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Saxon

3rd Party Retailers of AOS

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This is probably a more general Games Workshop post but it definitely affects AOS.

Has anyone heard about the rumoured clamping down by Games Workshop on 3rd part retailers? 

As an Australian its extremely frustrating if this is true as we already pay almost double what the UK and US pay. Its so bad here that one of the major independent retailers (Mightyape) has gone to the regulatory watchdog. 

This retailer in particular has cited GW reducing their ability to be competitive in the GW market. Overall 6 independent retailers made submissions to the ACCC watchdog.

Given our already huge model costs and now an apparent attack on independent stockists of GW models, surely a big hit for AOS players in Oz. 

https://www.google.com.au/amp/s/www.kotaku.com.au/2013/04/the-iron-fist-how-games-workshop-intends-to-monopolise-the-online-sale-of-products/amp

https://www.google.com.au/url?sa=t&source=web&rct=j&url=https://www.accc.gov.au/system/files/public-registers/documents/D14%2B158590.pdf&ved=2ahUKEwiNs9Dj9f3mAhVGzzgGHf34BlQQFjACegQIAxAB&usg=AOvVaw0RXz3Lwewb2jjcU2siuQ6Q

What do you think about this? Is this happening outside of Australia/New Zealand?

 

Edited by Saxon

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I don’t know a lot about the scene down under but I know this happened quite a few years ago (see date of the article you’ve linked to 😉).

The Oz scene seems great at the moment going off social media and YouTube 

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8 minutes ago, Gaz Taylor said:

I don’t know a lot about the scene down under but I know this happened quite a few years ago (see date of the article you’ve linked to 😉).

The Oz scene seems great at the moment going off social media and YouTube 

 

9 minutes ago, Gaz Taylor said:

I don’t know a lot about the scene down under but I know this happened quite a few years ago (see date of the article you’ve linked to 😉).

The Oz scene seems great at the moment going off social media and YouTube 

I didnt realise they were so old but i have been hearing noise down here from other local retailers as well as comments in local facebook groups but couldnt find anything else substantial. I unfortunately dont live anywhere near a Warhammer store. 

I'd love to know why our comparable costs are so prohibitively high compared to other regions. Its extortionate. 

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15 minutes ago, Saxon said:

 

I didnt realise they were so old but i have been hearing noise down here from other local retailers as well as comments in local facebook groups but couldnt find anything else substantial. I unfortunately dont live anywhere near a Warhammer store. 

I'd love to know why our comparable costs are so prohibitively high compared to other regions. Its extortionate. 

Same reason our prices for electronics were so high for ages

Because the companies can

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Ozland has something odd going on with regard to prices, though I have wondered if some of the examples, such as cheaper to ship privately from overseas than commercially, might be because commercial shipping is subsidising consumer shipping. Ergo a company pays more to ship to Ozland than a private individual would pay for a smaller parcel. However I've no idea if this i sthe case. 

 

GW is certainly not alone; indeed it seems that a large majority of products end up getting more expensive entering Australia and that region. It might be companies are price gouging, but there might also be other elements that are resulting in the higher costs. 

 

 

GW if anything at least offers some competitive protection though. By limiting which region traders can trade within when they trade with GW stock, your Australian 3rd parties can at least trade within Australia without having to deal with cheaper regions being able to ship to them. So the cheaper USA stores shouldn't be shipping products to Australia. Of course this also benefits GW too, but it does at least offer some shield against cheaper outside sources for the majority of Australian customers. Of course if the government and companies can find ways to lower the price of goods in general in Australia taht would be even better.

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There are a few interacting factors that result in higher prices in Australia generally (geo-blocking, import costs, relatively high taxes, distribution of population), GW are- as noted- not alone in their eye-watering prices, though I couldn't possibly say how third parties are able to supply at cheaper prices beyond half-heartedly suggesting magic.

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Miniature wargaming in Australia is a "luxury item." Which basically means its not essential and can have whichever price tag the distributor (GW) wants to place on it.

Rumour is we also pay the brexit tax in our pricing, which isn't alsupposed to happen. We're supposed to pay GST (which we do) but not stacked with Brexit as well.

