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Saving For a Space Ship

Play.com Sold - £25M Cash '3Rd Biggest Uk E-Tailer'

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The Amazon / Ebay duopoly continues undented by Uk minnows..

Play.com sold to Rakuten

Link

Play.com has been bought by Japanese e-commerce firm Rakuten for £25m in cash.

The move is part of the company's European expansion plan, with Play.com the third company it has bought during the last two years. The deal is expected to be completed by early October 2011. Rakuten operates e-commerce businesses across 10 countries, including Japan.

Hiroshi Mikitani, chairman and c.e.o. of Rakuten, said: "The UK market is one of Europe's largest and most mature e-commerce markets. Play.com is not only a pioneer in the market, but also one of the UK's most successful e-commerce businesses.

"We aim to leverage our e-commerce strength and experience to further expand and develop Play.com's business model and channel its loyal user base, merchants, and deep product offerings into Rakuten's global e-commerce network."

Play.com was founded in 1998, initially selling CDs and DVDs. In April, the retailer announced it was seeking investment for European expansion.

6 months ago....

Link

analysts said that Play.com was almost certainly worth in excess of £400m given that turnover and profits have grown rapidly and the company was deemed by experts to be worth at least £300m two years ago.

Perhaps something to do with...

"Channel Island VAT Loophole To Close Within a Year"

Reminds me of a Bill Hicks quote:

“People say "Iraq had the fourth largest army in the world". Yeah, maybe, but you know what, after the first 3 largest armies, there's a REAL big fvcking drop-off. The Hare Krishnas are the 5th largest army in the world, and they've already got all our airports.”

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So either the Japs have picked up a bargain in a fire sale or the bankers were telling porkpies with their £300m valuation.

Hmmm... :unsure:

Dot com bubble bust part 2 ?

Telegraph article on the sale

Following criticism that Jersey was playing host to offshore companies that had chosen Jersey purely to take advantage of the VAT relief, the island outlawed non-Jersey owned companies from participating in the loophole exploitation.

Under Jersey regulation, non-Jersey owned companies cannot set up in Jersey and exploit the loophole, so it remains to be seen if Play.com, now under Japanese ownership, will be forced to leave the Channel Island even before the loophole is eventually closed.

Edited by Saving For a Space Ship

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So either the Japs have picked up a bargain in a fire sale or the bankers were telling porkpies with their £300m valuation.

It just goes to show that Play.com is the place to go for a bargain. :D

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I must get around 2-3 emails a week telling be about how great their current sale is and how I must buy now to grab a bargain before it's too late!

I'm surprised Play hasn't/isn't going the way of Comet et al. IMO, their portfolio is broadly, but too narrowly, based around the worst of consumerism - expendable items like DVDs, CDs, Camcorders etc - I.e. The items ppl will cut back on first.

Re: dot com bubble 2 - yes! And just shows how insubstantial that Market valuations are, as well of those of ratings agencies. Who polices the police...

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Have none of these investors heard of boo.com.

Wikipedia Boo.com

Boo.com was a British Internet company, founded by Swedes Ernst Malmsten, Kajsa Leander and Patrik Hedelin, which went bust following the dot-com boom of the late 1990s.

After several highly publicised delays, Boo.com launched in the autumn of 1999 selling branded fashion apparel over the Internet. The company spent $135 million of venture capital in just 18 months,[1] and it was placed into receivership on 18 May 2000 and liquidated.

In June 2008, CNET hailed Boo.com as one of the greatest dot-com busts in history.[2]

Ernst Malmsten wrote about the experience in a book called Boo Hoo: A dot.com Story from Concept to Catastrophe, published in 2001.[1]

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There is no brand loyalty to these sites. Anyone with any sense just uses Kelkoo or similar to quickly find the cheapest product. If I found a blu-ray I wanted for £1 cheaper on a site I had never used before, I would buy it. (As I did with "The social network" from mymemory.co.uk the other day). In that sense, they are almost worthless as businesses.

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There is no brand loyalty to these sites. Anyone with any sense just uses Kelkoo or similar to quickly find the cheapest product. If I found a blu-ray I wanted for £1 cheaper on a site I had never used before, I would buy it. (As I did with "The social network" from mymemory.co.uk the other day). In that sense, they are almost worthless as businesses.

I only partially agree with that. After the experience we just had with g a m e s b a s e m e n t. I would never use someone that I didn't know or I had checked out. I tend to look at amsazon,play,ebay,ebuyer etc.. or just googling it then taking a view. If its cheaper it tends to be for a reason. Like its in Germany or the postage is ten times as much.

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"Under Jersey regulation, non-Jersey owned companies cannot set up in Jersey and exploit the loophole, so it remains to be seen if Play.com, now under Japanese ownership, will be forced to leave the Channel Island even before the loophole is eventually closed."

Of course the change happened years ago, and was just to reduce the new companies piling in. They won't touch anything already there.

As for the closure of the vat loophole, I will believe it when I see it. Amazon sell below play prices anyway so it isn't the issue it once was.

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Usually Amazon is cheaper than play even once you factor in the shipping, but occasionally you'll find the same seller on Play offer the album cheaper than the price on Amazon or you can find another it just cheaper.

Always worth a look. But 90% of the time Amazon is cheaper.

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Have none of these investors heard of boo.com.

Boo.com had the flawed strategy of charging "MORE" than high street retailers for the same stuff under the mistaken belief that people would think it cool to wait for the 2 megabyte "Miss Boo" animated clothing advisor to download over their 56 kbps modem. I told the Swedes this back in '98 and you know what they said?

