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Iroshizuku Price Increase



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Say what you will about MB, but their ink is reasonably priced for what it is. $12 for a 50 mL bottle of ink in a solid if not beautiful bottle isn't bad at all.

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His tone was more "they won't be allowed to have it at all" and I didn't really want to get into it with him. He is, however, the US regional manager and was very much into the "I" word ("I'm brining Iroshizuku over," "I'm offering this ink to retailers," etc.).

 

 

 

I have met him several times at different shop fairs (I love the Namiki brand and head straight for it and him) and I have to admit I've never felt quite so dumb as when talking to him. When he mentioned JetPens, it just seemed personal on his part. But I'm interpreting a tone of voice that may not have been there and so is unfair. Then again, maybe not.

 

I'd say that the type of customers he and/or Pilot Namiki wants are more upscale and affluent, such as those making pilgrimages to Art Brown or the Fountain Pen Hospital. When I was waiting to pay for my pen at the shop fair, the guy next to me was having his order written up and he bought 7 pens at about $400 a pop. If you're spending that much at one time, a $35 ink doesn't seem like a lot. And if you've got the cash (or credit), you'll want a premium ink to go with your premium pens. There's a big difference between the incredibly beautiful Iroshizuku ink bottle and Noodler's catfish.

 

 

Sounds like he as MB aspirations. The reviews for this ink are all over the place, from OMG it's the greatest thing since sliced bread to it's so-so but I like the bottle. These mirror the MB reviews. If this is the case (and is pure speculation on my part) he can keep the ink. Being average and posing an exclusivity it doesn't have doesn't help my pen write at its best or increase my enjoyment. Just my 2 cents.

 

I don't know. I spend too much money on Noodler's and PRs, even if their price per oz is low. Maybe it's okay to have exclusive inks as a treat, at least for their unique colors, to say nothing of their quality. And I love quality in inks... Still resistingninja.gif

Edited by RitaCarbon
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I'm not referring to their ink prices. I'm referring to the aura Mb surrounds it's products. It sounds like the sales rep wants the same aura around his ink.

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Being average and posing an exclusivity it doesn't have doesn't help my pen write at its best or increase my enjoyment. Just my 2 cents.

 

Well, the Iroshizuku inks are really quite nice inks, and the packaging is absolutely first rate.

 

Are they the "best" inks available ? Hurm. Well, that's an intensely personal decision to make, and it's obviously going to vary. As I pointed out in another thread today, the differential between a middle-priced ink and a high-end ink is about two to four fancy coffee drinks at Starbucks, For some people who are not wealthy, that presents a substantial psychological barrier, for others, it's not a major issue because they prioritise for the ink over other "luxury" items (note quotation marks).

 

What's pretty clear is that there's a market of finite size for the high-end inks (high-end, at least as defined in terms of price for this discussion), and adding additional fees for shipping makes that market somewhat smaller. There's a "sweet spot" for price in terms of items like fountain pen ink, above which the sales plummet rapidly. Fountain pen ink, after all, doesn't have the public cachet of certain other items, as it's more of a personal pleasure, not being immediately obvious to those people who aren't using it. As such, the upper price point isn't as elastic as, say, clothing or shoes for some people.

 

Also, there's the issue for some people of price per volume being a more important criterion than others. Nothing wrong with that, of course, but once that criterion becomes the dominant one, discussions of specific performance or colour are simply not important to that person.

 

Here and there, one can find higher priced inks that seem to offer a discernable performance advantage, or a remarkable colour, or both. Personally, I find the Sailor Kiwa guro and Sei boku inks fit these criteria, and a couple of the Iroshizuku inks such as the Fuyu-gaki and Momiji. But there are several other Iroshizuku inks that I like well enough but wouldn't make any immense effort to acquire more of for my use.

 

 

 

 

John P.

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I'm not referring to their ink prices. I'm referring to the aura Mb surrounds it's products. It sounds like the sales rep wants the same aura around his ink.

 

Yep. That's how they sell. POTTY-MOUTH them for that! I am not going to buy another one of those. Not before I receive what I've already ordered. That gives me strength in my resistance.ninja.gif

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Jetpens can simply buy it from a Japan-side distributor and sell it and Pilot can't stop them. Once the ink cost stateside hits $35, Jetpens can go to $25 and still make some bidness (especially with FREE shipping). Of course, it'll also drive more people to order directly from Japan...this would be a pretty classless move on Pilot USA's part, especially since Jetpens has shown the flaw in Pilot's market research.

 

Since I told Lily about it and she's at the top of the Jetpens pyramid, I am sure she will find out what's going on.

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So long as Jet Pens keeps the free shipping for orders over $25, they will continue to be my source for Iroshizuku but I ALWAYS order extra goodies. Even without the free shipping, it is the best place to go for some of my art tools and will continue to get my business regardless as well as frequent mentions on Inkophile.