Australians generally receive a 30 - 60% markup from the exchange rate. A keeper of secrets is $130 approx if you exchanged UK prices, but has been marked up to $188.

Stores that sell for 15 - 20% off (they do exist) don't make much profit from individual sales from what I hear beyond constant turnover of products. That speaks volumes at how high the distributor pricing is before it gets to the retail side.

So yeah, we do get ripped off substantially in this hobby.

Edited by Malios

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this has happened before but it tends to especially hit southern hemisphere markets, but other markets get hit too(the now repealed N.America shopping cart ban comes to mind), when the kotaku article was written 2013 while price wise not as high now was probably the worst point for GW to third party relations as the company's strategy of selling minis rather then a hobby(moving away from the rogue Trader flyer days, to literal saying we make the best quality miinis therefore we should charge  as much as posible). this has now changed somewhat but a lot of policies remain.

Part of it is shipping there was a big spike in prices(not that again the Australia market was cheap to begin with) after the N. American production facility closed and I believe some of that was just logistical costs went up and distribution capacity went down. This isn't even going into the currency exchange market(which has sometimes over inflated Canadian costs) that while the Australian Dollar is well traded by international standards it still doesnt reach the levels of the Sterling, the Euro and the American dollar

It also could come down to local trade laws for example the US's intellectual property laws gave GW a great grasp of images of their IP preventing stores from even showing images of models on 3rd party websites. While EU copyright law is theorized to of given us the words Duardin and Orruks

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IMO GWS channel sales is quite immature.

Their Warhammer stores directly compete with FLGS (3rd party retailers), which is a complete disaster from a partner relationship perspective. The proper way to do channel sales is to always redirect sales to the local re-seller so they make the margin. Warhammer stores should purely be for marketing and branding purpose. In a country as large as Australia, relying on channel partners is probably one of the best way to distribute and sell products.

With the convenience of e-commerce and if you have a contact in Asia, you can always parallel import products. Not only is it much cheaper (even with shipping), you can buy products that are sold out in your region. Inter-country trade relationship also affect pricing. For example, it is somehow cheaper to import some products from Asia via Singapore to Australia than directly to Australia...

The final resort which I think is pretty disrespectful to the game designers and which I do no advocate is to recast in China.

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11 hours ago, InSaint said:

Their Warhammer stores directly compete with FLGS (3rd party retailers), which is a complete disaster from a partner relationship perspective. The proper way to do channel sales is to always redirect sales to the local re-seller so they make the margin. Warhammer stores should purely be for marketing and branding purpose. In a country as large as Australia, relying on channel partners is probably one of the best way to distribute and sell products.

I would have agreed six months ago, but as someone who just got a Warhammer store, our game scene has grown exponentially, from like 3-5 active people at most to that as a minimum on weekends and as many as 20 during prime game time, which the FLGS never saw. 

That was 40K. AoS grew from 1 (me) to 4  active and about 10-12 who play. That’s a win in my opinion 

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The problem wargames have, esp Warhammer, is that they have a very high price and high volume of space demand to stock even a modest amount of product. Considering many geeky shops tend to be smaller; space is at a high premium. A hobby store is far more likely to favour something like Magic the Gathering which can show its entire range and accessories on one shelving unit for far less cost to buy-into. 

A GW store on the other hand has no competing products and no competing profit lines. They thus don't undercut a local store. If anything the 3rd party store will often undercut the GW stores prices on product. What the GW store often offers is a vastly increased range of on-hand product to sell. In addition, as Fairbanks notes; a local GW store has a staff setup that is only interested in getting more local players. A 3rd party will often have competing interests and outside of the staff's own interests; what gets pushed is likely linked more to sales and profits. A slow to sell product line like wargames might not be as favoured as card games which can turn over far faster and make far more impulse purchases. You can easily get a MTG player to buy another pack of cards when they walk in the door - for a wargame the only thing in a comparable price point is paint and brushes which typically people either want when they enter or don't want - its much harder to impulse sell on small purchases when most are going to be at the £15 or greater with basic boxes of troops anywhere from £20 to £35 

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