Sun has categorically denied that it acted in an anti-competitive way, as alleged by a reseller organisation that issued a complaint against the vendor to the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) last week.
The Association of Service and Computer Dealers International (ASCDI), has claimed that Sun is stifling its UK second-hand equipment market by not providing VARs with enough product information.
Sun’s policy is that it will only allow its products to be resold second-hand in the UK if they were originally sold in the European Union (EU). However, the only way of identifying whether a product was sold in the EU is by checking the serial number with Sun. The ASCDI has alleged that Sun has refused to pass on this information.
Joe Marion, president of the ASCDI, told CRN the organisation has no problem with Sun trying to protect its trademark. “We have contention with the fact that Sun wants it both ways; claiming dealers cannot resell if it was sold outside of the EU originally, and then not telling us whether it was or not,” he said. “This makes us question the motives, is Sun trying to protect its trademark, or shut down the second-hand market?”
However, Sun hit back in a statement obtained by CRN: “Sun’s policies actively encourage a vibrant market in second-hand products on a fair and lawful basis. Sun has not seen the complaint or been contacted by the OFT. Sun categorically denies that it is in any way acting in an anti-competitive manner or that its actions amount to an abuse of any dominant market position.”
Sun was recently paid a £450,000 settlement by VAR Amtec over an alleged grey market dispute. However, Sun agreed to check the origin of Amtec’s future stock when requested, as part of the settlement.
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