Collaborating with the British Brands Group on conference to tackle substitute sales
Melanie McGuirk

Are you getting stung online?
We’re excited to announce that today, we are teaming up with the British Brands Group to host a free event to help brand owners, retailers and distributors tackle substitute selling across online marketplaces.
The event is being held on the 10th of November at the National Motorcycle Museum, Solihull.
What is substitute selling?
Substitute selling is when an online seller  ‘tags onto’ an existing brand listing but supplies a substitute product rather than the advertised product. The seller takes advantage of the higher ranking of an established brand listing to sell inferior, generic or imitation products at a cheaper price.
The shopper doesn’t receive what they ordered, the brand owner loses sales and brand reputation is undermined by the sale of unauthorised third party goods. Official distributors of the brand also lose out.
Brand owners are reporting monthly losses of tens of thousands of pounds with many commenting that the problem is now too widespread to ignore.
Why attend?
Many brand owners simply do not know whether they are losing sales to online substitutes or, if they suspect, what to do about it. This event will guide you through the practical, commercial and legal issues arising from substitute selling, and offer you a strategy for tackling the problem.
The schedule:

10:00 Registration and coffee
10:30 Welcome
John Noble, British Brands Group
10:45 What is substitute selling and how does it work?
Melanie McGuirk and Sarah Bazaraa, Pannone Corporate LLP
11:15 Case study 1: how to identify the problem
Jake Currier, Bonnington Plastics
11:45 Case study 2: tackling substitute selling in-house
Sam Lucas, R H Smith & Sons
12:15 Lunch will be provided
13:00 The Trading Standards Perspective
Gavin Terry, Chartered Trading Standards Institute
13:30 Litigating in IPEC
Peter Sully, Storage Solutions
14:00 The legal perspective – key lessons
Melanie McGuirk and Sarah Bazaraa, Pannone Corporate LLP
14:30 Tea/coffee
14:45 Working collectively against online substitutes
John Noble, British Brands Group
15:15 Questions and discussion
15:50 Closing comments
16:00 Close
Please email Melanie McGuirk at or telephone 0161 393 9040 for more information.

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