Friday, 24 February 2012

Wasteful, harmful to the environment, and it just lost them a customer.

I've been using a Braun PocketGo P-60 for a couple of years now; it's been an excellent razor for fast shaves when I oversleep (do NOT try to wet shave with a safety razor when in a hurry - it gets messy!), or when I run out of razor blades (not unknown!).

However, like most electric razors, the foils, the bit between your skin and the cutting heads, tend to wear out, and require replacing.

Imagine my absolute disgust when I found out today that, not only do they not supply replacement foils, that they apparently suggest that such a replacement, if available to the public, would cost £25?! Given that the original razor cost the princely sum of less than £20, this is a rip-off of the highest order; further, while I acknowledge that they have a two year warranty, it requires you to post the complete razor back for a warranty foil replacement - and the postage alone for a parcel is restrictive, and this not cost-effective for most of us. It also deprives those of us who use one razor, from having said razor, for however long it might take Braun to get around to replacing the foil and posting the damn thing back to us.

The end result is that most of us will bin a perfectly good razor for the want of what is most likely in reality an item that probably costs Braun less than a quid (at unit volume costs) to create (a strip of coated tin foil with holes in it).

I find their attitude wasteful, environmentally-irresponsible, high-handed, and totally contrary to how I expect responsible businesses to behave.

I also was under the impression that companies were required to keep spares (consumables, even), on hand for customer repairs, but apparently this is not the case - they only have to repair or replace within six months, according to the Sale of Goods Act information that I've looked at today. So, even our laws are not working for us. That's something of a longer-term fix to be looked at.

I the mean time, you want it from the horses' mouth? Fine. here's their OFFICIAL response to one of their (probably former) customers (I've corrected her spelling mistake in this quote, by the way):

Susie (Official Rep) July 06, 2011 07:49
Hi Barry and thanks for getting in touch.

Unfortunately I don’t have good news for you... Since the replacement foils normally cost around £25, it is not cost effective for the stockists to sell a foil for our Pocket & Go / Mobile Shavers which cost around £18, and regrettably foils are not available to buy anywhere. I am sorry to have to disappoint you, but at least you can stop looking!
This reply, and others, can be found in context here:

The attitude of Braun, a Procter & Gamble company, beggars belief. The end result for me, is that while it may be inconvenient to me in the short term, Braun just lost another customer, and I'll be making hard choices on whether to purchase any other P&G products and brands in the future, until such time as they mend their irresponsible ways.

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