You are viewing iworkatborders

 
 
29 August 2011 @ 02:03 pm
The "Buyers Premium" rip off  
 I thought the purpose of the liquidation is to generate revenue from which the creditor's outstanding bills will get paid.  What is the so-called "buyers premium" fee that gets added to purchases of store furniture and fixtures during the liquidation?

Is this money that will go to pay the creditors or is it a side little slush-fund that the liquidators get and keep that no one else ever sees or that even gets accounted for as part of the offical sale. 

It seems to me a little hokey that if you put a price tag of $100 on a book case unit it should cost the customer $100 or $100+ sales tax if applicable.  But instead it costs $110 plus any tax.  If you are going to charge $110 instead of $100 why not just price it accordingly.  Or is this a marketing gimmick to fool people that they are paying less only to nail them for an additional 10% at check-out.

Look at it this way.  The signs say "due to circumstances there is a 10% buyers premium on fixture sales."  What circumstances?  What the hell does that mean?   This  just smells fishy.
 
 
 
( 46 comments — Leave a comment )
(Anonymous) on July 29th, 2011 06:22 pm (UTC)
why should anyone care if these vultures coming into the stores pays another 10%... I sure don't.
aliasheist on July 29th, 2011 06:42 pm (UTC)
The liquidation is to generate revenue to pay back the creditors. The buyer's premium is to generate revenue for the liquidators who have been SO VERY KIND to purchase the flaming wreckage of the company and employ all y'all through to the bitter end.

Nobody here is stuck with John, are they? Older guy, likes stupid jokes, has a mad-on for you-pays? I forget his last name, but he made our liquidation pure hell when he was around.
indianaike on July 30th, 2011 03:42 am (UTC)
ha-ha, we had him. The guy seriously got off on having us update you-pays every day. I just found better things to do with my time instead, like sit in the back room for an hour.
(Anonymous) on August 3rd, 2011 03:49 am (UTC)
Yep we have him at our store. He tried to show me how to hang signs on the first day of liquidation..like I've never hung a sign with remo tape in my life.
aliasheist on August 3rd, 2011 04:49 am (UTC)
Oh god I am so sorry.

We chose to fuck with him. It was the only way. When he asked if we knew how to use the copier, we broke it. On purpose. He asked me if I knew how to use a tape gun. I wrapped myself in tape, because I have boobs and am clearly incapable. There will be a lot of that. When in doubt, ignore him and carry on as you would.
(Anonymous) on July 29th, 2011 06:45 pm (UTC)
This is so simple
It's a very simple formula. The money gained from the sale, irregardless of the 10%, goes toward the creditors via Borders. The liquidators have a binding contract with Borders where they get to reserve the right to charge 10%, because they're there to render an important service. Everyone has to get paid in this process. Nothing there is a rip-off now...it's all discounted deeply, and it's even been rumored that they offer deals on fixtures if they're bought in bulk. No one should be complaining at this point.
(Anonymous) on July 30th, 2011 01:37 am (UTC)
Re: This is so simple
I'm complaining that you used "irregardless" and it's not even a fucking word. It's "regardless". Simple.
(Anonymous) on July 30th, 2011 03:30 am (UTC)
Re: This is so simple
lol
(Anonymous) on July 30th, 2011 04:11 am (UTC)
Re: This is so simple
Oh let's not start that debate up again...

http://oxforddictionaries.com/definition/irregardless
(Anonymous) on July 29th, 2011 06:47 pm (UTC)
This is so simple
It's a very simple formula. The money gained from the sale, irregardless of the 10%, goes toward the creditors via Borders. The liquidators have a binding contract with Borders where they get to reserve the right to charge 10%, because they're there to render an important service. Everyone has to get paid in this process. Nothing there is a rip-off now...it's all discounted deeply, and it's even been rumored that they offer deals on fixtures if they're bought in bulk. No one should be complaining at this point. The "circumstances" mentioned are pretty self-explanatory: they don't go into detail because they don't have to. If anyone has questions, just direct them to the liquidator and he/she will answer.
ron_newman on July 29th, 2011 07:53 pm (UTC)
Re: This is so simple
Is sales tax charged on the premium or only on the posted price?
(Anonymous) on July 30th, 2011 12:32 am (UTC)
Re: This is so simple
final price + premium = subtotal
subtotal + sales tax = what they pay
booksatborders on July 29th, 2011 08:02 pm (UTC)
Re: This is so simple
Actually the liquidators a guaranteed a percentage of the sale value of both the inventory and fixtures. That's their profit. So why to they get an extra 10% on top of that? It's a rip off of the creditors because somebody who is already making a profit from liquidating the stores (Hilco etc) will rake in an extra 10% on fixtures on top of the percentage they're already getting.

