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Inkspot CEO talks toner prices

March 13, 2019

Vincent Teubler, Chief Executive of Australian ink and toner retailer Inkspot, has spoken out on the “obscene” price of OEM consumables in a recent interview.

Talking to Mirage News, Teubler argued that OEM ink and toner manufacturers have pushed the prices of consumables to “simply outright obscene” levels, which places them beyond the reach of many ordinary home and business users.

Teubler’s company has been in operation since 2007, and the CEO states that in this time, companies like HP, Canon, Epson, Brother, and many others, have increased their prices year after year, causing “real concern” for every cost-conscious business and home user.

However, there is an alternative, Teubler stressed: “Reliable high-quality aftermarket (home brand if you will) cartridges are available for practically every printer model nowadays and the home brand or ‘aftermarket’ cartridges can be up to 80 percent cheaper than their Genuine [OEM] counterparts,” he told Mirage.

“Officeworks and Inkspot both sell these ‘aftermarket’ inks and toners,” he continued. “Customers are demanding more cost-effective printer consumables because the price of Genuine cartridges is simply too high. Aftermarkets are the answer and clearly neither Officeworks nor Inkspot would sell these aftermarkets if we weren’t able to source the very highest quality products to meet customers’ expectations.”

Teubler also offered his opinion on the recurrent debate as to whether aftermarket products represent a drop in quality from the OEM equivalent.

“Go back ten-plus years and it was often touch and go if a manufacturer (and practically all cartridges are manufactured in China) could produce consistent quality output and at the volumes we needed,” he asserted. “But now there are literally hundreds of quality manufacturers. The trick for us is securing the production line time of the leading manufacturers. They literally manufacture millions of units a month for the US and European markets alone, markets that, like Australia, demand the highest quality products.”

Despite the ongoing increase in quality of remanufactured and aftermarket consumables, Teubler lamented that nearly 75 percent of the approximately 25 million cartridges sold in Australia annually are OEM. Asked why that remains the case, Teubler answered that “a lot of people had quality issues when they first tried aftermarkets years ago.”

“When buying from a reputable retailer, quality is no longer a concern,” he added.

Such is the stratospheric rise of OEM prices, however, with OEM consumables now “insanely priced,” that Teubler believes one solution could be replacing the machine altogether: “The price difference between the Genuine and aftermarket alternatives means you could often times buy yourself a whole new printer for the price difference, which in some cases exceeds 4 figures on a single set of cartridges,” he remarked.

For its own part, Inkspot’s website now includes a price comparison page, allowing users to compare prices between the most common inks and toners being sold in Australia. Teubler dryly added that the company is considering adding a link to a mortgage brokers, for those who still wish to splash out on OEM products.

“There simply is no valid argument for businesses, or indeed home users, to be spending so much on their printer cartridges in 2019,” Teubler concluded.

Teubler also addressed concerns from many customers that their printer’s warranty will be voided if aftermarket consumables are used with it, pointing out that these people are being “fooled” by the OEMs.

“Manufacturers put a line like ‘using non-genuine cartridges may void the printer warranty.’ Imagine buying a car and being told the warranty on the car will be voided unless you use their brand of petrol. They don’t ask you to because they can’t, and the same is true with printer consumables,” he declared.

 

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