"You don't understand a thing about life, our businss plan is to scam millions of pounds of venture capital out of rich but credulous investors and go on a 12 month party snorting okey-doke, champagne and having business meetings in a hot tub in Malmo with 12 naked bimbos, who gives a **** if we sell some overweight Brits a single pair of Nike trainers, now stop being so damn serious, man".

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There is no brand loyalty to these sites. Anyone with any sense just uses Kelkoo or similar to quickly find the cheapest product. If I found a blu-ray I wanted for £1 cheaper on a site I had never used before, I would buy it. (As I did with "The social network" from mymemory.co.uk the other day). In that sense, they are almost worthless as businesses.

I've used Play for years and often they are the cheapest, or very close. As they are quick and easy to place an order with, I use them for over 50% of my purchases of the things they sell. I'll probably order an IP Camera from them today.

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"You don't understand a thing about life, our businss plan is to scam millions of pounds of venture capital out of rich but credulous investors and go on a 12 month party snorting okey-doke, champagne and having business meetings in a hot tub in Malmo with 12 naked bimbos, who gives a **** if we sell some overweight Brits a single pair of Nike trainers, now stop being so damn serious, man".

Fair play to them!

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LINK

Treasury blocks Channel Island mail order VAT loophole

"The VAT waiver was blamed in part for the closure of a string of record shops, including Fopp, Zavvi and Virgin Megastores"

Quote from Amazon.co.uk Seller forum (reg req.)Link

It will help smaller and medium sellers selling new media items, as they will at least be on a level tax playing field, with Tescos, Amazon etc

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analysts said that Play.com was almost certainly worth in excess of £400m given that turnover and profits have grown rapidly and the company was deemed by experts to be worth at least £300m two years ago.

They call them "a n a l ysts" for a reason. It's to do with where they talk from.

Edited by Redhat Sly

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LINK

Treasury blocks Channel Island mail order VAT loophole

"The VAT waiver was blamed in part for the closure of a string of record shops, including Fopp, Zavvi and Virgin Megastores"

Quote from Amazon.co.uk Seller forum (reg req.)Link

Should have been closed yonks ago. I don't think it makes that much difference to bricks and mortar record stores.

Bit like putting a tax on word processors to save typewriter manufacturers, utterly futile.

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Should have been closed yonks ago. I don't think it makes that much difference to bricks and mortar record stores.

Bit like putting a tax on word processors to save typewriter manufacturers, utterly futile.

20% discount is a lot. That's record stores complete profit gone and then some.

Leveling the playing field is essential, and there are still some independant record stores in existance. People do still buy CD's, granted not in as many quantities but they still sold 98.5 million last year. Add on DVD and BluRay sales too, which are still in demand. Digital film downloads are still in their infancy and people still like those as physical media.

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In the current "house/shelter/dwelling prices can never go down" economy this is a huge Depression style block to tax avoidance.

What next, a real economic plan?

I think it's very much the wrong side of the Laffer curve.

I'd be very surprised if much of this previously lost VAT (in the govts view) will inflate the VAT take significantly in the aftermath of the loophole closure.

More than a couple of quid on the price of a DVD and quite a lot of people will decide to download or not bother at all.

Even decent title DVDs are getting increasingly hard to shift for as little as a few quid each.

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20% discount is a lot. That's record stores complete profit gone and then some.

Leveling the playing field is essential, and there are still some independant record stores in existance. People do still buy CD's, granted not in as many quantities but they still sold 98.5 million last year. Add on DVD and BluRay sales too, which are still in demand. Digital film downloads are still in their infancy and people still like those as physical media.

DVDs and CDs are in steep, steep decline.

Big chunk of sales is the birthday/christmas gift market. As soon as some slick way of gifting content online or by download sees mass take up it will be the end.

Maybe some will survive like small record shops selling vinyl in some trendy London Borough but not as a serious market sector.

This loophole has probably just served to drive people online sooner than they would have naturally gone without such heavy discounts - that's not going to undo itself though.

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I think it's very much the wrong side of the Laffer curve.

I'd be very surprised if much of this previously lost VAT (in the govts view) will inflate the VAT take significantly in the aftermath of the loophole closure.

It's a start, next minute it will be Chandeliers or Solar Panels or VAT on all Amazon.com, sorry IndigoStarFish? imports.

BEIJING, Nov. 8 (Xinhua) -- The United States wants to push for a free trade deal for environmental goods at the upcoming APEC meeting, but erecting a barrier against China's solar products will retard its mission and impair global green efforts.

A day before the APEC meeting kicks off in Hawaii, the U.S. government will decide Tuesday whether to launch anti-dumping and countervailing probes on imports of Chinese solar panels and modules which could lead to punitive tariffs of more than 100 percent.

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english2010/indepth/2011-11/08/c_131235678.htm

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DVDs and CDs are in steep, steep decline.

Big chunk of sales is the birthday/christmas gift market. As soon as some slick way of gifting content online or by download sees mass take up it will be the end.

Maybe some will survive like small record shops selling vinyl in some trendy London Borough but not as a serious market sector.

This loophole has probably just served to drive people online sooner than they would have naturally gone without such heavy discounts - that's not going to undo itself though.

+1

I read an article the other day, saying most labels would stop making cd's in the next year or so, (cannot find link, but similar story link below)

Edit: It was an Hpc thread in OT forum

As an Hpc'er I blame the DM, Express & Times for giving Dvd's & Cd's away ;)

Link

Mercury, the label which is the UK home of U2, Chase & Status, The Killers and Arcade Fire, has stopped releasing singles on CD and vinyl.

The label made a loss on singles in 2010 and said it would now only release them physically as "rare exceptions".

Edited by Saving For a Space Ship

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  • 338 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
      • down 2.5%
      • Even
      • up 2.5%
      • up 5%



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