A Canada Goose retail store in Sanlitun, Beijing on December 2, 2021 Photo: Tao Mingyang/GT
A Canada Goose retail store in Shanghai on December 2, 2021 Photo: Qi Xijia/GT
Canadian luxury down jacket maker Canada Goose reportedly agreed on Thursday to refund the price of a down jacket for a Shanghai consumer after the retailer was coaxed by Chinese consumers over its controversial product refund policy and its discriminatory double-standard operations in the Chinese mainland.
After more than half an hour of communicating with the manager of a Canada Goose store in Shanghai, the consumer surnamed Jia, who bought a down jacket from the store on October 27 but said she couldn’t get a refund after discovering that the logo was incorrectly embroidered. , finally got his refund, according to a report by China Central Television (CCTV).
Despite the resolution of this individual case, the exposed issues involving Canada Goose in the mainland market could not be overlooked, industry watchers said.
The Global Times visited two Canada Goose retail stores on Thursday, one in Beijing and one in Shanghai, finding that product refunds could not be handled smoothly.
A salesperson at the Beijing store told the Global Times that it is “not advisable” to get a refund for a product because the process is “inconvenient”.
In the Shanghai store, the controversial exchange and refund policy was always raised when consumers inquired about refunds, with the first clause stating that “unless otherwise provided by applicable laws, all products sold in retail stores from Canada Goose in mainland China are strictly non-refundable.”
Xiji (Shanghai) Trading Co, a company linked to Canada Goose in China, filed an explanation with the Shanghai Consumer Council on Thursday about its controversial product refund policy in mainland China, a day after it was called, saying that all Products sold at retail stores in China are refundable according to Chinese law.
However, the response does not specifically explain how it will improve its refund policy for mainland Chinese consumers and help with their refund requests, saying only “We have listened to consumer suggestions, which deserve our deep consideration. In order to better serve consumers, we will conduct further research and make suggestions to our global headquarters.”
Instead of answering the key question of its refund policy in its physical stores, Canada Goose has added more words to its refund policy in its e-commerce channel.
The Shanghai Consumer Council “is not satisfied with the explanation”, and it will summon the company for talks next week with the exact date to be decided, according to the CCTV report.
Separately, in a statement sent Thursday by Canada Goose headquarters to the Global Times, it said that “in mainland China, customers are eligible to receive a refund within 14 days of purchase in accordance with applicable laws, if their product, purchased at a Canada Goose store, is found to have issues with materials or craftsmanship; and 7-day unconditional return and refund on official e-commerce platforms; or other circumstances subject to law. “
Tang Jiansheng, deputy secretary-general of the Shanghai Consumer Council, said Thursday’s explanation only specified a 7-day unconditional refund policy.
“Why can’t it follow the 30-day refund policy it has in other markets outside of China.”
When it comes to online sales, it’s clear that Canada Goose maintains an obvious “double standard” as they have a 30-day unconditional refund policy on the official Canada Goose website, but the clause does not apply. to mainland China, where the 7-day unconditional return clause applies.
The discriminatory refund policy has drawn backlash among a large number of Chinese consumers.
No brand should have privilege over consumers, the China Consumers Association (CCA) said on Thursday.
The CCA has stated that respecting and protecting the rights and interests of consumers is the obligation of every commercial operator. In this respect, no company or brand benefits from exceptional privileges. “If the brand sees itself as a big brand, engages in double standards and discriminates against mainland consumers, it will fail in this market,” the association noted.
The Shanghai authority summoned Canada Goose for talks on Wednesday over its controversial refund policy, urging the company to deliver its official interpretation of the policy by noon Thursday.