Ferrit. Incompetent #2

The Herald’s coverage of eCommerce leaves something to be desired – imagine surveying NZ’s eCommerce space and forgetting the biggest site is Trade Me, not, umm, Ferrit.

Perhaps Peter Griffin is a columnist shilling for Ferrit… regardless – we should blame him, as well as the NZHerald editors, and give kudos for whoever did the PR for Ferrit.

In another article from the Herald, we see a classic quote from hapless Ferrit boss Ralph Brayham, who says that he “estimates that currently only about 0.3 per cent of spending [in NZ] is done online…”

Actually, as later in the article shows, NZ has about $1.5bn worth of online retail sales each year and as the article also points out, $60bn of total retail sales. That’s 2.5% Ralph – you are out by about an order of magnitude.

It’s not as if this stuff is hard to find. Air New Zealand state in more than one place that they will hit $1bn in online sales in the June 2007 financial year, and they hit $840m in the June 2006 financial year.

Meanwhile perusing the NZHerald is one way to find that Trade Me sells (excluding cars and real estate, and back in October 2005) $300-400m worth of items each year. So Mr Brayham, with a modicum of surfing, could have found two company’s who stated in public that they have online sales worth collectively over $1bn. And that was half a year ago.

Published by Lance Wiggs


4 replies on “Ferrit. Incompetent #2”

  1. Hello Lance
    You make some good points about Ferrit and I agree many of your points.

    I guess I’m a little confused about your issue with the Saturday item since it was largely questioning the viability of the Ferrit business model.

    I’m not sure what you think was wrong – giving Telecom teh right to put its view?

    I did not go into the Trade Me site because it is acompletely different business model and volumes have been written about it –

    Ferrit has not been talked about much in the general press apart from general puff pieces.

    Kind regards

    John Drinnan


  2. John
    I should make it clear – I though the Saturday piece was excellent – exposing some good information and very well written. It is good to see you get behind the numbers from the puff pieces.

    I’m obviously also one who questions the viability of Ferrit’s business model and leadership, perhaps not as politely.

    My rough ‘something to be desired’ and ‘shilling’ comments refer to Sunday’s “Shop till you drop – on to your keyboard” piece, which was of a different standard and not at all critical of Ferrit.

    Trade Me, which, like eBay, has a Christmas rush of people buying gifts, is new Zealand largest seller of items (not airline tickets) online. It should be on the etailers list, even as an ‘of course’.

    I’d also add a couple of my online shopping favorites – ascent.co.nz and best of all the revamped apple.co.nz.



  3. For what it’s worth… just a couple of points to make. The 0.3% refers to the amount of new retail goods sold online in New Zealand – as we have always stated in all commentary including press interviews. The $1.5bn includes second hand stuff, travel and ticketing. It was our own research done with Neilsen Net Ratings and our research partner.

    And your numbers for our business are nowhere near accurate. We’re building a business from scratch and obviously will invest up front to do that. We invite opinion and constructive criticism of what we’re trying to do… bring it on… but having some facts is a good thing too.


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