Thermomix all mixed up
The new Model 5 Thermomix was released earlier this month, taking the Australian public by surprise because there was no prior publicity from Thermomix that a new model was in the works.
In a statement regarding the Thermomix issue, the ACCC said: “Misleading or deceptive conduct may also occur
when a business remains silent or omits key information which may impact a
consumer’s decision to purchase the goods or services.”
The statement continued, saying, “Whether the activities of a business raise
concerns under these provisions depends on the circumstances of each case.”
Australian customers who have recently purchased the previous Thermomix – called the TM31 – have expressed their distress that they were not warned there was a new model about to come out. Some have taken to social media to make their views known, starting a new Facebook group titled ‘Thermomix unhappy customers’.
Thermomix has been in Australia for 14 years and has more than 200,000 customers, with all of these appliances sold via the direct-selling model by Thermomix consultants. This form of direct marketing has proved quite successful, taking away some market share from other major appliance companies in Australia.
The Thermomix head office is located in Perth, led by the managing director, Grace Mazur, who brought the product out from Germany 14 years ago.
Following the venting of public frustration at the unexpected launch of the new model, Thermomix released a statement apologising to the Australian public.
“The Australian launch of the Thermomix Model 5,” read the statement, “…was conducted in line with global brand compliance, in accordance with our distribution arrangements which did not allow for any pre-promotion of the new product. We are deeply sorry that this has resulted in some of our very valuable customers feeling disappointed.”
“We value every one of our customers and recognise that this is not an ideal situation for everyone involved. We understand the position of our customers that recently purchased a TM31 and are taking this issue very seriously.”
Thermomix says it will continue to support the TM31 just as they still support the earlier model, the TM21.
The company initially offered customers who purchased the TM31 model 3 weeks prior to the launch of the new model, the choice of a $250 discount or an upgrade to the new model.But concerned with the current public backlash, Thermomix has now extended this time frame to those customers who purchased the older model 7 weeks prior to the launch of the new model. These customers in Australia have now been offered a gift set of a new bowl, blade and lid (valued at $395) as compensation.