Jump to content
Classifieds is broken, please do not submit any new ads ×

The UK operation of Sailor Pen is closed


A Smug Dill
 Share

Recommended Posts

Only today did I come across this official announcement made by Sailor nearly three months ago back in February 2022. Has anyone else noticed?

 

Quote

Please be advised that Sailor Pen have now opened their new operation in France called Sailor Pen Europe. …‹snip›… The UK operation of Sailor Pen will close with immediate effect.

 

 

 

There's also this advisory earlier in April:

 

Quote

 

Please DO NOT use Sanitizer containing alcohol before using your pens and for cleaning your pens.

For cleaning and disinfection, we recommend using diluted Neutral Detergent, Hypochlorite water, or Sodium Hypochlorite.

 

 

I endeavour to be frank and truthful in what I write, show or otherwise present, when I relate my first-hand experiences that are not independently verifiable; and link to third-party content where I can, when I make a claim or refute a statement of fact in a thread. If there is something you can verify for yourself, I entreat you to do so, and judge for yourself what is right, correct, and valid. I may be wrong, and my position or say-so is no more authoritative and carries no more weight than anyone else's here.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Replies 15
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

  • A Smug Dill

    5

  • JulieParadise

    1

  • txomsy

    2

  • Linger

    3

They did move the European import and distribution functions to France last year. I am still not sure how exactly though. I once heard that the UK firm was an independent third party distributor, but Sailor France does seem to be a group company, owned and operated by Sailor themselves. When it comes to information exchange, as in the consumer asks and Sailor answers, there is NO noticeable improvement. It was bad and it still is bad. On top of that, some French companies simply close down completely during festive or holiday seasons. For a week or more. Altogether closed. No activities. Cannot understand nor appreciate that.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

15 minutes ago, Linger said:

When it comes to information exchange, as in the consumer asks and Sailor answers, there is NO noticeable improvement. It was bad and it still is bad.

 

Does Platinum's overseas subsidiaries or distributors do it well? What about Pilot's?

 

I don't think it's in the industry's dominant Japanese players' DNA to appease Western consumer expectations, even in the age of social media being all important. They're going to continue to operate using their ‘traditional’ paradigms, until such are proven to hurt their businesses both in the domestic Japanese market and overseas.

 

Moving the company's base of AMEA operations to France does not seem to be any reason or ‘an opportunity’ for Sailor to change its level of responsiveness to regional market consumers while they're at it.

 

For what it's worth, in my brief experience back in 2019, Sailor was the most responsive out of the Japanese Big Three to e-mail enquiries I sent as a Westerner.

 

I endeavour to be frank and truthful in what I write, show or otherwise present, when I relate my first-hand experiences that are not independently verifiable; and link to third-party content where I can, when I make a claim or refute a statement of fact in a thread. If there is something you can verify for yourself, I entreat you to do so, and judge for yourself what is right, correct, and valid. I may be wrong, and my position or say-so is no more authoritative and carries no more weight than anyone else's here.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

There are two differences that might have resulted in changed consumer-facing communication:

 

1) from 3rd party distributor to wholly owned subsidiary group company;

2) from local UK to local French employees.

 

Even if all is blamed on their communication to Japanese HQ, they could still be (a) transparent (b) responsive and (c) understanding of “Western consumer expectations”…

 

Anyway, i like Japanese pens too much, so I have to put up with it. Patience is a virtue. All good comes to those who wait. Etcetera.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 minutes ago, Linger said:

There are two differences that might have resulted in changed consumer-facing communication:

 

You're focusing on the result, and using your personal preferences from the consumer perspective as a frame of reference. For the sake of discussion, I'm looking at it from the perspective of a business decision — whether that's moving the base of AMEA operations from one country to another, or taking initiative to improve responsiveness to (current or prospective) retail customers' enquiries — and motivation for implementing a change along the way. It's not about me, but it's also not about you; it's just business.

 

As @JulieParadise alluded, there is significant and quantifiable benefit to the company — if only in avoiding complications and undesirable impacts of changes due Brexit — for Sailor to shift out of the UK, so that rationale hardly needs selling to management or explaining to observers.

 

Where's the one for improving consumer-facing interactive communication? Do you expect it would really make the consumer base get much looser with the purse strings and throw more money at Sailor products? Would quicker responses make you want to spend even 20% more money with Sailor every year than what you already did/do?