(Anonymous) on July 29th, 2011 09:11 pm (UTC)
Re: This is so simple
They do receive a % of the sale itself before the Premium, you're right, but it's not greed or underhanded piracy, it's just another term of the contract between them, Borders, and the publishers. Obviously the creditors have to play ball in this game and practice a little patience, and they wouldn't have made a deal with Hilco if they weren't going to be satisfied in the end. It's a perfectly fair practice.
booksatborders on July 30th, 2011 01:26 am (UTC)
Re: This is so simple
There is no contract here that involves the publishers or other creditors. The contract is between Hilco and/or Gordon Brothers as liquidators and Borders as the dead beat debtor to liquidate the stores. The creditors got a chance to express objections to the proposed contract but they are not party to it.
(Anonymous) on July 29th, 2011 09:20 pm (UTC)
Re: This is so simple
Automatic fail for using this word: irregardless
(Anonymous) on July 29th, 2011 10:32 pm (UTC)
Re: This is so simple
and fail to you for calling that non-word a word :)
(Anonymous) on July 31st, 2011 06:46 pm (UTC)
Re: This is so simple
And fail to you for improper usage of a hyphen on a word....your turn.
(Anonymous) on July 29th, 2011 08:06 pm (UTC)
when you get into the fixture sales, the buyer's premium is actually a good tool. When the customer is haggling about the price it gives you some leverage to not lose all the cost. Also, this pays for the additional Fixture consultant if your store is big enough to have them.

Honestly, out of all the practices in the liquidation this is one of the least sketchy.
(Anonymous) on July 30th, 2011 01:40 am (UTC)
Huh?
Why should you care? They aren't giving you piece of the action. You're working hard to help Borders? That's a good one.
(Anonymous) on July 30th, 2011 02:39 am (UTC)
Re: Huh?
It matters to the fixture manager.
(Anonymous) on July 29th, 2011 08:24 pm (UTC)
A 10% buyers premium is an industry practice with auctions. Personally, I don't understand the point of it, but perhaps it's a common practice in selling used goods.
booksatborders on July 30th, 2011 01:23 am (UTC)
This is not an auction
This is not an auction. Despite some haggling, it is a sale between two parties not an auction where an licensed auctioneer actually performed a service.
(Anonymous) on July 30th, 2011 04:20 am (UTC)
Re: This is not an auction
Of course I realize that. But thank you for being so quick with your "correction."
(Anonymous) on July 30th, 2011 08:05 pm (UTC)
Re: This is not an auction
No, it isn't an auction -- and that's precisely why that 10% is charged, at least according to our liquidator (second round of closings).

They figure that in an auction, the price would end up being higher for the item, once the bidding ended. So the 10% premium is to compensate for there not being an auction and the item being sold at the lower, asking price.
(Anonymous) on July 29th, 2011 10:13 pm (UTC)
It is just a scheme to make the buyer think the price is lower. Don't worry when you get down to the end they will be practically giving them away and will even give some away with B1G1 and when someone comes in to pick up they will ask if they want something else that didn't sell. They don't want to have to dumpster any of it because they have to pay for the dumpster.
(Anonymous) on July 30th, 2011 12:39 am (UTC)
When my store liquidated, I was allowed to take 10% off the price of the fixture if the buyer put up a big enough fight, and whether I thought we would lose the sale. Regardless of the way you total it, the sale has to show a 10% premium. I was told it paid for the sale.
ron_newman on July 30th, 2011 01:50 am (UTC)
Why does this post have a date of August 29 rather than July 29?
(Anonymous) on July 30th, 2011 01:39 pm (UTC)
Extra Cash
Having worked for one of these liquidators. It is very plainly add-on cash for them. They do justify in many different ways such as having a "fixture manager". At the end of the day it is extra cash in the bank account of the liquidator which is partly why they want each one of those fixture sales tracked so closely.

