While it has been known for a while that some imported stock was sold at retailers, JB HiFi has now taken away all doubt.
Browning told Kotaku: “In some cases consumers could purchase titles cheaper from overseas than we could locally via the licensed distributor. We have decided to act in accordance with our cheapest prices promise and source selected popular titles directly from overseas wholesalers in order to provide these prices to our customers.”
When asked what the criteria were for selecting which titles to import, Browning told MCV: “We will select titles where it makes sense on the basis of adequate supply, expected demand and meaningful differences in local vs international pricing.”
The move comes during a time when JB faces competition from fiercely discounted stock from less specialist retailers moving to reduce their gaming range, as well as the import market itself proving a direct threat.
While some publishers’ RRPs have started coming down as a result of the threat of a retailer doing precisely what JB has overtly (and other retailers covertly) done, it seems the efforts haven’t been enough.
Browning added: “We remain very positive about the outlook for retail gaming in Australia.”
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