Club Factory Is Selling Fake Products, Officially? Investigation Reveals Fake Watches, Shoes, Sun Glasses & More
It seems like the Chinese e-commerce company Club Factory is treading literally on thin ice. It has been noted that the Chinese company is selling counterfeit products on its platform, claiming it to be “high quality”, as a desperate attempt to establish a tight footfall in the fiercely competitive Indian e-commerce market.
Over the past 5-6 months the firm has been labelling fake products across categories such as cosmetics, watches, perfumes and footwear as “CF Verified” to garner the trust of the buyer, an investigation on the same reveals.
Club Factory Selling Fake Label Products
After constant run-ins with the Indian Customs and GST authorities, Club Factory has some nerve to go ahead and stock its platform with bulks of wide range counterfeit products.
No doubt the Indian e-commerce market is highly fierce and competitive but such an approach to seep into the market doesn’t bring up a gree flag for Club Factory, or so it appears.
A quick search on the app reveals about 20 listings for fake “Titan” watches, with discounts as high as 86%. A watch, retailed originally at Rs 3499 is being offered for as low as Rs 699 on the platform.
What’s surprising is the fact that all such high-end products are advertised at insane levels of discounts, bringing their prices down by an unbelievable degree. All of these listings are verified by Club Factory and the latter promotes them as “high quality”, making it even interesting by stating a “5 quality checks and 12 strict guidelines” parameter.
The best part here is that two agents tasked with sourcing products from China for Club Factory itself informed that after the company got off a grainy start in India, as the Indian customs cracked down on undervalued cheap Chinese imports that were meant to be Club Factory’s cost advantage, it had to quickly induct products of dubious quality, including fakes.
Some of Such Exceptionally Cheap Products
Products like Chanel and its line of exquisite fragrances, like “No. 5” and “Gabrielle” are highlighted at an 87% discount, finally bringing its price down to Rs 420.
Other counterfeit products include perfumes from Christian Dior and many other leading international brands. Lipsticks and foundation from MAC are priced down from Rs 1,999 to Rs 419 and follow the same certified stamp of a high-quality product.
Club Factory’s seemingly casual approach to certifying fake personal care products such as Hindustan Unilever’s Indulekha Hair Oil & Shampoo as high quality, offered at half the price could prove detrimental to consumers.
The worst case here is the knock-off of Bio Oil, which is a specialist skincare oil aimed at pregnant women which claims to help with stretch marks. This product is priced at a discount of 57% and recommended for pregnant women from the second trimester.
Brands like Ray-Ban, Police, Salvatore Ferragamo, Louis Vuitton, Gucci and more, are a large selection of fakes. Ray-Ban glasses originally priced at Rs 6,999 is offered at a markdown of 90% for a mere Rs 699. Shoes by Nike are “marked down” by 89% from Rs 14,999 to Rs 1,599. Slippers by Adidas and Nike are discounted at 75%.
Club Factory Isn’t as Innocent About This
Even though it deny any such actions of providing counterfeit products on its official platform, Club Factory knows that it is treading dangerous ground legally.
Due to this very reason, the Chinese company has not yet assigned any Chinese executive for the position of a director in India, in order to protect them from having to face legal action.
Speaking of its performance in India, Club Factory’s order volumes have been dropping since the beginning of this year due to poor customer service, even after providing such massive discounts.
In fact, Club Factory’s Facebook page is filled with buyer complaints about up to 50 days delay in fulfilment, damaged products and a complex return process.
Today, when leading marketplaces like Amazon and Snapdeal are rolling out anti-counterfeiting programs, like Project Zero and Brand Shield, respectively, Club Factory is not only listing fake products but also endorsing them via its “CF verified” certification.
Nevertheless, Club Factory does declare that it operates within the legal contours. They ensure that they have stringent guidelines to ensure the quality of a product is not compromised. Apparently they also welcome the users and partners to highlight the presence of any product not in order, following which shall not only remove those products but also take necessary action against the particular seller.