Ebuyer

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Ebuyer
Type Private
Founded 2000
Headquarters Howden, UK
Website http://www.ebuyer.com

Ebuyer is an online computer hardware and software retailer based in Howden, United Kingdom.

Contents

History

Founded in November 2000 by Paul Cusack, Mike Naylor, Steve Kay, Neeraj Patel, and Adam Ashmore - with startup capital of £250,000 from Paul Cusack, its annual turnover was in excess of £220 million by September 2005.[1] It claims to be the UK's largest independent online retailer of computers, components and electronics.[2] It was founded in Sheffield, but in February 2006 closed its Sheffield, Eastrington, and Holbrook outlets[3] to move to 280,000-square-foot ({{rnd/bExpression error: Unexpected < operator|Expression error: Unexpected < operator|(Expression error: Unexpected < operator)|Expression error: Unexpected < operator}} m2) premises in Howden. However, the company has recently re-opened a premises in Sheffield for IT staff only. It opened its US facility in February 2003, but this arm of the business closed in 2006.[4] The company is owned by Vida Capital Partners.

The current Operations Director is Armando Sanchez.

Ebuyer began building another warehouse in Howden alongside its existing one in December 2007. The new facility completed in November 2008. The new warehouse will help with the storage for other items such as kitchens, as part of their new sister company, Wren Kitchens.

Customer Service

During, 2005 Ebuyer had significant customer service problems. Sheffield (where the firm was originally based) Trading Standards had received 282 complaints about the company, and the customer service phone number had been removed from its Web site. After this, the firm promised to improve its service, and restored the customer service number to its Web site. Average daily telephone wait times are published. [5] In an effort to further improve the level of service, the operations direction Armando Sanchez now invited aggrieved customers to contact him directly using a contact form on the company's website.

Ebuyer publishes one contact number for customer service. Calls are directed to call centres based in the UK and USA.

Ebuyer received much criticism of its implementation of "national rate" 0870 and 0871 numbers for customer service and returns, although the 0871 returns number has now been replaced with an 0845 "local rate" number.

Customers wishing to communicate online can use the firm's "eNote" system .[6]

Ebuyer is also noted for using the courier City Link, although as of May 2009 they have started shipping most orders through UPS and Parcelforce.

Ebuyer Forums

The Ebuyer forums allow members to discuss products or find out information before they buy as well as seeking post sales help and advice from knowledgeable customers, moderators & staff.

Security

In July 2008, Gavin Brent, from Holywell in Flintshire, North Wales admitted stealing goods worth £20,000 from the firm before returning the goods, and demanding full refunds. [7].

Brent, whose suspicious transactions were spotted by Ebuyer's security system, went on to conduct an online campaign against the company and the investigation. This included menacing eBuyer staff and a police officer from Brent's now-defunct blog. [8].

Partnerships

Ebuyer have a number of strategic business partnerships in place, most notably with Hewlett Packard (HP Preferred Partner 2010). Other key partners include Microsoft, Toshiba and Sony. Ebuyer sponsors The Kingston Communications Stadium's west stand in Hull, East Yorkshire. They are also in a advertising partnership with Screwfix Direct, with promotions appearing on each other's offer newsletter. The value of the Ebuyer brand is often utilised by other companies, such as Shebang who license the name and website aesthetics for the EbuyerMobile website.

References

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