the factory in order to offer further assurance of local sourcing. This security will initially be applied to Nikon digital SLR twin lens kit products, although Nikon Australia is “exploring possibilities” with other cameras. Nikon Australia promotes its products’ compliance with local standards in the I AM Peace of Mind statement; there have been unverified reports some ‘grey market’ resellers have sold products with non-genuine accessories such as batteries or chargers.

Nikon Australia did not respond to a request for clarification on JB Hi-Fi’s local pricing agreements before the time of publication.

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