I endeavour to be frank and truthful in what I write, show or otherwise present, when I relate my first-hand experiences that are not independently verifiable; and link to third-party content where I can, when I make a claim or refute a statement of fact in a thread. If there is something you can verify for yourself, I entreat you to do so, and judge for yourself what is right, correct, and valid. I may be wrong, and my position or say-so is no more authoritative and carries no more weight than anyone else's here.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

So you are saying that if there is no business advantage for plain common courtesy, decency being nice in general, a company can instruct their consumer-facing employees to behave pretty much how they want?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 4/30/2022 at 12:53 AM, A Smug Dill said:

Only today did I come across this official announcement made by Sailor nearly three months ago back in February 2022. Has anyone else noticed?

 

 

 

 

There's also this advisory earlier in April:

 

 

Thank you, Smug.  I figured alcohol wouldn't be so good.

Festina lente

Optimism kills

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 5/1/2022 at 3:30 AM, Linger said:

So you are saying that if there is no business advantage for plain common courtesy, decency being nice in general, a company can instruct their consumer-facing employees to behave pretty much how they want?

 

No, but you seem to be making a lot of leaps of logic, and projecting them onto my words.

 

However, to address your pointed question, which was couched in what I perceive to be an accusatory tone, with commensurately pointed focus:

  1. A company can instruct their consumer-facing employees to behave pretty much how they want, within what is acceptable according to applicable law. The ability and legality of issuing such instructions are not predicated on whether there is a business advantage to the company, much less how you'd feel about those instructions as Joe ‘Random’ Consumer, who may or may not choose to deal with it.

    Therefore I definitely did not make the if-then logic statement you seem to be accusing me of having made.
     
  2. There is most likely business advantage to the company in employees being courteous, decent, respectful, responsive, etc. — to everyone, including their colleagues, business contacts, clients, current and prospective customers, and even random members of the public. I made no statement that there is no business advantage to be had. My only implication, if there was one, is that what you feel would be the advantage from your perspective is unimportant for others to consider.

    Change is not inherently cost-free to implement or manage in business, even if it is just a shift in policy, or decision to monitor and enforce a policy more strictly. If you're advocating a change on the part of an external entity, such as a company, and lamenting or begrudging a missed opportunity for that entity to implement the change you want, it's much more useful — both in pitching the idea to the entity, and to gain support in an open forum of your peers who you can assume are not like-minded and share each other's (or your) values tacitly — to take the approach of, “F***et what I want, let's talk about you. If you do X, it will give you so much of a benefit of Y, which would come from my spending so much more on your products, or that countless others just like myself in the market all being a bit more ready to give you a little more of their consumer spending each, or that some other entity will offer you this whole body of new business,” etc.

    You are not, just as I am not, the reason why a company should make a change. Allowing you to spend less for the same overall satisfaction, or reducing your level of frustration, are not goals to motivate anyone else. The company's best interests, and what it stands to gain, should be at the heart of why it has to implement a change; you and I are just part of the environment in which it operates.

    So sell/promote the ideas of what you advocate by highlighting how the benefit to the company is going to exceed the cost to the company to adopt them, if you want to benefit as a self-styled minor stakeholder on the periphery.

I endeavour to be frank and truthful in what I write, show or otherwise present, when I relate my first-hand experiences that are not independently verifiable; and link to third-party content where I can, when I make a claim or refute a statement of fact in a thread. If there is something you can verify for yourself, I entreat you to do so, and judge for yourself what is right, correct, and valid. I may be wrong, and my position or say-so is no more authoritative and carries no more weight than anyone else's here.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Happy to report that this closure has no deleterious effect upon myself or the Pro Gear. 

"Simplicate and add Lightness."

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thank you Smug for this snippet.

 

Didn't even know that they'd had a presence in the UK.

 

No surprise though, European operations should be run from Europe. 

 

 

Remember kids...always shop within your means.   :lticaptd:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Actually, what a company does is not limited to what damages their income. They may also consider what increases it.

 

The problem is defining what will increase sales/price in current context.

 

I think one can say that moving elsewhere carries an implicit cost. That they did may be because they were losing money or because they had expectations of increasing business or both. In this case, and considering the reported chaos post-brexit I would assume they'd wait to see if it would clear out once settled. Not touching forum taboos, I think there are evidences this seems not to be happening soon, and meanwhile their business is hampered. So, +1 for business contraction.

 

Besides, they may consider that moving can improve their income reducing an extra step of customs costs.

 

About user interactions, I wonder how many they do have with respect to the whole of their operations. Then, there are the cultural differences. There are many in between EU countries regarding customer interaction/service, but those may not be evident to someone coming from Asia. To them, all EU people may look the same and minor differences that may be annoying locally may be irrelevant from their point of view. So, even if interested, it will take them time to adapt.

