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Could you find me a book about 'grey market' products?

Posted on 2015-01-18
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Last Modified: 2015-01-20
Many eCommerce websites sell grey market items
When I look for 'grey market' the longest article is wikipedia

Is there a course in this subject
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Question by:rgb192
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Lucas Bishop earned 500 total points
ID: 40558390
I don't know that there's necessarily a "course", but there is a huge amount of information on "sourcing" from grey market channels shared on the web.  If someone were to reveal their entire process flow (from sourcing to reselling), that revelation would likely lead to a reduction in effectiveness. Hence, take any "how-to" overviews with a grain of salt.

I'd say the biggest player in "grey market" import/export is alibaba.com with globalsources.com as a close second. You can apply the same concepts for sourcing legitimate products to this process, the difference is you'll be building relationships with less trustworthy (unlicensed/unapproved) sources and potentially selling the products illegally (depending on your location/sales-channels), hence your risk is increased.

Identifying the difference between grey market and black market goods will be an undertaking unto itself, depending on the industry you plan to swim in and how much it matters to you.  Some suppliers will be the actual factories who produce the original items (ie. secondary assembly lines making grey market versions of the same products they're licensed to manufacture),  and other factories will provide completely counterfeit items (ie. utilizing poor quality lookalike materials). Depending on the product/industry, these differences may be critical to your success.

I'd recommend beginning to research the process of sourcing ("sourcing on alibaba"), but make sure you do tremendous due diligence to learn from the mistakes others have already made.  For example, "alibaba scams" and "alibaba fraud" searches will show you a wealth of information on risk avoidance.

From a very high-level, the sourcing process consists of:
1.) Contact supplier about purchasing specific product(s) samples
2.) Supplier provides cost quote (PI), with minimum order quantity (MOQ), price per unit, shipping cost/method
3.) You research company very thoroughly, to make sure you aren't sending your money to a scammer. If you're not familiar with the native language of your supplier, you could hire someone (with translation skills) off Elance to research the company for you.
4.) You wire the supplier the cost for the PI
5.) You receive the sample
6.) You may receive an invoice from customs for duty fees

You'll want to only purchase a sample initially. Make sure to ask the supplier to estimate what the import duties will cost and match them up with the import receipt once you receive your sample. Also make sure to match up the sample with what you were expecting to receive.

As for where you can resell grey market items, the possibilities are endless, but keep in mind the potential repercussions (lawsuits from rights owners, being banned from amazon/ebay, etc.)
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Author Closing Comment

by:rgb192
ID: 40561136
This is a big subject. Thanks for making the big into a set of smaller subjects
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