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Breaking News: Hermes makes getting Birkins so hard it should be illegal!

Breaking News: Hermes makes getting Birkins so hard it should be illegal!


"Hermes makes getting Birkins so hard it should be illegal!"

This is how two Californian luxury lovers feel after they have got a little too frustrated by playing the infamous Hermes Game. The luxury fashion brand Hermes has come under fire for allegedly violating antitrust laws through the practice of "tying" sales, and are being sued in a class action lawsuit. The past week has been a whirlwind in the handbag community and everyone is at the edge of their seats to see how this will play out. 

Luxury culture is built on mirrors and mystery. Hermes is selling more than luxury, they're selling mystique, a culture, a status people want to be a part of, even desperately so. So their business practices are designed to highlight perceived scarcity and privilege.

This is exactly what Hermes is being sued over. The claims are that Hermes unlawfully allows only customers with "sufficient purchase history" with the company to buy its famed Birkin handbags.

Hermes is violating antitrust law by “tying” the sale of one item to the purchase of another in the opinion of the two "victims" of luxury. In other words, Hermes encourages you to build up a purchase history of items you perhaps don't necessarily want to purchase but feel like it is absolutely necessary to purchase them because it will directly correlate to advancing you to get to the item you actually want to acquire.
Of course, this is not a practice exclusive to Hermes, many other luxury companies are known to have this business model. Ferrari, Rolex, Audemars Piguet, all have similar models that require clients to build a loyalty with the brand by purchasing other "beginner" items or less valuable items before the brand decides you are "deserving" of the ultra luxury VIP items. 
In the case of Hermes, these highly desirable bags you are playing the Hermes game for are the Hermes Birkin or the Hermes Kelly. Not only this, once Hermes decides you have achieved the status of being eligible for the Birkin or the Kelly, it is not like you've hit the jackpot. There is a limit of 2 bags per year, rumoured to be going down to one, and you have to continuously work towards your quotas if you are looking to build a collection. What's more, your purchase history resets every year. So every year you may be faced with working back up and maintaining that reputation to be considered again. 
Before I go further into Hermes' response and my opinion, let's review some of the important highlights about his case to have a clear understanding of it.

What is a Class Action Lawsuit?

A class action lawsuit is a legal action taken by a group of people with similar grievances against a defendant. In this case, consumers are banding together to hold Hermes accountable for their alleged antitrust violations.

What are Antitrust Laws?

Antitrust laws are regulations that promote fair competition in the marketplace and prevent monopolies or anti-competitive practices. By allegedly engaging in "tying" sales, Hermes may have violated these important laws.

What is "Tying" Sales?

"Tying" sales is a practice where a seller requires a buyer to purchase one product in order to obtain another product. This can limit consumer choice and stifle competition, which goes against the principles of fair trade.

Implications for Consumers

If Hermes is found guilty of violating antitrust laws, consumers may have been unfairly limited in their choices and potentially overcharged for products. This class action lawsuit aims to seek justice for those affected by these alleged practices.

The Importance of Fair Competition

Fair competition is essential for a healthy marketplace where consumers have a variety of choices and prices are kept in check. Antitrust laws exist to protect this balance and ensure that no company can unfairly dominate the market.

As the class action lawsuit against Hermes unfolds, it will be important to pay attention to the outcome and the implications it may have for the fashion industry and consumers.

What is Hermes' stance on the lawsuit?

In response to the allegations, Hermes has vehemently denied any wrongdoing and has vowed to defend its reputation and integrity. The brand has issued a statement expressing confidence in its business practices and commitment to upholding the highest ethical standards.

How does Hermes plan to address the situation?

Despite the legal challenges ahead, Hermes remains steadfast in its heritage and dedication to providing exceptional products and services to its loyal customers, based on their current sales tactics.

What can consumers expect from Hermes moving forward?

As Hermes continues to navigate the complexities of the legal system, consumers can expect the brand to stay true to its core values of quality, craftsmanship, and innovation. The brand's unwavering commitment to excellence serves as a testament to its enduring legacy in the world of luxury fashion.

While the outcome of the lawsuit remains uncertain, one thing is clear: Hermes is determined to emerge from this challenge stronger and more resilient than ever. The brand's response to the allegations reflects its unwavering dedication to maintaining its position as a leader in the fashion industry.

What does this mean for consumers?

For consumers, the outcome of this lawsuit could have significant implications. If Hermes is found guilty of antitrust violations, it could lead to increased competition in the luxury fashion market, ultimately benefiting consumers by offering more choices and potentially lower prices. On the other hand, if Hermes is cleared of any wrongdoing, it may reinforce the status quo and limit opportunities for new players to enter the market.

How does this impact the industry?

From an industry perspective, the outcome of this lawsuit could set a precedent for how luxury brands conduct their business. If Hermes is held accountable for antitrust violations, it may prompt other companies to reevaluate their sales practices and ensure compliance with antitrust laws. This could lead to a more transparent and competitive market, benefiting both consumers and businesses alike.

Why should you care?

As a consumer, it's important to stay informed about the outcomes of cases like the Hermes antitrust lawsuit. By supporting fair competition and holding companies accountable for their actions, you can help shape a more ethical and competitive marketplace. Your voice and choices as a consumer have the power to drive positive change in the industry.

Ultimately, the outcome of the Hermes antitrust lawsuit will have far-reaching implications for consumers, the industry, and the market as a whole. Stay tuned for updates on this case and continue to advocate for fair competition and consumer rights.

I don't think anything will change in the sense that Hermes will prevail and continue doing business as usual. After all, they are a private company. What will change is the way the industry responds and reacts. Other brands like Chanel have made big efforts to close the gap between the way they are perceived alongside Hermes. They have made a lot of changes in order to enhance their reputation and tactics, positioning themselves in a similar way Hermes does. 

Stay tuned for more news to come! 


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