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Hello Everyone!

 

This is Lily from JetPens here. It's been brought to our attention that there are some rumors flying around about Iroshizuku inks (thank you to Bluemagister and others who emailed). Please rest assured that we don't plan on making any changes to our supply. I'm sure there are many representatives and voices in Pilot USA, but we are on very good terms with management. We ourselves are good and consistent customers of Pilot USA, Pentel USA, etc. and do our best to work with them to research new products and promote their goods in the USA. In fact, often times if we find that a product will do well we give them feedback so that they may bring the product in themselves to the US market. These large companies often have their hands tied because the way such large companies are set up. Their main market are office supply stores, which is a very different market than ours. That's what makes it possible for us to work together. In the big picture, we are still very niche market store.

 

We at JetPens do our best to bring rare items to our customers in the US with a high level of customer service and fast shipping. We respect our Japanese and American counterparts, and do our best to work with them so that the most needs can be met. These companies deserve to have their products appreciated, respected and displayed well, and they know our aim is to only promote their companies and encourage their business because it's a symbiotic relationship.

 

We hope that helps to answer a lot of questions! Please feel free to contact us if you have any more.

 

Best,

 

Lily

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Thanks, Lily! It's a relief to hear that.

 

I just placed an order for the next color on my list, Ku-jaku. I was waiting for you to get new stock on Kokuyo Campus MIO notebooks, which happened yesterday. They are very fountain pen friendly.

Edited by foxtail1

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Thanks, Lily! It seems that the ONE Pilot rep was the guy with the big problem and maybe he was just grandstanding or blowing off steam. Jetpens would be a very effective test marketer for Japanese companies, who can get valuable data on trends in the US with no financial investment (they actually PROFIT from Jetpens bidness). I am really glad that this was cleared up before it cost me $100 in emergency ink purchases!

 

:happyberet:

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Foxtail1, blue magister and dizzypen and all others - sure! It's our pleasure. Just let us know if you have any other questions!

Sorry about all the stress this caused!

 

:)

 

Lily

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Foxtail1, blue magister and dizzypen and all others - sure! It's our pleasure. Just let us know if you have any other questions!

Sorry about all the stress this caused!

 

smile.gif

 

Lily

 

Lily,

 

I have just got my order of Iroshizuku from your store. Thank you for your fast shipping!

 

Will you be able to sell us another Japanese ink - Sailor Nano? For reasonable price, of course.

 

Rita

 

Edited:

Oh, you have it in stock! I didn't notice that you had it. And the price is the same as for Iroshizuku. Others sell it for $30. Too bad you guys have just one color.

Edited by RitaCarbon
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Received Iroshizuku asa-gao very quickly from Jet Pens. Now I get to see what all the fuss is about.

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Now I get to see what all the fuss is about.

Care to elaborate?:embarrassed_smile:

"Anyone who lives within their means suffers from a lack of imagination."

Oscar Wilde

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Now I get to see what all the fuss is about.

Care to elaborate?:embarrassed_smile:

 

Probably just all the hype (fuss) from those of us who really love these inks.

Kristi

 

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Hey Lloyd and foxtail1! Looks like I was a tad too terse so here's the more "elaborate" version. Asa-gao has a great reputation for shading and I wanted to get a look at that myself. The online swatches didn't seem to match the color descriptions so that was another reason to see the real thing. Lastly I've either seen, bought, or received samples of most of the Iroshizuku colors except the blue inks and that sealed the deal.

 

So far the color seems closest to Visconti Blue and possibly Diamine WES Imperial Blue. It is slightly brighter than the latter but more tests and comparisons are needed. One of these days I'll acquire a great flex pen and then take asa-gao out for a real test drive. (Santa, are you listening?)

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  • 4 months later...

Hello friends!

 

As you know, Namiki of Pilot Pen Corp of America has officially brought in the Iroshizuku inks at the suggested retail price of $35 in the US. We have been asked to raise our retail price in order to comply with the standard Namiki pricing level. The lowest target price (probably around $28) that we are allowed to resell the Iroshizuku inks will go into effect soon, by June 1st, 2010. All Iroshizuku inks http://www.jetpens.com/index.php/cPath/55_393_696 will be affected. We sincerely apologize for the price adjustment.

 

We hope you understand!

Edited by JetPens

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ZebraPenguin

I just saw your (JetPens) announcement via Twitter. Thank you for cross-posting the info here, and for having held out -- and been providing the inks -- for so long! Guess I'll have to re-evaluate my next ink purchase, but major kudos for not going to the full $35.

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Plus, with the free shipping over $25 (you're not changing that, are you?), it will still be a much lower price.

 

Of course, I imagine your sales on $3-5 items (to make it to $25) will drop! :roflmho:

 

Kristi

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