It is all very legal. Ethical...not so much. These people are liquidators and ethics is not something they get very high marks in. An example is the "retention bonus" for management in the stores. This shady program is structured in a way that makes it very difficult to achieve anything near a full payout. Sure they want the managers to stay to the end but they really do not want to pay for it.
(Anonymous) on July 30th, 2011 02:50 pm (UTC)
Re: Extra Cash
I don't know how true it is, but I recall a couple of posts where some managers who thought they were getting such a bonus were told that it was a contingent on a group of stores making some kind of invisible liquidation plan. Since they collectively did not make the plan there were no bonuses.
booksatborders on July 30th, 2011 02:57 pm (UTC)
Re: Extra Cash
I don't know how true it is, but I recall a couple of posts where some managers who thought they were getting such a bonus were told that it was a contingent on a group of stores making some kind of invisible liquidation plan. Since they collectively did not make the plan there were no bonuses.
(Anonymous) on July 31st, 2011 04:02 am (UTC)
Re: Extra Cash
I'll gladly pay you tomorrow for a hamburger today!
(Anonymous) on July 30th, 2011 03:07 pm (UTC)
The buyers premium helps to pay for the wages of your store's fixture specialist, at least that's what I was told.
booksatborders on July 31st, 2011 01:56 pm (UTC)
Think about what you were told
Your fixture specialist is just another former bookseller, possibly a former supervisor. Let's be generous and say that person makes $11 and hour and is working 32 hours a week on fixtures. Cost = $352 hours a week x approximately 4 weeks of the fixture liquidation sale. Roughly $1400 for period. Depending on the person you had $300 or $400 for benefits. Of course if that person was a part-timer there are no benefits.

If the fixture/furniture sale generates $40,000 that "due to circumstances" buyer's fee = $4000.00. Remember it's not just chairs and shelves. You have all the cafe and warehouse equipment too.

I'd say that fee covers a lot more profit for the liquidators to pocket than it does any expense. The "fixture specialist" is just another employee just like everyone else. It's amazing the way the workforce buys into the bullshit "make it up as they goo along" explanations management sometimes feeds them.


(Anonymous) on July 31st, 2011 06:41 pm (UTC)
Re: Think about what you were told
Our store's fixture experts sure aren't getting the 10%. Our store had 2 fixture experts. After we closed, they both got an after-tax check of $74 each.
(Anonymous) on August 2nd, 2011 11:03 pm (UTC)
Re: Think about what you were told
I'm the fixture manager at my store and I'm a lowly bookseller making lowly bookseller money. I doubt I'll see a cent of the buyer's fee or any type of bonus, period. At least it'll look good on applications...
(Anonymous) on August 5th, 2011 03:46 pm (UTC)
Re: Think about what you were told
Your store is getting extra hours specifically for the fixture specialist(s) and the payroll money to back those hours is coming from the fixture liquidation company, not the book liquidator, not Borders.

That's what the 10% is going to help.
(Anonymous) on July 30th, 2011 03:39 pm (UTC)
'
(Anonymous) on July 30th, 2011 04:41 pm (UTC)
who gives a fuck
(Anonymous) on July 30th, 2011 05:37 pm (UTC)
Well, you for one.
(Anonymous) on August 1st, 2011 08:31 pm (UTC)
Do what our store did in April. We just took 10% off the price so when we added-in the 10% premium, it = the price on the sticker. Then there were no problems.
KanojoNoCarrera on August 2nd, 2011 01:05 pm (UTC)
Pfffft, I don't have to worry about this shit. My store hasn't even bothered to price the damn fixtures yet!! And we have like a 27 page long waiting list!!

The entire liquidation is going like a car accident.
(Anonymous) on August 4th, 2011 02:57 am (UTC)
can employees buy fixtures?
(Anonymous) on August 5th, 2011 06:59 am (UTC)
what do you think?
what the fuck do you think, fucking imbicile? Could you buy merchandise? :p
(Anonymous) on August 6th, 2011 01:40 am (UTC)
don't know if anyone said this already
But the buyer's premium is actually included in the price. It's not added at checkout
(Anonymous) on August 30th, 2011 07:26 am (UTC)
Re: don't know if anyone said this already
No they add it at the register in addition to the written price. Just a few hours ago they added 10% to a bottle of white chocolate syrup the cafe couldn't use in time. Fixture?.
( 46 comments — Leave a comment )