 

In any case, I'd conclude that they are moving (I mean not location), which is a great sign: it tells us they want to go forward, to invest in the market, to adapt. Which is great for it also means that, if they see any opportunities in the future they will be on the lookout for them. It is not like they have abandoned a market, but that they are pouring in money to develop it.

 

So, if you want better customer service... first, give them some time to adapt and develop their new operations, and then show them there are new opportunities in improving it (and maybe provide suggestions/solutions). At least you know from this move that they are interested in increasing their returns.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

7 minutes ago, txomsy said:

Actually, what a company does is not limited to what damages their income. They may also consider what increases it.

 

I know that very well, having spent many years as a business analyst (with whatever position title) being engaged in Net Promoter Score, Lean, Six Sigma, process improvement, cost reduction, etc. corporate initiatives. It's still all about what's in it for the company first and foremost. You only really want to make the customers feel important and valued if there is something the company thinks it will get out of them and their peers; all else is hot air and lip service. I'm not saying don't do anything for the customer, or that the customer shouldn't want any improvement, but I was pointing out the way to motivate companies to change is to show them it makes a favourable difference to the bottom line, never mind how the customer feels as an individual or how he/she stands to benefit from the recommended change.

I endeavour to be frank and truthful in what I write, show or otherwise present, when I relate my first-hand experiences that are not independently verifiable; and link to third-party content where I can, when I make a claim or refute a statement of fact in a thread. If there is something you can verify for yourself, I entreat you to do so, and judge for yourself what is right, correct, and valid. I may be wrong, and my position or say-so is no more authoritative and carries no more weight than anyone else's here.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Absolutely.

 

What I personally find astonishing is how many companies care for the immediate bottom line while neglecting the long term, often resulting in they themselves undermining their own future prospects.

 

Customer satisfaction as an example of "karma" falls in that part. At one extreme one may act as a scammer, getting away with the customer money and no user satisfaction. There are many missing companies that are sorely missed by all, which speaks that they got a great reputation and user satisfaction, with a look forward but failed to survive long enough. In between, I think any company needs to devote part of their investments to long term profits.

 

And another good example is the many ads aimed at kids for grown-up products: while a kid asking dad or mom why they don't use such product, I rather think they are investing so those kids will be "indoctrinated" when they grow and become more or less captive customers.

 

Point is: it is not only short term benefit. Customer and employee satisfaction among other costs) may not improve immediate profits but will help secure futures. Likely worthless for scammers, but they should be valuable for serious entrepreneurs. So, there is a case to be made even if it does not immediately benefit the bottom line.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Brexit doing Brexit. (Sigh)

 

I dealt with them in France relating to a repair recently. It's fine, apart from the faff of long-distance shipping, customs forms etc etc, but they're par-for-the-course these days.

 

The UK: only country in history to vote to sanction itself. 

Too many pens; too little writing.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 months later...
On 4/30/2022 at 3:32 AM, A Smug Dill said:

 

Does Platinum's overseas subsidiaries or distributors do it well? What about Pilot's?

 

I don't think it's in the industry's dominant Japanese players' DNA to appease Western consumer expectations, even in the age of social media being all important. They're going to continue to operate using their ‘traditional’ paradigms, until such are proven to hurt their businesses both in the domestic Japanese market and overseas.

 

Moving the company's base of AMEA operations to France does not seem to be any reason or ‘an opportunity’ for Sailor to change its level of responsiveness to regional market consumers while they're at it.

 

For what it's worth, in my brief experience back in 2019, Sailor was the most responsive out of the Japanese Big Three to e-mail enquiries I sent as a Westerner.

 

Platinum did respond to my Facebook poke back in December 2017 with a sadface like on their Japanese Facebook page and promptly fired LuxuryBrands who had the distribution rights for all of North America. So as of January 2018, Lamy Canada's operator behind the scenes is now Platinum's distributor in Canada. LuxuryBrands now only has the rights in USA. They got fired for the Canadian distribution channel. Then again they weren't exactly anywhere in my province at all and LuxuryBrands had listed a non existent official authorized Platinum retailer which was the only one they had listed in all of BC. Little hard to celebrate your anniversary if you only exist in limbo.

 

For Platinum especially in the USA, you are better off poking Platinum Japan on their fb page. I don't trust LuxuryBrands.

 

As far as I know with Sailor from an quick aside from Nikado's owners, Sailor reached out to them and they had never stocked sailor beforehand so maybe post on Sailor Japan's official Facebook page?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share








×
×
  • Create New...